Get us in your inbox


  • Film
  • 3 out of 5 stars

Time Out says

3 out of 5 stars
Midway between the revisionist homage of ‘Far from Heaven’ and the outright pastiche of ‘Airplane!’, writer- director-star Anna Biller’s debut ‘Viva’ recreates, in exacting detail, the world of pre-‘Deep Throat’ American porn. This was a time when skirts were patterned, breasts were ample and beards were de rigueur, when titans like Russ Meyer titillated the middle classes with lurid tales of drugs, wild parties and orgiastic exploration.

Biller’s film – which tracks the sexual awakening of a straitjacketed suburban housewife – puts a sly feminist spin on the material, taking witty potshots at ’60s attitudes towards female sexuality and male ‘dominance’. It’s all a mite pointless: just because a film’s handicaps are intentional doesn’t make them any less tiresome, and at an epic two hours the stilted dialogue and eye-scorchingly oversaturated film stock threaten to test the patience. But as a self-conscious exercise in kitsch graverobbing, ‘Viva’ succeeds through a combination of cultural nous and sheer aesthetic audacity.
Written by Tom Huddleston

Release Details

  • Rated:18
  • Release date:Friday 15 May 2009
  • Duration:120 mins

Cast and crew

  • Director:Anna Biller
  • Screenwriter:Anna Biller
  • Cast:
    • Jared Sanford
    • Chad England
    • Anna Biller
    • Bridget Brno
You may also like
You may also like