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There have been a handful of movies based on fumetti. I've heard "Satanik" is pretty bad period. Some years later there was also "Cemetery Man" based on a novel by the author of the famous fumetti "Dylan Dog". It was this movie though that has just confused the hell out of everybody since it's based on a comic strip "Valentina" few outside of Italy have read and few in Italy probably understood. Valentina is a photographer who through the agency of a magic camera falls under the spell of a strange lesbian witch, Baba Yaga.
That's the basic plot, but it goes off on so many bizarre and surreal tangents that the movie itself is almost impossible to describe. At one point, for instance, Baba Yaga gives Valentina a doll which suddenly turns into a real-life dominatrix who strips her naked, ties her up, and whips her while the witch looks on approvingly. In another scene, Valentina's suddenly part of a firing squad shooting a naked woman on a Jean Rollinesque deserted beach.
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Carol Baker is the witch and although she is woefully miscast too young and voluptuous she acquits herself well and even did a full-frontal nude scene which was censored out. The actress that plays Valentina, Isabella de Funes couldn't act her way out of an 8mm porno loop with a German shepherd co-star, but she really doesn't have to in this very visual, non-linear movie. Ditto with Ely Galeani, who apparently auditioned for Valentina role but was hard as it is too imagine even worse than de Funes,so she took the living doll role. This movie definitely isn't for everybody, but if you're on this site reading this review and you've heard of any of these people I expect you'll probably like it.
She saves a dog from a fancy car driver by Baba Yaga Carroll Baker , a mysterious older woman that insists to drive her home. From this moment on, the life of Valentina changes and she has nightmares and her camera seem to be cursed. She believes Baba Yaga is a witch and that she is under a spell to possess her but her skeptical friend and filmmaker Arno Treves George Eastman does not believe. The conclusion is a plus in this interesting witch movie. My vote is six. Apparently inspired by a comic book, "Baba Yaga" is an unusually compelling, surreal nightmare of movie that also is vibrant with the essence of the late s.
Baba is not one to take rejection lightly, and subjects Valentina to physical and psychological torments. Well-made, hard-to-pigeonhole film, director Corrado Farina succeeds in creating moody atmosphere and a warped logic in which anything can and will happen. Funes in particular does a superb job of convincing the audience of the vacuum that's engulfing her; a young George Eastman "Anthropophagous" fares well in the role of her disbelieving commercial-director boyfriend.
The direction, which intercuts comic-book imagery with hallucinogenic dream sequences which all seem to possess a Nazi angle , is skillful and unpretentious. If you answered "Yes" you should not bother seeing this movie. However, if you can view a haunted house dark ride style movie as a satisfying cinematic viewing experience, then strap yourself in and enjoy the view as creepy weird unexplained visions flash in front of you. Pouty-lipped Valentina is smack-dab in the middle of the art house European revolution crowd of the time - photographing nude woman by day and walking the lonely city streets at night alone, which is how she meets up with "Baba Yaga" a mysterious woman who dresses in black played by the always lovely Carroll Baker.
She instantly weaves a spell over Valentina haunting her thoughts, her dreams and her camera. She also does a pretty decent job of weaving her magic spell over the viewer. Although very often defined as a "Giallo" film this certainly belongs more to the "Art Horror" genre. JOE 18 October Lounge revival fans and obscuro movie freaks should definitely take a look at this gem.
Kinky, weird, and sometimes just plain funny: Oh, and dig the killer soundtrack, too! Bezenby 6 August Is this artsy fartsy seventies jive or compelling allegory of the so called enlightened intellects versus the unknown? That's up to you to decide. Fobbing him off one night and walking home herself, she finds a puppy lying within a circle of candles and narrowly manages to save it from being run over by a car driven by the mysterious Baba Yaga Carrol Baker, from The Devil with Seven Faces. Baba Yaga's immediately starts getting weird on Val, taking a clip from her suspenders and saying she'll be back the next day.
And the next day indeed after Val indulges in some topless photography , Baba turns up and gives her the clip back and gives her address. Intrigued in a way only free living seventies people can be, Val goes to Baba's house, takes photos of things, finds a bottomless pit in the hall, finds a strange glove and puts in on, which prompts her to do a bit of invisible banjo playing while the film turns into a comic.
