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One is never too old to appreciate true erotica in the movies, or on TV. But there are a couple of problems. First, one would have to find it. That becomes a problem after one understands what true erotica actually is, and that too often mere pornography is offered as an unworthy substitute. Lots of soft porn is in the offing at the movies or on TV, but not much true erotica. Not like the final scene in the BBC series The Heat of the Sun where former Scotland Yard detective Albert Tyburn (Trevor Eve) and the attractive, strong-willed biplane pilot Emma Fitzgerald (Susannah Harker) finally, after several episodes of struggling with military politics and crime fighting in Kenya, raise a glass and embrace in the warm romance of an African sunset. The swirling camera angles and the anticipation that he might finally kiss her are unrequited as the scene closes, except of course where it really belongs, in our imagination.
Alicia Colon finds true erotica in the 1932 movie Tarzan the Ape Man. Before you laugh out loud please read what she says about it. Here is a sample:
Erotica should be what arouses sensuality and sexual desire in the imagination. Pornography is a cheap substitute to genuine sensuality by replacing it with naked thrusts and bursts of faux gasps of passion. How trite compared to visions created in our minds stimulated by a simple touch, look or gesture. Last night I watched the TCM channel which ran a surprising example of true erotica-Tarzan-the Ape Man.
Laugh if you will but Johnny Weismuller and Maureen O’Sullivan generate more heat in this 1932 action adventure film then any of the actors and actresses starring buck naked and writhing in today’s features.
UPDATE: The scene in the Michael Mann directed movie Collateral where cab driver Max (Jamie Foxx) picks up the fare of his life in Annie (Jada Pinckett Smith) a beautiful young assistant United States attorney on her way to the office may be one of the most romantic scenes in a movie I’ve seen lately. The murmuring growl of Hands of Time by Groove Armada on the soundtrack helped immensely. You fully expect them to become lovers, but that’s not in the script. We don’t see Annie again until… well, rent or buy the DVD.