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Passions Of Carol, The

Studio: Video-X-Pix
Category:  Classic , Feature film
Directed by:
Starring: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Released on: 
Where to buy:DVD NewDVD RentStreaming/Download
Flash's ratings for Passions Of Carol, The:
Overall Rating 2 stars
Passions Of Carol, The overall rating 2 stars
Female Looks Passions Of Carol, The Female looks rating 4 stars
Male Looks Passions Of Carol, The Male looks rating 4 stars
Sex Passions Of Carol, The Sex rating 3.5 stars
 
Plot/Acting Passions Of Carol, The Plot/Acting rating 4 stars
Extras Passions Of Carol, The DVD Extras rating 1/2 star
Audio/Video Quality Passions Of Carol, The A/V Quality rating 2 stars
Worth$7.50
Rating Scale
Reviewed by Flash  on  1/17/2005

The Passions of Carol


A disc review by Flash
Release Specs:

Distributor: Video-X-Pix
Edition Details: Standard
MSRP: $29.99
DVD Release Date: August 2004


Movie Specs:

Genres:
Feature Film, Golden Age Classic, Holiday Theme
Run Time: 76 minutes
Rated: X
Release Year: 1975
Director: Shaun Costello (as Amanda Barton)
Written by: Shaun Costello (as Amanda Barton)
Cast: Mary Stuart (as Merrie Holiday), Kim Pope, Jamie Gillis, Arturo Millhouse, Kevin André, Shaun Costello (as Helmuth Richler), Susan Sloan (as Rose Cranston), Day Jason (as Daniela Di Orici), Angela Dermer, Marc Stevens, Sonny Landham, Alan Marlow (as Alan Barow), Stuart Dickerson, Alan Grodin, Ashley Moore, Carter Stevens, Shaun Costello (as Russ Carlson), Toni Scott

      Disc Specs:

Audio: English 2.0 Mono
Subtitles: none
Video: Pan & Scan, 1.33:1
Video Format: NTSC
Regional Code: 0 (All)
Disc: DVD 5 (SS, SL)
Special Features: Trailers
DVD-ROM Special Features: none


Synopsis:
Carol Scrooge (Mary Stuart), head of Beaver Publications, makes Bob Hatchet (Jamie Gillis) work on Christmas Eve to redo a layout for a male nudie magazine.  That night she is visited by her long dead partner Lance Marley (Marc Stevens), who foretells that three ghosts will visit her to try and save her from the current path she is on.

Audio/Video:
The Passions of Carol is presented with an English 2.0 Mono track, which isn't as good as it could be and is downright disappointing in places.  Through much of the film the audio is fine, considering the age of the film, but starting at 18:58 and continuing on until 39:21 there is a loud and rather distracting crackle that is present throughout the audio.  It is a shame that Video-X-Pix didn't attempt to clean up the audio as it does distract from the film.  The dialog is clear throughout the film though.  Video-X-Pix hasn't included any foreign language tracks or any subtitle options for the feature film.

The Passions of Carol is presented in the standard full frame aspect ratio of 1.33:1, which does not appear to be the original aspect ratio for the film.  There are places in the film where the picture has obviously been cropped for this presentation.  I would guess that the original aspect ratio was approximately 1.66:1 and it is a shame that Video-X-Pix didn't present it this way.  The video is even more disappointing that the audio was.  The beginning portion of the original opening credits is gone and has been replaced with obviously recently made green text.  This is just for the initial portion of the credits where Merrie Holiday in The Passions of Carol is presented.  After the title the film switches back to the original credits.  I'm not sure if the original film for the opening was accidently destroyed or if it was altered at some point for an unknown reason.  The picture itself is grainy and shows its age.  The blacks aren't true and appear more gray than black in some portions.  There are also artifacts present throughout the film.  For the age of the film the video could look much better if Video-X-Pix had attempted to clean it up.  There also appears to be some problems with reel changes during the film.  At 18:58 and 59:31 there are roughly four second problems where it looks like there was a reel change that wasn't lined up properly so some of the leader is shown.  All in all, Video-X-Pix could have put a lot more care in mastering the disc and cleaning up the master film.  The film isn't unwatchable, but the overall quality is very disappointing.

Special Features:
The only extra included on the disc is trailers for Take Off and Every Inch A Lady.

Disc Design/Navigation:
The discs is designed with simple animated menus with background music.  The design is functional but nothing great, it looks cheap and doesn't convey the holiday theme of the film very well.  There are five chapters available from the chapter menu.  Each one is identified by a still frame of the scene that it goes to.  There are six chapter stops within the feature film itself.  Video-X-Pix has watermarked the disc.  The watermark, which is the Video-X-Pix logo with white lettering except for the capital X which is red, appears on the bottom right at each chapter stop and lasts for roughly ten seconds.  There is a partial time code encoded on the disc for the feature film.  The player displays the time into the film but time searching has been disabled.

