Fact-based story about the court proceedings that followed Cincinnati art museum director Dennis Barrie after his decision to display a controversial art exhibit by photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. The proceedings start with an inflamed County Sheriff who is determined to put Barrie in jail. A grand jury established to determine whether the sexually explicit photographs were obscene found seven of the pictures to possibly be obscene. The seven pictures depicted nude children, a man ramming his fist up another man’s anus, and man with his finger in his penis. Other pictures in the exhibit did depict explicit nudity and sexual connotation. An obviously biased judge made derisive decisions throughout the trial. The strain of the trial also placed Barrie’s marriage under duress, which ultimately led to his wife divorcing him, and led to Barrie’s children being derided and physically attacked by their classmates.
John Sacksteder <[email protected]>
User Reviews: A look at the 1990 trial of Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center director Dennis Barrie, who was accused of promoting pornography, ‘Dirty Pictures’ turns into An Interesting Watch! Also, The Always-Amazing James Woods delivers a yet another Excellent Performance!
‘Dirty Pictures’ Synopsis: A Cincinnati museum director goes on trial in 1990 for exhibiting sadomasochistic photographs taken by Robert Mapplethorpe.
‘Dirty Pictures’ may be not be flawless, but it sure is engaging & grasping. It talks about exploitation, freedom, sadomasochism & power. Ilene Chaiken’s Screenplay is engaging & thought provoking. Frank Pierson’s Direction is effective. Cinematography, Editing & Art Design, are fine.
Performance-Wise: As mentioned, Woods gives a yet another Excellent Performance! As Dennis Barrie, The Two-Time Academy-Award-Nominated Veteran Actor delivers a performance, that’s so accurate & detailed, its hard to point out any flaws whatsoever! Diana Scarwid is competent. Craig T. Nelson does a fair job. Others fill the bill.
On the whole, ‘Dirty Pictures’ is worth a watch.