The First 9 1/2 Weeks (1998)

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Formats

VHS - NTSC / DVD

Notes

Went direct to video.

Pictures

DVDCover

Summary + Review

    If you can ignore the fact that the title is just a shameless rip-off of the 1986 movie 9 1/2 weeks with Kim Bassinger and Mickey Rourke then you'll love this film. These two films, besides being erotic, have absolutely nothing in common. This film was released direct to video in October 1998.
     The story centers around Matt, a wannabe big time stock broker who is stuck working in the office until the wee hours playing the Asian market. He is the nice guy who finishes last, stuck on the worst hours and turns down sexual advances from the bosses wife who comes in late to get a piece of him. Just when it looks like he is going nowhere, a recent talk in Baton Rouge brought him to the attention of an eccentric billionaire who wants to invest $500,000,000 with Matt's company, but only Matt can make the presentation. So Matt heads of to New Orleans with dreams of getting in and out quickly and becoming a full partner in the firm.
Malcolm plays the eccentric billionaire, Francois Dubois, who is now crippled and forced to spend the rest of his days in a wheelchair ever since a car wreck two years earlier. It is wild to see Malcolm in a throw back to Long Ago Tomorrow AND as a crazy country gentleman, complete with the Louisiana bayou accent.
     Any hopes of Matt getting his presentation done and back to New York on the double are dashed right away. Francoise has no interest in seeing the proposal until he gets to know Matt and Matt gets to know New Orleans. ''You'll find things are very different down here'', he tells Matt. He is supposed to stay at a hotel, but moves right in with Francoise and his 24 year old Parisian wife Emily (Clara Bellar), who he instantly finds an attraction to. They have been married for seven years and she blames herself for Francois injuries because she was driving the car during the accident.
     They start talking and riding together on horseback and that night Matt wanders down to the stables and comes across two of the hired hands having some hot sex in the hay. He is excited, but even more so when he sees Emily watching from the other side of the room. The next night Francois had Matt take Emily to Mardi Gras, dressed up a vampire. This time they come across a couple having sex against a wall and again he is turned on. He goes to kiss Emily, but she won't let him, soon leading him on a chase through the back alleys. Before he knows it he is lost and a car is attempting to run him over. But it turns out to be Francois and Emily playing tricks on him.
That night she leads him to the old slave quarters and chains him to a wall where they have some hot kinky sex in the rain. Then the next day it's blindfolded erotic sex which involves food and a bathtub. He still hasn't given his presentation, but is no longer in a hurry to leave, even though his boss is constantly checking up on him. Before he knows it he is in over his head. He tells her he loves her and wants to take her away from all this, back to New York with him. Then he learns during his presentation that Francois knows about their relationship, and has pictures of them in action, but he doesn't care because, ''In my condition all I can do is watch.'' So, in truth he likes Matt's presentation, but Matt is drugged and wakes up the next day in his hotel. When he returns to Francois' estate, the guards at the gate won't let him in. The sheriff shows up and puts a gun to his head. It seems last night Matt had beaten up Emily pretty bad and is banned from the property. Of course this isn't true, but they believe what Francois tells him.
     During a big birthday party for Francois, Matt sneaks in where he soon learns that Emily is chained up in the slave quarters and has beaten savagely beaten because of her love for Matt. It is his mission to free her and he does, barely escaping the guards and making it back to the hotel room where he is arrested the next day for the murder of Francois. When it seems that he will rot in jail forever, Emily comes in with a tape showing Francois actually committed suicide. Now he is free to go on the condition that he can never see Emily again.
     Then there is a huge twist ending which I won't spoil for you, but let me say it is totally unexpected and makes this one of Malcolm's best films of all time - it is that good! Malcolm really hams it up as the bitter, drunk, rich, country cripple - another great performance. Definitely hunt this film down because you will not be disappointed. It is very cool, but not very erotic even though they call it a journey beyond pleasure. No,  there aren't scenes with Malcolm that are erotic either.

Rating: 8.5/10

This page 1998-08 Alex D. Thrawn for www.MalcolmMcDowell.net