Baba also gives her doll in bondage gear and curses her camera so that every time she takes a picture of someone, they die. The doll on occasion turns into Ely Galleano from Lizard in a Woman's Skin and High Crime who puts in a performance so erotic, I felt obliged to send her some money in the post. It is, all done in a surreal, playful manner with plenty of topless women and kinky situations. It's not overly pervy though, but highly stylish. The sets and general execution are very good indeed, involving scenes that turn from reality to comic strip, a nazi trial, a boxing match with a guy dressed like Jesus, and a soap powder commercial that's truly bizarre.
Gore hounds will be disappointed, as will though who like things fast paced. As for me, I liked it. Made a nice change from all the violence you usually get from Italian films from this era. The copy that Shameless Screen Entertainment have released looks to be the fullest version including a full frontal scene with Baker! This is the only version I've seen so I can't comment on anything that's gone before. If you like Godard, Try this. Baba Yaga is the story of Valentine, a photographer who photographs women just one is model is used throughout the movie however , usually in various states of undress.
She meets the mystical Carroll Baker and becomes entranced with Baker Mystically not sexually at first. Carroll Baker puts some sort of hex on Valentine's camera and ,everytime Valentine shoots a picture of an individual, she metaphorically, at least I think, injures them as well.
Slowly, The attraction pulling Valentine to Baker's character evolves into a sexual one. Valenntine is lured to Baker's home, molested and whipped and saved in the end by her boyfriend. It is a fascinating movie. I will not say that it is a great movie cause there are a few things that the viewer is left wanting. Partly, It is, in my opinion at least, based on an adult comic book that was probably relevant more in 70's Italy, and partly because of censor's scissors that chopped a bit of the movie.
Farina, the director, creates wonderful atmosphere and lures you in. Isabelle De Funes, as Valentine, is absolutely gorgeous and intriguing. The Blue Underground version of this film has the censored scenes that were cut out in the extra section of the DVD. Of note in that is a full frontal nude scene from Carroll Baker.
Also, A twenty two minute interview with Corrado Farina who, though no great surprise, says Jean-Luc Goddard was an inspiration of his. I saw this in my local video store for a while, and only rented it after finally reading the reviews here, and I must say, it was quite bizaare. Valentina is a photographer who, one night, has a run-in with a mysterious woman named Baba Yaga. Baba Yaga asks to borrow something from Valentina, promising to give it back the next morning.
I have no idea what the thing was--I decided to just forget it. Valentina agrees, and after a very odd photoshoot with one model the next morning, she finds Baba Yaga at her door, with the item as promised. The woman also inspects Valentina's camera, and then everything Valentina photographs is plagued by something horrible. Things continue, including a creepy photoshoot at Baba Yaga's home, the gift of a strange leather-clad doll named Annette, all leading up to an extremely bizaare ending.
Definitely not for everyone, but still an okay movie. Fans of giallo thrillers will like this very offbeat, trippy movie. I didn't really understand the meaning behind Valentina's SS-influenced dreams, and in fact, they were quite disturbing. The bottomless pit in Baba Yaga's house was a nice touch, and actually, the house in total was quite creepy. Annette was very weird, the living doll. And the ending--that was the oddest part of the whole movie!
As I said, not for everyone, but still entertaining. And am I the only one who thought the music was nothing special?
Sorry, I didn't get what all the hype was about from the other reviewers. Still, check this movie out if you can find it. During the late '60s and early '70s, Carroll Baker expatriated from the United States and made some horror flicks in Italy. Among these giallo movies was "Baba Yaga". It portrays a fashion photographer Isabelle De Funes getting involved with an otherworldly older woman Baker. The title identifies who she is, but people unfamiliar with Slavic mythology may not know who that is. Baba Yaga is a witch in Slavic, especially Russian, folklore. Depending on which story, she can be good or evil, but they usually portray her living in a house standing on chicken legs.
We in the west usually mispronounce the second part of her name: But let's not get off topic. I liked this movie. It was sort of half horror, half look at the mod culture in early s Italy although it seems like all the giallo movies back then showed it. And of course, there's plenty of eroticism to go around; as far as I'm concerned, Carroll Baker embodies pun intended eroticism.
