The Perils of Gwendoline in the Land of the Yik-Yak
English-language theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Just Jaeckin|
|Produced by||Jean-Claude Fleury|
|Screenplay by||Just Jaeckin|
|Based on||The Adventures of Sweet Gwendoline|
by John Willie
|Music by||Pierre Bachelet|
|Distributed by||The Samuel Goldwyn Company|
|8 February 1984|
The Perils of Gwendoline in the Land of the Yik-Yak (original title Gwendoline) is a 1984 French action comedy directed by Just Jaeckin, written by Jaeckin and John Willie and starring Tawny Kitaen and Brent Huff. The film is loosely based on the bondage-themed comics of Willie and on the character of Sweet Gwendoline. François Schuiten worked as a graphic designer for the movie.
Captured by a trio of thieves at a Chinese port, Gwendoline (Kitaen), a courageous but naïve girl, is sold to a local casino-brothel owner, but, rescued by Willard (Huff), a mercenary adventurer, she is reunited with her maid, Beth (Zabou), after the latter's abduction by the same thieves who had earlier kidnapped Gwendoline. Hired to transport an illegal cargo, Willard reluctantly agrees to take both women with him after Beth, withholding information vital to his livelihood, promises to divulge it only if he becomes their guide. Gwendoline, who has come to China to capture the butterfly that eluded her father, who had staked his professional reputation as a scientist on obtaining the insect, offers Willard $2,000 to take her and Beth with him to the land of the Yik-Yak, in which the butterfly may be found.
After escaping from the cannibal tribe of Kiops, the trio find the butterfly, but as she is about to capture it, Beth is captured and Gwendoline and Willard must enter an all-women tribe's underground lair to rescue the maid. The tribe is the vestige of the city of Pikaho, a primary diamond mining centre, which was swallowed by a volcanic eruption in the 12th century. Afterwards, the entire male population perished due to a disease spread by the eruption, and Pikaho turned into an all-women society considered nothing more than a legend. To ensure the survival of Pikaho, its Queen (Bernadette Lafont) allows a victor among them to mate with any man who visits or is captured by the tribe. Aided by Beth and the Queen's henchman, D'Arcy (Jean Rougerie), Gwendoline, disguised as a Pikaho warrior, wins this right.
While Gwendoline and Willard make love before the Queen, D'Arcy activates the volcano and he, the Queen, and the citizens of Pikaho are killed as Gwendoline, Beth and Willard escape. In the process, Willard is able to capture the elusive butterfly.
- Tawny Kitaen as Gwendoline
- Zabou Breitman as Beth
- Brent Huff as Willard
- Bernadette Lafont as the Queen
- Jean Rougerie as D'Arcy
Severin Films has re-released the 88-minute U.S. release of The Perils of Gwendoline in the Land of the Yik-Yak and has also released a 106-minute Gwendoline: Unrated Director's Cut based on the French release.
- The Perils of Gwendoline in the Land of the Yik-Yak on IMDb
- The Perils of Gwendoline in the Land of the Yik-Yak at Rotten Tomatoes
- Gwendoline at AllMovie
- Movie stills
- The Adventures of Sweet Gwendoline edited by J.B. Rund.(second edition, revised and enlarged) New York: Bélier Press, 1999.ISBN 0-914646-48-6