General Review:
Very few Christmas theme adult films have ever been released and the best of the lot is probably The Passions of Carol, made by Shaun Costello under the moniker Amanda Barton.  Filmed in New York before the death of the NYC adult film industry, this film is very different from much of Shaun Costello's work which mostly consists of the NY roughies.  This isn't to say that the film isn't demented in it's own way, as it is, but it is demented in a light hearted way.

The Passions of Carol is an adult adaptation of Charles Dickens story A Christmas Carol.  While it doesn't follow the Dickens classic faithfully it still holds the basic premise behind the original story.  Obviously the story has been altered to work in sex scenes, which is something that I'm sure that Mr. Dickens never intended.  The plot never gets too complex so it doesn't get in the way of the sex scenes.  Instead it complements them making for an enjoyable classic feature film.

The sex scenes are enjoyable and vary from rather straight forward to more twisted.  There isn't any rough sex in the film, but the theme for two of the scenes is a bit on the demented side.  One, featuring Mary Stuart, Susan Sloan and Alan Marlow portraying characters of a younger age, when Carol Scrooge's past is shown.  The other, featuring Mary Stuart and Marc Stevens, when Carol bangs her dead partner.  With the exception of the last scene, there is no original sound for the sex scenes.  All the sound has been removed and in it's place there is instrumental Christmas music, which is odd, but you get used to it.  The sexual themes in the film are vaginal sex with blow jobs, hand jobs, pussy eating and vaginal object insertion.  For viewers that care about condom use, there is only a condom used in one of the sex scenes.  The condom fits with the scene, so it isn't an intrusion, but instead makes the scene fit with the plot.

Made with an obvious low budget, the film makes the best of the money it had so although portions of the film have a low grade look, the film seems to have done the best it can with the money available.  The places where the low budget is the most obvious is during the times that Carol Scrooge spends with the Spirits in the void.  The sets are well done, especially the children's room from Carol's past with the pornographic Raggedy Ann and Andy pictures.  The end result is a humorous Christmas theme adult film that is enjoyable to watch.  Due to the holiday theme of the film, it is best for viewing at the holiday season and wouldn't work as well for viewing at other points in the year as the spirit just isn't right.

Scene Synopsis:
Scene 1: Day Jason, Mary Stuart, Sonny Landham
The first scene brings us Day Jason, Mary Stuart and Sonny Landham and Day starts out the scene by giving Sonny a blow job.  Then Mary joins in and the two lick and suck on his dick.  Then Mary gives him a blow job and Day sits on his face and gets her pussy eaten.  For a while Mary gives Sonny a hand job while she licks Day's breast and then returns to giving him a blow job.  Then Sonny vaginally fucks Mary while Mary eats Day's pussy.  Then Day gets vaginally fucked by Sonny as Mary licks his balls and Day's tit.  Sonny cums in Mary's mouth to end the scene.

Scene 2: Mary Stuart, Marc Stevens
The second scene gives us Mary Stuart and Marc Stevens and Marc starts the scene out by eating and fingering Mary's pussy intercut with shots of Mary giving Marc a blow job.  Marc and Mary have vaginal sex and Marc cums on Mary's pubic area to end the scene.

Scene 3: Susan Sloan, Mary Stuart, Alan Marlow
The third scene features Susan Sloan, Mary Stuart and Alan Marlow and Susan starts the scene out by giving Alan a blow job.  Then Mary joins in and they both blow him.  Then Mary blows Alan while Susan uses a doll arm to pleasure Mary and licks at her pussy.  Alan cums on Mary's chest to end the scene.

Scene 4: Kim Pope, Jamie Gillis
The fourth scene brings us Kim Pope and Jamie Gillis and Kim starts out the scene by giving Jamie a blow job.  Then the two have vaginal sex.  Jamie cums on Kim's ass to end the scene.

Scene 5: Mary Stuart, Ashley Moore
The fifth scene gives us Mary Stuart and Ashley Moore and Mary starts the scene out by giving Ashley a blow job.  Then Mary puts a condom on Ashley and they have vaginal sex.  Mary jerks off Ashley at the end of the scene, who cums in the condom.

Parting Thoughts:
The Passions of Carol is one of the few Christmas theme adult films to come out and despite it's low budget is very funny and definitely worth a watch during the holiday season especially if you are a fan of the classics or feature adult films.  This presentation is below average for films of the time but sadly this is probably the best we'll ever get released on disc.




flash

                           



Disclaimer:
MSRP prices are taken from the manufacturer's website at the time of writing, if the manufacturer's website doesn't give pricing, the prices are automatically given as $39.95.  Release dates are from the company or are the average release date recorded by stores when a company release date is not available.  The views presented in the review are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Adult DVD Talk.





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