This is the kind of movie that keeps me looking in all the cinematic places. It’s not the greatest of films, but it’s different and interesting enough to be worth seeing. The film is made up of two parts–one shot in the United States and one shot in Yugoslavia–that are juxtaposed.
In the United States we get the tale of Wilhelm Reich (WR) who had been an assistant to Freud, became a Communist, and developed a theory about sexual health. He came to the United States where he was persecuted by the government and ultimately sent to prison and died in 1957. We talk to several people who knew him and see the town he lived in. There is a little explanation of his theories, but it basically amounts to tying a life energy into the orgasm so that if sex is restricted then you get problems. Therefore, his theories tie sex into psychology and politics. We also meet several other interesting people like:
|Dr. Lowen’s Patient Undergoing Therapy|
In Yugoslavia we get the story of a Communist woman who develops a relationship with a visiting Soviet ice dancer. While she preaches sexual freedom and feminism, it’s her roommate that is really acting the way she talks.
|Reading “The Communist”: How Karl Marx Fell In Love|
There is also some footage of Stalin–real and fictional–and Mao. Considering the ending of the film, director Dusan Makavejev’s fascination with the connection between sex and politics doesn’t automatically turn into an endorsement. In fact, the ending is a bit of a warning. I won’t claim to fully understand this film, but I recommend you take a look.