There are others who've come nipping at his heels in the realm of artistically visionary porn, it's true – and they're not by any means to be dismissed – but there indisputably is only one Andrew Blake, and with Valentina, he profoundly reminds us why he's the still the best, as if sounding a little captain's blare to all the rest announcing that they can try, but they can't give him any real run for his money.
In a lot of ways, this reassertion of his mastery of the form mirrors that displayed recently by Woody Allen with Match Point; like a lightning bolt, it kind of makes you sit up and say to yourself, "Oh yeah, this guy's a fucking god." And among gods, there roam nothing less than goddesses. The women who populate Blake's films are the most ravishing, carved-from-stone specimens you will ever find in porn, period. What his work equates to, quite literally, is the fantasy Victoria's Secret commercial come to life.
Blake's new muse, and the titular star of the film, is Valentina Vaughn, a brunette beauty of extraordinary magnitude, whose wordless tale here documents her passage, in flashback, though what the box calls a "Mysterious Sexual Ordeal." Mysterious, most definitely – it involves everything from S/M with a Real Doll to carousing with a snake to being forced to drink piss. White hot? Every fucking last frame, dear erotiphiles. If some part of this opus doesn't make you horny, you've got some serious problems to sort out.
Valentina seems to have suffered an injury of some sort during her Ordeal, as she's in a wheelchair and head-dressing, and is being attended to by luscious nurse Monica Mendez during the scenes framing the flashback sequences. This doesn't stop her from diddling herself during her reflection, of course, and you better believe that watching this girl diddle herself is a sight you don't want to miss.
As with most Blake films, girl/girl scenarios dominate the proceedings, and it's real damn hard to isolate one that prevails over the others here, but if for no other reason than because it's the only one to include actual cunnilingus, we'll give slight favoritism to the scene between Bobbi Blair and Charlie Laine.
The two boy/girl scenes that are here both astound, as well, but once again, if we had to pick one over the other, it'd be the ferocious banging done by Angie and Devon Savage.
Valentina is a masterpiece. And for all the great stuff other smut artisans have been doing out there the past couple of years, this is stunning verification that the lot of them are still merely nipping, nipping away.
Pre-noms: Best All-Girl Scene (Bobbi Blair, Charlie Laine); Best Couples Scene (Angie, Devon Savage); Best Solo Scene (Valentina Vaughn); Best Tease Performance (Valentina Vaughn); Most Outrageous Scene ("Free Flow" – Valentina Vaughn, Adriana Sage, Charlie Laine, Bobbi Blair); Best Music (Raoul Valve); Best Director, Best Cinematography & Best Editing (Andrew Blake); Best Film.
Retailing: Trumpet it loudly to Blake fans and your entire clientele in general.