The Little Details
Running Time: 83 min.
Production Date: 2 / 7 / 2003
Director: Michael Raven
Cast: Monica Sweetheart, Chris Cannon, Lea De Mae, Eric Masterson, Kaylani Lei, Ander Page, Valentino, Anna Belle, Barrett Blade, Alexis Malone, and Jaden
The Short Story
Initial Expectations: I have yet to find a Raven movie thatís not worth watching.
Initial Reaction: Itís a nicely done and very artistic vignette collection.
Who Should Watch It : Anybody wanting something a little softer and a lot more artistic
Who Should Avoid It: Anybody wanting a bit of nastiness or top notch technical aspects
The Technical Stuff
Audio /Video Quality: The audio leaves plenty to be desired. The Dolby 2.0 mix is pretty good, but the Dolby 5.1 mix lags behind the video by roughly fifteen seconds! It also seems to be about three seconds out of synch in the commentary track. Normally Iíd just stick with the 2.0 mix, but in that mix the music is restricted to one side of the audio while the performers are restricted to the other. Thankfully the balance is well done on the audio and there arenít any background noises, but the technical problems on this one were bad enough that the audio left me nothing but disappointed. The video is well done. It has varying amounts of grain, all of which appears to be done on purpose to help with the artistic feel of the scenes. The lighting is handled with the same skill, which makes this a very nice looking movie.
Music: The music is very nicely done. It changes for every scene to fit the scene, and helps out every scene because of it. My only complaint with the music is that itís a bit loud much fo the time.
Disc Problems: The audio is a big problem, and one that I hope will not rear its ugly head again.
Menus: As usual, the main menu is very nicely animated and gives a very good first impression. The chapter menu is fairly generic, however, and lets you choose a scene based on a small clip of each scene and a title for the chapter.
The FeatureLove Stories starts out Michael Ravenís Erotica Collection. He goes with a vignette approach and keeps the general idea the same. He starts things out with romance here, and doesnít let the modern age hold him back.
|Scene 1 - Monica Sweetheart and Chris Cannon|
The Companion takes place in the future and features isolated prisoner Chris being given robotic companion Monica. Heís disgusted with the idea of not having human companionship, but after a little time comes to regard her differently and getting it on with her. After exploring her a little, Chris lets Monica attack his cock orally. He reciprocates with a tongue lashing of his own before letting Monica ride him cowgirl style. They get in a bit of doggie and missionary as well before Chris deposits his dick droppings on Monicaís stomach.
This is a decent scene. Chris and Monica have some nice energy and chemistry, but the soft feel of the scene interfered a little for me. I know that this is one of Wickedís erotic movies, but there just seemed to be something a little off here for me and I think that it was the soft feel. Itís still a nice scene, but nothing fantastic.
|Scene 2 - Lea De Mae and Eric Masterson|
Drive - In Love features knockout blonde Lea and Eric in a fifties style scene. Shortly after Eric stretches out to put his arm around Lea, she bends over and puts her amazing oral skills to work on him. They slide to the back seat for Eric to return Leaís oral attention to each of her holes before boning her from behind. Lea also rides Eric reverse cowgirl style before letting him out of the car so he can stroke himself all over her smiling face.
This is a very nicely done scene. Lea and Eric have great chemistry and keep the energy level nicely realistic. The camera work is also done very well here. You get a good feel for the tight space of the car, and thereís plenty of flickering lighting to simulate the movie playing on the screen in front of the car. This is a hot and well executed scene.
|Scene 3 - Kaylani Lei, Ander Page, and Valentino|
Silent Sex goes back to the movies of the silent film era with Valentino enjoying the pleasures of the flesh with his harem girls Kaylani and Ander. The girls let Valentino kiss them a bit before sliding down to suck his cock. Since Ander gives Valentino the first oral attention, she also gets the first fuck doggie style. Kaylani takes her turn next with Valentino spooning her and fucking her from behind on top of Ander. Ander also gets a little missionary loving mixed in with Kaylaniís doggie fucking before Valentino finishes things up letting the girls share a nice facial.
This is a pretty good scene. The girls appear to be held back from getting into each other too much, but thereís just enough to let the chemistry between the girls work. They also have great chemistry with Valentino, who looks perfect for his role and does a great job taking on the two girls. Best of all is the editing of the scene. Itís done just like a black and white silent movie, and about the only giveaways for it being a modern scene are the tattoos and piercings on the girls.
|Scene 4 - Anna Belle and Barrett Blade|
Perfection finds Barrett trying to drink away his memories of Anna before heís given a second chance at love. Barrett kisses her on the lips before sliding down to kiss Annaís lower lips. She reciprocates with some nice sucking and stroking before getting down on all fours for Barrett to fuck her from behind. Barrett also fucks her missionary style before giving her a nice facial.
