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Thread: Artsploitation Films Releasing The Devil's Playground On DVD

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    Administrator Ian Jane's Avatar
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    Artsploitation Films Releasing The Devil's Playground On DVD

    Hollywood director Fred Schepisi's first feature film is The Devil's Playground, a 1976 Australian semi-autobiographical drama of a 13-year-old boy’s struggles at a Catholic seminary in the 1950s. The film, long out of print, is being re-released by Artsploitation Films in a new widescreen HD transfer. Included in the DVD is a featurette with Schepisi, as well as an interview and audio commentary by him. The film will be released on DVD and VOD August 8th.

    Australian-born filmmaker Fred Schepisi, directed only The Devil's Playground and The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith before being lured to Hollywood where his works include Barbarosa, Iceman, Plenty, Roxanne, A Cry in the Dark, The Russia House, Six Degrees of Separation, I.Q. and Fierce Creatures. The Devil's Playground features a young Simon Burke as Tom, a seminary student struggling with his nascent sexual yearnings and his divine calling. The seminary is lorded over by a group of Brothers who follow a harsh code of religious discipline, all the while repressing their own desires. A lyrical, mordantly funny memory film about the age-old struggles of mind, body and spirit.

    "The Devil’s Playground is such a completely and thoroughly realized piece of cinema that almost every scene and sequence in it compels admiration.” – Boston Globe

    The Devil's Playground; Director: Fred Schepisi; Country: Australia; Year: 21976; Running Time: 99 minutes; Language: English; Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1; UPC: 851597006766; SRP: $14.99

    Trailer: https://vimeo.com/320769946

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  2. #2
    Low Angler vincent_z's Avatar
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    Exclamation A review.

    From Robert Rimmer's "The X-Rated Videotape Guide II" [ISBN 0-87975-673-X]:
    " Here's the other side of the coin -- an Australian-made film about male sexual repression in a Roman Catholic boys' school. The young boys just reaching puberty have a grim time trying to reconcile their budding sexuality with the rigors of religious discipline. There's no explicit sex and only one scene where the boys and the Brothers teaching them are shown naked. The story revolves around Simon Burke, an attractive young boy about twelve years old who can make you emphasize with his sexual problem. Along with a group of other youngsters, some a little older, he's being educated by priests and brothers in a very strict environment, which even precludes their seeing each other naked. Poor Simon, he's still a bed wetter, and he also has continual problems with his dick. He tries to confess to one of the priests and admits to another that he whacks himself off two or three times a day. He's not the only one. Some of the boys are so distressed with their sexual yearnings that they've taken up self-flagellation and other awful forms of bodily penance. One of the priests is cool enough to recognize that a little masturbation is healthy. But most of the brothers are not so understanding, particularly a sexually hung up one who has wet dreams. Simon experiences a brief, loving kiss from a girl his own age in a nearby girls' school. He's later told by one of the priests who censors his incoming mail that he must stop writing to the girl. There's some excellent dialogue, and you'll really feel for Simon and some of the brothers who, after one boy commits suicide, leave the school."

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