|Was this what they signed up for when they joined the Hitler Youth?|
Tinto Brass is one of a handful of true auteurs of erotic cinema, and an ever rarer species in that unlike, say Radley Metzger, he survived the advent of both hardcore and home video and continues to produce his own brand of softcore cinema to this day. He's best known in the United States for 1979's Caligula, which is a damn shame. I reckon that there's few, if any, filmmakers whose work could survive being butchered by Penthouse editor Bob Guccione. A far, far better indicator of Brass' considerable talents is 1976's Salon Kitty, a sly and witty exploitation film that has far more on its mind than mere titillation (not that that is remotely neglected.) Kitty uses the true story of a Nazi brothel to examine the clash of cultures when National Socialism arrived in the debauched heart of Weimar Germany and the messy business of mingling sex and politics, and it does so with lavish production design, appealing cabaret numbers and an excellent cast loaded with veterans of the grindhouse and the arthouse. Of course, many out there will disagree with me. Some will find this movie to be deeply offensive or outright pornographic. That's great. There would be little fun in sharing our thoughts on film if we all thought the same way. Unfortunately, there's some out there who not only don't like this movie, but think that no one else should either. Worse, these people have the ear of a certain major online retailer.