Also starring George Eastman. From the beginning, with a credits sequence set against a background of stark, stylized black and white illustrations while we hear the driving yet haunting theme song, this movie grabs you. If you are already a fan of the "giallo" genre, you will be delighted by this film. If you're not, or don't know the genre, don't expect much in the way of a coherent plot or continuity, just lose yourself in the studied weirdness of the individual sequences. Farina in "Valentina and I", included in the DVD tells he was a very good friend of Crepax himself, he really seemed to understand the linguistical narrative that Crepax does in his fumettos, and he had the firm intention of doing the best adaptation posible of the Baba Yaga storyline trying to avoid bad results as Modesty Blaise and Barbarella.
Then, how in hell has the movie ended being so bad as those same movies he refers to? While there are some interesting aproximations the photomontage used directly from a layout of the fumetto and intertext to the work of Crepax some pages of Bianca are readed by Valentina and Arno, or the including of Crepax himself as a character the feeling of it all its just wrong. First, athmosphere is not that of a terror movie as is promoted, but is more like a campy pop sixties feel, including music and the cinematography.
Second, Isabelle de Funes was the worst actress they could have choosen to play Valentina: This film might disappoint horror fans, or it may delight them. But it should thrill fans of Fellini, Roeg, Goddard and other artists who pushed the limits of cinema. Italian director Corrado Farina weaves a stunning tapestry of imagery, dexterously jumping from crisp pop design to bled-dry Goth color to full blown experimental cinema. Story involves a stylish fashion photographer who attracts the attention of a beautiful witch. In the title role, Carroll Baker looks like the star of a haute Goth wet dream.
As intense and free-form as the imagery and editing get, the story structure is solid and the film is entertaining. If you love intelligent artsy horror films like Roeg's "Don't Look Now" you should definitely check this out. This is an interesting film, and one that is wildly uneven but still ultimately watchable.
Many of the flaws are admitted by Farina in his interview on the Blue Underground DVD, especially the casting of Carroll Baker as Baba Yaga, which simply doesn't work, but there are other flaws which he doesn't mention. For one, it has that strange quasi-conservative response to sex that tainted the work of many so-called liberal artists of this period. For all its attempts to be daring and original, it always seems to fall back on a relatively conventional framework, culminating in a deeply disappointing ending.
It's also full of bizarre non-sequiturs, such as Guido Crepax, author of the graphic novels upon which the film is based, appearing as himself, and Valentina even reading pages from them at one point pages which seem to feature herself - had they been handled better, these ideas might actually have been very effective. Still, the film has a jaunty atmosphere and, despite being savaged by the censors, has a suitably erotic undercurrent. Sure this isn't the typical horror wanna be film with blood, gore, no plot, etc but this is a very deep movie with multitudes of depth, innuendo and symbolism.
Valentina the photographer finds out she is being used by the witch to cast onto others. The film is subtitled from the original version into english but isn't really too noticable. You could watch this movie over and over and find new details each time.
From Baba Yaga to Rasputin: A to Z of Calcutta's Soviet Union connection
Even the deleted scene on the DVD was interesting, with the anti-American flag burning senitments of the 70's cut out for american distribution. A neat piece of film history indeed. If, judging by the title, you're expecting a film about a cannibalistic old lady who lives in a hut with chicken legs in a Russian forest, than you'll certainly by surprised, for the only similarities between this film and the old folktale is having an old witch who preys on the young.
Corrado Farina's "Baba Yaga" is a delirious art-house gem adapted from Guido Crepax's "Valentina" comics, which centers around the sex life of a popular fashion photographer. Though Corrado Farina made only about four films in his career, none of which were very well praised, he really shows his potential as filmmaker in this one, whose unique vision of horror cinema stands out from almost every single genre film made in Italy at that time most of which consisted of cheap Bava imitations. As a matter of fact, it's much more like something Godard would do had he done a horror film, and not surprisingly, Farina himself admitted that the French maestro was indeed an inspiration for this one.
Though reportedly it wasn't an easy shoot, Farina really believed in the project, and one can really see how this film is indeed a labor of love.
Baba Yaga (film) - Wikipedia
There's something of an 'extra care' and finesse that lacks in so many films of it's kind that were released around the same time even the dialog which is usually laughable, is well written. Also, he makes full advantage of comic book motifs in translating the story to screen, with some scenes framed just like a comic book as well as some other interesting editing techniques. Another bonus for the film is a great cast that, though weren't exactly what the direction originally intended, do very well in their jobs.
Other highlights include Piero Umiliani's beautiful score which often shifts from haunting piano melodies to funky disco motifs, as well as the very disturbing and spine-chilling nightmare sequences, which resembles a cross between Fellini at his darkest and Roman Polanski. Still, the film is not without it's flaws.