This is a very nice scene. Barrett and Anna have nice chemistry and keep the scene moving nicely. I really like the feeling behind the scene, and think itís something that most everybody can relate to. Itís that common feeling that raises this scene up an extra notch and makes it a real winner.
|Scene 5 - Alexis Malone and Jaden|
Ladies Lounge finishes things up with blonde Alexis sitting on brunette Jadenís lap in front of a fire. They start out with some passionate kissing before Jaden helps Alexis strip down as she kisses her way across Alexisí very nice body. Jaden strips down a bit as well as they kiss and play with each other before sliding down to tongue Alexisí pussy. Alexis thanks Jaden properly with her tongue and fingers before laying back on a coffee table to let Jaden have another turn. Finally Jaden grinds against Alexis before the scene fades out.
This is a pretty good scene. Thereís very nice chemistry between the girls, and for not having toys it does pretty well. Iím not a huge fan of toys in all girl scenes, but here I think it could have helped things out. It seems like a little somethingís missing here, and a think a dildo or vibe could have really helped take this from being very good to being great.
Love Stories is a nicely done vignette feature which should have a definite audience out there. It keeps things soft and artistic, and virtually every camera shot focuses on the beauty of the performers or situation. It also succeeds by bringing in a wide range of situations for the scenes. Itís also quite consistent, and I donít know that thereís a standout scene here in either direction. The only thing I think might scare some people off here is that the scenes are all fairly soft and loving. Thereís no anal and the lesbian scene is even very soft. It works for here, but I can see it losing a few people. Love Stories is a beautiful collection of vignettes, and a nice start to Michael Ravenís Erotica Collection.
The Extra StuffTrailers are included for Angel X, Breathless Dream Quest, Euphoria, and Heroin. Star stats with a photo of the star, a little personal information, and a link to the starís scene are included for Monica Sweetheart, Kaylani Lei, Eric Masterson and Chris Cannon. There are several photo galleries and a behind the scenes featurette. Thereís also promotional materials, interviews, featurettes, DVD-ROM stuff, and a commercial for the Free Speech Coalition.
Several photo galleries are also included, each of which gives you about five seconds per great looking snapshot or full screen photo. Star galleries lasting a little over five minutes total are included for Kaylani Lei, Anna Belle, Ander Page, Monica Sweetheart, and Alexis Malone. Thereís also a four minute movie gallery and a behind the scenes gallery that lasts almost a minute and a half.
There are also several interviews. Eric and Lea take about a minute and a half to talk about their scene and some of the little details about it. As usual, Eric jokes around a bunch while Lea looks a bit lost as she sometimes has a few problems with English. Kaylani Lei and Ander Page also take about a minute and a half for their interview, and talk about their websites while just playing around a little and having a smoke. Anna Belle takes nearly a minute to talk about her website and her scene. Finally, Alexis Malone and Jaden take about a minute to talk about all the firsts theyíre doing for the scene. Itís a nice little bunch of interviews, but nothing too deep.
The special effects reel lasts about a minute. Michael Raven narrates a split screen where you can see both the original footage and the final composite. He points out some of the differences and how they did it. Itís a short featurette, but a nice featurette.
Michael Raven and Kaylani Lei team up for the audio commentary. Sadly, the commentary is hard to hear since once again somebody botched the audio mix. The music comes out of one speaker while the rest of the movie and commentary comes out the other. The commentary and movie also donít have the best balance which makes it almost impossible to understand what Kaylani and Michael are saying at times. Even if it was easier to hear, this isnít one of the best commentaries Iíve heard. Kaylani seems a little lost, and I wouldnít be surprised if this was the very first commentary she tried doing. Sheís almost silent throughout the commentary, and Michael prods her a bit without much for results. They talk a little about the sex and upcoming projects, and thatís about it. This is a commentary thatís probably best skipped.
All Access: Behind the Scenes of Love Stories lasts over a half hour. Thereís plenty of Michael Raven explaining whatís happening in each scene as well as working with the cast. You get to see the scenes being shot as well as the still photos, and even get a little of the cast screwing around between takes. As usual with Wicked Pictures, itís a nicely done behind the scenes featurette.
The Down -n- Dirty Sex Stuff
Themes: Straight, rimming (male > female), group, and lesbian
Raincoat Factor: High
Condom Usage: 100%
The Bottom Line:Currently, many of Wickedís DVDs can be found online for between $15 and $30 with many stores offering them for around $21. Rent this one first as I can see it being quite hit or miss with people. The movie is nice and consistent and Wicked put some nice effort into the extras. Unfortunately the audio has some bad synching problems which definitely holds back the overall DVD.
Note to Wicked Pictures: Please pay a little more attention to your quality control. It definitely lacked here, and hopefully thatís a one time incident.
If you have any questions or comments, please e-mail me .
Other reviews by Astroknight