"Decrucify him or I'll melt your face!"
Description: Jane Fonda as Barbarella threatens The Great Tyrant (Anita Pallenberg) unless she removes Pygar the Angel (John Philip Law) from a torture device in the science fiction movie Barbarella (1968).
When a young scientist named Durand Durand vanishes while on a trip to the North Star in an uncharted region of the Tau Ceti System during the 41st century, Dianthus, President of Earth and Rotating Premier of the Sun System (Claude Dauphin) dispatches Barbarella, a sexy five star, double rated, astro-navigatrix earth girl to retrieve the 25-year-old scientist who is the inventor of the Positronic Ray, a deadly weapon which is capable of destroying entire planets by sending it targets into the fourth dimension.
|Barbarella:||Weapon? Why would anyone want to invent a weapon?|
|President:||How should I know?|
|Barbarella:||I mean, the universe has been pacified for centuries, Sir.|
|President:||That we know of it. The trouble is we don't know anything about Tau Ceti or its inhabitants.|
|Barbarella:||You mean they could still be living in a primitive state of neurotic irresponsibility?|
|President:||Precisely. And if they are, and if they have learned from this young scientist the unspeakable secret of the Positronic ray, well, it will give them the power to shatter the loving union of the universe.|
|Barbarella:||But that could mean archaic insecurity.|
|Barbarella:||You mean selfish competition...|
|President:||I mean war. Bloody conflict among entire tribes.|
|Barbarella:||I don't believe it.|
|President:||Neither do I. But we can't take the chance.|
|Barbarella:||Something must be done.|
|President:||Yes, and YOU are the girl who must do it.|
To detect Durand Durand, Barbarella is given a portable brain wave detector. In his presence, a light on the device will glow and an alarm sound. The device also has a tongue box to translate alien languages. For self-preservation, Barbarella is given an assortment of ancient weapons that were borrowed from the Museum of Conflict.
As Barbarella approaches the planet Lythion, her spacecraft loses control and crashes. She is found by a group of children who delight in torturing her with mechanized dolls with razor-sharp teeth.
Luckily, Barbarella is saved by Mark Hand (Ugo Tognazzi), a “Catchman” who catches evil children. For saving her life, the Catchman asks to have sex the old fashioned way with Barbarella. Barbarella agrees and finds to her delight that the old ways are much better.
In the future, Psychocardiograms are used to match up compatible sex partners. To have sex, Exaltation Transference Pellets are swallowed to reach heights of sexual ecstasy. The pills were developed because physical bonding was "distracting and proved to be a danger to maximum efficiency."
Barbarella continues her journey and encounters the Labyrinth, a place on the outskirts of the city of SoGo where people no longer wanted are quartered. One of those banished to this prison colony is Pygar, a blind angelic creature. He has lost the will to fly, but when he has sex with Barbarella, he once again takes to the sky. Then Barbarella and Pygar enter the city and meet the Concierge (Milo O'Shea) who helps The Great Tyrant rule her subjects.
Beneath the City of SoGo is the Mathmos, a sinister bubbling lake of liquid energy which provides warmth, light and life itself to the citizens in exchange for feeding off their negative psychic vibrations. It thrives on feelings from despair to debauchery. Hence the leader of the city, The Great Tyrant fosters an atmosphere of evil to satiate the creatures great hunger. Residual fumes from the creature entice people to act out their evil deeds.
|The Great Tyrant:||Tell me, my fancy, fuzzy freak: What do you think of, when you make love to Barbarella?|
|Pygar:||MAKE love? I do not understand.|
|The Great Tyrant:||Don't be coy with me, you are in no position. If only you
had one eye in your head you could see what a delight I am, my face, my body, all my parts are a delight. An exquisite delight.
|Pygar:||What is it you want?|
|The Great Tyrant:||I shall share my delights with you. You shall make love to
|Pygar:||An angel doesn't MAKE love. An angel IS love.|
|The Great Tyrant:||Then you're a dead duck. - Guards! To the Mathmos with this winged fruitcake.|
"Yes, Pygar. He has escaped the labyrinth. CRIME! He has destroyed twelve of my black guards. CRIME! And he dares to deprive me of a pleasure unique in SoGo, an Earthling. CRIME! CRIME! You want your fine-feathered friend? Look, there he is."
When The Great Tyrant places Pygar on a crucifixion torture device, Barbarella threatens to kill the Black Queen (who calls Barbarella "Pretty-Pretty"), but the Concierge calls her bluff because he notices her gun has lost its power charge.
As punishment for daring to kill the queen, the Concierge places Barbarella in the Excessive Machine, a torture device that is designed to bring its occupant to such sexual ecstasy that it kills them.
"I'll do things to you that are beyond all known philosophies! Wait until I get my devices!" - Durand Durand
But Barbarella is no ordinary girl and despite pushing the machine to is limits, Barbarella's sexual libido is too much for the machine which fails. It is at this time that Barbarella learns that the Concierge is actually Durand Durand whose youthful appearance had been sapped by the evil Mathmos.
To save her life, Barbarella makes a deal with Durand Durand (who wants to depose the queen) to provide him with an invisible key to the queen's dream chamber. Barbarella was given a duplicate key by the Dildano (David Hemmings), the leader of the Resistance who also wants the queen dead. Entering the dream chamber, Durand Durand steals the queen's copy of the key as well and locks Barbarella inside. Since only the queen is permitted in the sleep chamber, the Mathmos retaliates and begins to destroy them.
While Durand Durand takes over the Black Queen's throne, the Resistance movement attacks the city using earth weapons provided by Barbarella. Angered, Durand Durand uses his Positronic Ray to destroy the attacking forces. Meanwhile, the vengeful queen releases the Mathmos to kill everyone in the city.
The Mathmos, however, finds Barbarella so innocent that it surrounds her with a protective bubble to avoid contamination. ("You are so good you made the Mathmos vomit!"). Luckily, the evil queen is encapsulated as well and both of them rise through the fury of the Mathmos to the surface where they are rescued by Pygar who flies them to Barbarella's spacecraft, now repaired courtesy of Professor Ping (Marcel Marceau).
As the Mathmos destroys the City of SoGo and Durand Durand, Pygar flies from the ruins with Barbarella under one arm and The Great Tyrant under the other. Aloft amidst the clouds, Barbarella asks Pygar why he saved the evil queen after all the terrible things she did to him? Pygar replies, "An angel has no memory."
Note: Professor Ping of the Labyrinth was played my renown mime Marcel Marceau. This was his first speaking role.
"Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch," the password used by Dildano, the leader of the Resistance is based on the name of a small Welsh town on the island of Anglesey in Wales.