For one, I just can't take that dominatrix doll too seriously, and also, the ending felt too rushed and anti-climatic, which is a shame really, considering there was so much suspense build up for what turned out to be not much really. I suspect the ending problem might have something to do with the producers' total butchering of the film before it was released though Shameless' cut is probably the closest thing we'll ever get to Farina's original vision, there's still lots of stuff that has been cut out or changed. Baba Yaga is also cast as a Mother Earth figure, having an influence on the natural world through three of her servants as witnessed by Vasilisa.
Twice Vasilisa sees three riders—the first white, the second red, and the third black. Upon asking who they were, Baba Yaga replies that they are Day, the sun, and Night, respectively, each controlled by her, each a servant of hers. In this instance, the reader can see the span of Baba Yaga's power, further implying that she could have used much gentler means in the dismissal of Vasilisa's family but chose not to.
Thus, the children return home in one piece, Baba Yaga forfeiting her search when it grows too difficult. She might otherwise have not bothered the children if they had not bothered her first. Thus, despite being considered a deity akin to Mother Nature, the natural world turns on her because of their suffering at her hands. Again, this evidences why scholars still find her so difficult to place in any one category and why she ranges many.
It is because of the elusive nature of her character that Baba Yaga remains such an intriguing mythical individual, and continues to be discussed and researched by scholars. She adds a level of mystery and uncertainty to each of the tales she takes part in, as the reader is uncertain until her final action whether her intentions will be villainous or redemptive.
Though this dilemma of whether she is good or evil is only one of many considerations, it lays the basis for her analysis throughout Slavic literature. Illustration of a hag-like, long-nosed Baba Yaga of Slavic legend. The Baba Yaga, flying through the air with her terrified captive. Baba or more soft - Babushka means Grandmother in Russian. She is not Mother Earth's archetype, of course.
She is just an old witch that lives in the deep dark forest. Courage, pure heart and honesty - that's what usually makes people win over her powers. But in some cases, a Hero has to act like her in order to escape for example - "Tale about Tereshecka" - horrible script, I wouldn't tell it to children. In Serbia she is called Baba Roga Grandma Horn , since she had demonic appearance ugly face and horns.
It is told that she lives in deserted watermills, wells and woods. And like you said, she really liked children. Btw jagoda in serbian is strawberry and like some other fruits, it is a real female name if you want to know that is.
Baba Yaga may be a memory embodying the Kven people whom the Slavs encountered during their push northward and westward during the Middle Ages. Adam von Bremen speaks of an Amazon-like tribe that inhabited parts of Finland. Baba might either have been a remnant of this tribe or a member of the related Sami people, who still inhabit Finnmark.
Her characteristics match with those of other ancient female deities of the surrounding region, such as Perchta, Hulda, Berchta, the Disir, Frau Holle, Holda, the Cailleach, and others. Like nature, these deities can work for or against a person, depending on how heedful that person is to the needs around them. Baba and these other deities are far more than obstacles.
They are a manifestation of the context of life itself, which throws into stark relief the trials that make or break character. They are catalysts and teachers. Baba doesn't kill the family, the fire in the skull does. She simply gave what was requested. Baba is simply a walking contingency theory. In her world, morals take care of themselves. All the info above is just a first, outer level of understanding Russian folklore and myfology. It's not a secret anymore the deep relation between old Sanskrit forms and Russian language and especially its northern dialects. The pagan traditions are strong enough.
Thus Baba means an old woman - right. But Did and Baba considers as first man and woman, ansciestors. So Baba might be recognised as a feminine helper and she was. Which is bound with a fire or agni "agon' -into Russian. Also there were rituals for ill and sick children where kids were settled into big warm oven, stove filled with medical herbs e.
What about the transport of baba. Its original name is "stupa", wich is right to translate as a mortar. But the word stupa is relative to sansktit again and to Buddhists tradition of stupas. Baba yaga uses magical powers known in india as siddhas. In the city I live there is a river Yagorba. Till 12th century AC here was a religious center of pagan, pre-Christian believes. Register to become part of our active community, get updates, receive a monthly newsletter, and enjoy the benefits and rewards of our member point system OR just post your comment below as a Guest. By bringing together top experts and authors, this archaeology website explores lost civilizations, examines sacred writings, tours ancient places, investigates ancient discoveries and questions mysterious happenings.