Plot: Seymour Love (Jamie Gillis) is an author and an expert on sex, two fields he has combined and found great success with. In an adult film theater in Paris, he happens upon a beautiful young woman named Misty Beethoven (Constance Money), who offers her services for a price, but the two can’t negotiate a deal. After she provides some hand relief to an old man dressed like Napoleon however, Misty is approached again by Love, who offers her some cash, but only seems interested in information. He soon realizes she is the worst prostitute he’s ever encountered, which leads to a bet that he can turn her into a seduction expert. The wager between Love and his friend Geraldine (Jaqueline Beaudant) is that he must train Misty and make her into the Golden Rod Girl, the center of attention at an infamous high society event. Misty can’t even give good head and seems closed off to anything outside of straight, basic sex, but Love is convinced he can work his magic. But before she can make a splash and win the bet for Love, Misty will need to learn how to seduce, how to please, and how to manage the needs of many, many men…
Entertainment Value: In most circles, The Opening of Misty Beethoven is hailed as the best adult film ever created. The movie won over legions of fans and was even acclaimed by critics, a rare feat for hardcore porn. The narrative is an obvious spin on Pygmalion, as Dr. Love tries to turn Misty from an ice queen into a sex goddess, but of course, things go beyond the simple bet involved. As directed by Radley Metzger (as Henry Paris), this movie is light years beyond the porn stereotype, boasting polished visuals, good performances, and a great pace, not to mention ample sex. This review covers the X rated version shown in theaters, but even the soft cut of Misty Beethoven holds up as a solid, fun to watch movie. The acting in this one is much better than you’d expect from porn, especially when it comes to the leads. Jamie Gillis turns in his apex performance here, playing against type and nailing the role (no pun intended). Constance Money is on her game as well, with both leads given plenty of chances to do more than just fornicate, and they make the most of those opportunities. The supporting cast is filled with colorful characters as well. Misty Beethoven also works so well because it has a great sense of humor, but it doesn’t force it or overdo the laughs. In short, this movie earned the reputation as porn’s holy grail and it remains a well made, fun to watch movie that should be in any erotic film fan’s collection.
Of course this movie has a metric ton of nakedness, including numerous hardcore sex scenes throughout. Not just the usual sex scenes either, like when characters walk and talk, they pass all manner of sexual activities. So even expositional moments, the movie embraces the erotic elements. The training montages are hilarious, as Misty improves her sexual skills and tries to please three men at once, not to mention seduce a gay man at one point. A wealth of sex is on showcase, with oral, girl on girl, all kinds of positions, and even a pegging sequence during a threesome. And since it involves some education as well, maybe it will improve your lovemaking skills! No blood. The dialogue is quite good, especially the play between Misty and Love. They have some fun back and forth exchanges that are elevated by the effective chemistry between the stars. I also like the odd “man on the street” voice overs, which help track Misty’s rise to sexual power and pay off toward the finale. I have to mention the friendly stewardesses as well, as they have some great lines as well. As for craziness, this movie has some odd moments but rarely feels over the top. The scene with Misty servicing three staff members at once is perhaps the closest the movie comes to slapstick or zaniness. So some offbeat humor, but overall this one remains fairly grounded in most respects.
Overall Insanity: 1/10