|Released||Aug 01st, 2001|
|Company||Sin City Films|
|Cast||Alec Metro, Frank Thring, Evan Stone, Eric Masterson, Jessica Drake, Mike Horner, Anthony Crane, Anthony George, Miko Lee, Michael Raven, Ava Vincent, Wendy Devine, April Flowers, Lee Stone|
|Critical Rating||Not Yet Rated|
If not before, then certainly with his Watchers winning best film at this year's AVN Awards, Michael Raven has ascended into the pantheon of the adult director elite.
Viewing his latest effort, Beast, it's not hard to see why.
Beautifully shot and produced, skillfully directed, compellingly scripted (though at times, just a tad excessive/pretentious: "Don't you know that the Virgin Mother cries tears of acid every time you slink off to a peep show and add your holy seed to the greasy muck separating you and your sick needs from the whores of Babylon on the other side?" Huh?) and populated by pretty porn people engaging in steamy, fetish-light sex, Beast is one of the very best couples tapes of the year thus far.
Anthony Crane turns in a pre-nominatable performance as the title character, a tortured soul who prowls the L.A. fetish underworld, obsessed with Beauty, a professional dominatrix played by luscious Jessica Drake. Real life denizens of that scene such as script co-writer David Aaron Clark will recognize that while Beast gets some of its BDSM details right, it gets others way wrong (now what self-respecting Domme is actually gonna fuck her clients? But hey, this is a porno).
Most, if not all, of the film's six sex scenes are imaginatively set and pretty damn hot as far as couples porn goes; nothing's too far off the middle of the road despite the production's fetish trappings. Things get off to a fairly sizzling start as statuesque Miko Lee, portraying a Mistress (a role she takes to like the proverbial duck to water though we're not quite sure why she's wearing a schoolgirl-ish plaid skirt rather than full-on dominatrix garb), verbally abuses her client (Alec Metro) before aggressively sucking and fucking him. That's followed by a collared and leashed, mascara-smeared blonde deep-throating Lee Stone all gooey-like before he energetically reams her.
Next up is mouthwatering "Mistress" Wendy Devine, attired properly in patent-leather, knee-high boots and form-fitting, revealing latex, whipping a male sub in a strikingly atmospheric medieval-like dungeon, then, like Lee before her, aggressively nasty-fucking him. Sex scene four has Drake strap-on-ing Ava Vincent to fairly horny effect. Sex scene five has Drake, absolutely ravenous in head-to-toe Domme couture and extremely becoming shoulder-length black wig, lightly "topping" Lee while Crane plows her in a seedy bathroom. The closer, meanwhile, is a gorgeously shot and edited Drake/Evan Stone slab of romantic couples smut. All told, Beast deserves a slew of pre-noms, including ones for Best Film, Best Director - Film, Best Screenplay - Film (Michael Raven and David Aaron Clark) Best Actor - Film (Crane), Best Actress - Film (Drake), Best Music, Best Editing - Film, Best Cinematography (kudos to Jack Remy for another fine effort), Best Box Cover Concept and Best Couples Sex Scene - Film (that closer).