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Salon Kitty

Overview

Tinto Brass scored his first major international success with this shocking but stylish tale of decadence in the Third Reich, inspired by a true story. Madame Kitty Ingrid Thulin is the proprietor of one of Berlin's most luxurious brothels, where many members of the Nazi high command are her regular customers. Kitty is approached by Helmut Wallenberg Helmut Berger, an S.S. official who orders her to shut down her business and act as his partner as he founds a new bordello, which will exclusively cater to the ...
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Overview

Tinto Brass scored his first major international success with this shocking but stylish tale of decadence in the Third Reich, inspired by a true story. Madame Kitty Ingrid Thulin is the proprietor of one of Berlin's most luxurious brothels, where many members of the Nazi high command are her regular customers. Kitty is approached by Helmut Wallenberg Helmut Berger, an S.S. official who orders her to shut down her business and act as his partner as he founds a new bordello, which will exclusively cater to the elite of the Nazi Party and the German military. Unknown to Kitty, Wallenberg's brothel has been staffed entirely by women recruited by the S.S. for their loyalty to the Reich, and each room has been equipped with secret recording devices, which will allow Wallenberg and his staff to not only gather blackmail material against troublesome officers, but to discover who might be expressing disloyal thoughts about Hitler's regime when their guard is down. Margherita Teresa Ann Savoy, a pretty young prostitute working for Kitty, is especially devoted to both her job and her country, but when she falls in love with Biondo John Steiner, a German officer and frequent customer who has grown disillusioned with both the war and National Socialism, she discovers the true purpose of "Salon Kitty," and sets out to destroy the operation, with Kitty's help. Both a scandal and a success in Europe, Salon Kitty initially played the exploitation circuit in the United States in an edited version titled Madame Kitty, though the shorter version still earned an X rating.
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Special Features

Inside Salon Kitty - interview with director Tinto Brass; Designing Salon Kitty - interview with produciton designer Ken Adam; International trailer; U.S. trailer; Radio spots
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Mark Deming
Love it or hate it, there's no arguing that Salon Kitty is not your standard-issue exploitation movie about the kinky underside of Nazi Germany. Produced on a lavish budget, and featuring several reasonably well-respected actors (most notably Helmut Berger and Ingrid Thulin), Salon Kitty is several noticeable steps up on the food chain from grind-house efforts such as Ilsa, She-Wolf of the SS or S.S. Love Camp No. 27, but at the same time director Tinto Brass was clearly unafraid to push the kink level and gross-out factors as far as he could. Beyond the expected cross-dressing and S & M diversions, Salon Kitty includes onscreen animal slaughter, women forced to have sex with hunchbacked dwarves and subhuman giants, and a chorus line of naked prostitutes "seig heil"-ing en masse before being put to the test by a gang of randy S.S. officers. While the film stops just short of hardcore, the near-constant nudity (both male and female) and continual parade of sexual and emotional perversity insures this movie would never get an R rating, at least not in its uncut form. While based on a true story, Salon Kitty is for the most part played so over the top that it's hard to read as anything but a fantastic worst-case scenario of Third Reich deviance on parade (embodied by the icy hysteria of Berger's Officer Wallenberg). However, Brass makes occasional efforts to humanize the proceedings, most notably through the romance between jaded soldier Biondo (John Steiner) and semi-idealistic call girl Margherita (Teresa Ann Savoy) and the relentless good cheer of Madame Kitty (Thulin) (whose obvious similarities to Marlene Dietrich are played up by Annie Ross' Blue Angel-inspired vocals in the English-dubbed version). Salon Kitty is difficult to take seriously as history, and it's too grim in its sadism and thematic implications to enjoy as a glossy slice of softcore porn; it's an undeniably well-crafted bit of feel-bad entertainment, but for every moment where it sets itself up as a cautionary tale, there's another where Brass rubs our nose in this elegant sleaze seemingly just for the hell of it. If nothing else, Salon Kitty gave Brass the ideal dry run for his next project, the infamous Caligula.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/23/2010
  • UPC: 827058701099
  • Original Release: 1975
  • Rating:

  • Source: Blue Underground
  • Presentation: Wide Screen / Subtitled
  • Sound: DTS 5.1-Channel Surround Sound
  • Time: 2:14:00
  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Sales rank: 33,960

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Helmut Berger Wallenberg
Ingrid Thulin Kitty
Teresa Ann Savoy Margherita
Bekim Fehmiu Hans
John Steiner Biondo
Stefano Satta Flores Dino
Dan van Husen Rauss
John Ireland Clift
Rosemarie Lindt Susan
Paola Senatore Marika
Sara Sperati Helga
Tina Aumont Herta Wallenberg
Maria Michi
Ullrich Haupt Jr.
Luciano Rossi
Gianfranco Bullo
Gigi Ballista
Margherita Horowitz
Clara Colosimo
Malisa Longo
Alena Penz
Bruno Nicolai Conductor
Technical Credits
Tinto Brass Director, Editor, Screenwriter
Ken Adam Production Designer
Fiorenzo Carpi Score Composer
Ennio de Concini Screenwriter
Ermanno Donati Producer
Enrico Fiorentini Art Director
Maria Pia Fusco Screenwriter
Silvano Ippoliti Cinematographer
Jost Jakob Costumes/Costume Designer
Roberta Licurgo Producer
Bruno Nicolai Musical Direction/Supervision
Ugo Pericoli Costumes/Costume Designer
Giulio Sbarigia Producer
Jan Schlubach Art Director
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