More than four decades after the subgenre first shocked the world, the most depraved Nazisploitation sickie of them all must still be seen to be believed: Writer/director Luigi Batzella (THE DEVIL’S WEDDING NIGHT, NUDE FOR SATAN) combines footage from two earlier WWII action movies with a newly- shot plot featuring a sadistic female Nazi officer (Macha Magall of Bruno Mattei’s SS GIRLS), a perpetually aroused caged ogre (Salvatore Baccaro aka ‘Boris Lugosi’ of FRANKENSTEIN’S CASTLE OF FREAKS), and a cavalcade of sexual atrocities that Horror-Extreme.com calls “tasteless and glorious…it gathers all the ethos of the genre and smashes it into a wonderfully hellish mix.” Never released in America and banned as a ‘Video Nasty’ in the UK, this notorious feast of smut-schnitzel is now scanned from 35mm negative elements.
As embodied by Alan Bates, Butley falls back on the surgically precise wit and savage eloquence that helped put him in his current circumstances in the first place. The blitzkrieg of vitriolic commentary with which Butley engages lovers, students, rivals, and allies, all with equal ferocity, becomes a glass bottom boat illuminating the churning depths of his bankrupted soul. Acclaimed playwright Harold Pinter, in what Time Magazine hailed as “a quite superior directorial debut,” turns author Simon Gray’s single-set, dialogue driven stage play into an irresistible dynamic visual experience that tracks Bates’ hilarious and fearless performance with cunning precision.
Bates and an expert supporting cast, including OscarÃ‚Â® winner Jessica Tandy (Driving Miss Daisy), joust with a sly, self-referencing wit and an unselfconscious exuberance that is breathtaking. With every verbal parry and valedictory flourish of wordplay, Butley’s life becomes more of an inescapable bear trap of thwarted ambition, clandestine affection, and squandered brilliance.