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The Last American Lover Blu-ray Review

“The Last Romantic Lover” is a pleasant romantic film. 

In 1978’s French film “The Last Romantic Lover,” a busy, hardworking, free spirited magazine editor (Elizabeth) creates a publicity stunt contest dubbed The Last Romantic Lover. A circus owner (Max) encourages his lion tamer (Pierre) to enter the contest as the $30,000 grand prize would greatly help the struggling circus. Pierre reluctantly enters and makes the final 12 event in Paris. Pierre wins the consolation prize (a day 10 vacation) and he invites Elizabeth to join him. The 2 take a trip to the circus Pierre works out and, well, let’s just say the two begin to develop an unexpected bond.

Directed and co-written by Just Jaeckin (best known for the erotic hit “Emmanuelle”) alongside writers Ennio De Concini and Cesar Fernandez Ardavin, “The Last American Lover” is like a reality competition show (before they were big) meets “La Strada.” It’s a fast paced story that essentially feels like 2 movies in one (although both tie in thematically and lead into one another seamlessly). The first half is all about the exploitative competition and introducing the characters. The second half is the romance, the vacation (to the circus) and Elizabeth’s world being turned upside down. It sounds like the type of quirky Rom Com you’d see Hollywood churn out, but it’s never sappy or disposable. It’s a surprisingly tender and sweet story of love taking you on a journey that often looks and feels fantastical. The notion that “All the world’s a stage” as Shakespeare once said also feels relevant here as well (particularly with the circus and contest elements).

The talented and gorgeous Dayle Haddon really carries the film here and lights up the screen. Her chemistry with Gerard Ismael (Pierre) feels believable and elevates the movie as a whole. Ismael himself turns in a quality performance too. 


Presentation: 1.66:1 1080p. How does it look? This Cult Epics Blu-ray contains a 4K HD transfer from the original 35mm negative and the result is a pristine print.

Audio Tracks: French LPCM 2.0 Mono, 5.1 DTS-HD MA, and Dolby Digital 5.1. How do they sound? There is certainly no shortage of audio options here and each one does the job.

* 2 separate interviews with director Just Jaeckin and star Dayle Haddon
* Promo gallery
* Trailers for Cult Epics titles “Madame Claude,” “Playing With Fire,” “Naked Over The Fence,” “Frank And Eva,” “The Cool Lakes Of Death,” and “A Woman Like Eve.”
* Commentary by author Jeremy Richey
* “Presentation At Cinematheque Francaise”- A 15 minute Q&A from 2022.


February 16, 2023 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , ,

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