Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

Crimes of Passion (1984)


Written by Tim Dirks

Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

Crimes of Passion (1984)

In British director Ken Russell's neon-lit, dark, 'guilty pleasure' cult tale and erotic thriller - with the tagline: "Her name is China Blue. She is watched. She is worshipped. And, she must remain a mystery":

  • the main protagonist: a moonlighting, kinky LA prostitute named China Blue (Kathleen Turner) - who at night wore a platinum wig and a light-blue silky dress (and frequented the Paradise Isle Hotel for tricks), and by day worked as a prim but workaholic sporting fashion designer named Joanna Crane
  • China Blue's entrance in the film: with male client Carl (John G. Scanlon) who insisted that she role-play for him a beauty pageant contestant named Miss Liberty 1984 as he was kneeling between her spread-eagled legs. She euphemistically told about how she could blow his "instrument" - and she tantalized him with her sex-talk while unzipping his pants: "First I unzip the case, and take out the instrument very carefully. I'm very gentle. And then I run my little hand all over it. Up and down, and up and down. And then I-I fondle it so softly, so softly. Hmm, I love the look of it. Oh, I love the feel of it, so smooth and firm. Oh, I love to wrap my fingers around it and tenderly caress it. Well, I like to lift it to my mouth and wrap my lips around it. And then I just wait for that sweet, sweet music to come pourin' out."
  • her next client had a sexual fetish of pretending to stalk and attack her, before "raping" her in her room in the Paradise Isle Hotel; during sex, she imagined Japanese erotic art prints or other exaggerated drawings of enlarged male genitals
Hooker China Blue (Kathleen Turner)
One Client's Rape Fetish
Japanese Erotic Art
  • also notable were the scenes with deranged, stalking psychotic Reverend believing he was China Blue's savior - the perverse, ranting, peeping-tom, self-proclaimed Reverend Peter Shayne (Anthony Perkins) with strange erotic fantasies; he believed he was China Blue's savior ("Save your soul, whore!").
  • China Blue's description of her profession to the Reverend, that was designed to completely fulfill any of her clients' fantasies: "This is a fantasy business, Reverend. You can have any truth you want....Why don't you f--k me? That'll save me...What disease? I'm healthy as a horse. I'm fit as a fiddle and ready for cock...I'm Cinderella, Cleopatra, Goldie Hawn, Eva Braun, I'm Little Miss Muffin, I'm Pocahontas, I'm whoever you want me to be, Reverend"
  • her shock when she discovered the Reverend's razor-tipped, chrome-steel dildo (dubbed "Superman") in his doctor's bag of sex toys
  • art-time private investigator and security expert Bobby Grady's (John Laughlin) escape from a dull 11-year marriage to Amy (Annie Potts), who faked her orgasms, substituted by his intense, obsessive, erotic relationship with China Blue; during her first sexual encounter with him (for $50), she fantasy role-played as a flight attendant: ("Good evening. Welcome to China Blue Airlines Flight 69, non-stop service to Paradise. We'll be taking off shortly. I'll be unbuckling your belt and seeing that big bird rise and rise, finally settling into the comfort only this wide body can provide. We're here to serve you. Please remember that although we may run out of Pan Am coffee, we'll never run out of T-W-A-Tea"); she sucked on his bare toe and then had sexual intercourse with him in multiple positions (viewed as silhouettes behind a gauzy curtain), while they were peeped upon by the Reverend
China Blue's S&M Sex Scene with Policeman
  • later in a dominatrix S & M scene (deleted from some versions to avoid an X-rating), a policeman (Randall Brady) was handcuffed to a bed and then brutalized and sodomized with his own nightstick; he bled from his restrained wrists and from her spiked stiletto heels
Twist Ending, Resulting in the Death of the Reverend
  • the twist ending in which China Blue was 'saved' by the threatening Reverend involving a role-reversal (and costume-reversal); the character wearing China Blue's dress (presumably Joanna) was stabbed in the back by the razor-tipped dildo/vibrator. However, the Reverend was wearing the China Blue dress and a wig, while she was wearing the Reverend's outfit - a costume twist. She stabbed him as he threatened to assault Grady (who had arrived to save Joanna) with a pair of scissors; the Reverend's death were accompanied with his parting words: "Goodbye, China Blue"
  • the film's ending: Grady attended a marital therapy group where he admitted he was in a new relationship with Joanna: "I'm here tonight because I wanted to finally start telling the truth. My wife and I, we have split up for good. That's right. Me, the Boy Scout. I just never had the guts to admit the truth, that Amy and I had just stopped loving each other. There's nobody to blame. That's just what happened. Then, I met this woman, Joanna. She saved my life. We're together now. I'm not sure if it's gonna work out. We don't have a, a whole hell of a lot in common, other than the fact that, that we both need help - and each other. The thing, you see, that scared me the most during my marriage was just admitting that I was scared and letting Amy down. Well, I can't pretend anymore. I was scared s--tless to come back here. I told Joanna. And she took me in her arms and she said, 'It's OK to be scared.' I felt stronger and freer and more like a man than I've ever felt before in my life. Then we f--ked our brains out."

China Blue
(Kathleen Turner) as Miss Liberty 1984

Rev. Peter Shayne
(Anthony Hopkins)

The Reverend's Dildo: "Is this a Cruise Missile or a Pershing?"

Grady's First Trick with China Blue

Grady's Concluding Confession to Therapy Group


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