Cult, campy and carnal! "Viva" is the acclaimed new retro sexploitation epic created by Indie feminist director Anna Biller. Meticulously photographed and vibrantly stylised, Biller presents a contemporary homage to the classic sixties sexploitation extravaganzas made famous by directors such as Russ Meyer, Doris Wishman and Radley Metzger. 'Viva' details the story of Barbie (played by Biller), a bored housewife whose search for sexual thrills leads to an odyssey of swinging sexual liaisons, orgies and kinky countercultural kicks. By revisiting 'classic' sexploitation through a cool, contemporary and cerebral feminist lens, Biller's film provides both a seductive sixties scenario as well as a self-reflexive and savvy commentary on the so-called sexual revolution of the psychedelic decade. 'Viva' combines Playboy chic with postmodern commentary, feminism with freak-out retro sexual spectacle. Welcome to the vivacious and visually stylised world of Viva!
'Viva' was the first full length feature by Anna Biller, whose 'Love Witch' is a similar high-camp 1960s sexploitation parody. Biller takes the lead role in 'Viva', giving a suitably mannered performance, complete with a haughty scowl and a wardrobe full of gaudy costumes.
It's a fun film which supposedly carries a feminist message, though it would have just as much impact if edited down to a couple of comic sketches.
Biller apparently drew her inspiration from the pages of old Playboy magazines, and she is very good at conveying that garish, plastic world, with all its shiny sexism and slightly sinister hyper-reality.
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