Fetishes Cover Have you ever wondered why some people are kinky whilst other people aren't? You know what I mean by this, right? Normal looking guys and girls who have the need within themselves, to be spanked, stitched up, and then used as... errr... ashtrays. Nick Broomfield knows what I mean by this, as seen in this 84 minute documentary made in 1996.


This documentary is Nick Broomfield's venture into how fetishistic behavior affects those who are involved in this industry, plus those who wish to subscribe to it.

Now this feature starts off by presenting a number of kitch archival clips, which manage to illustrate this form of 'taboo subject' in a rather tame manner. After that, Nick and his crew visit a high class bondage house called 'Pandora's Box', that is located on Fifth Avenue, Manhattan, New York.

Please allow me just say that the very pretty owner of this establishment is called Mistress Raven, and that she allows her mistresses to demonstrate to Nick, with some help from their clients, some of the services they have on offer.

Here is a brief run down on how this documentary plays out:

INDUCTION: There are fifteen mistresses in total employed at this plush place of work, and they charge $175 per season, depending on what a client wishes to have done to them. All of their clients have to fill out application  form first, which will describe what they like / don't like. And in turn they are given a 'safe word' just in case their 'seasons' are too rough for them. 

SHOE FETISH: One of the clients explains to one of the mistresses on the telephone, how he is aroused by stinky and smelly shoes, and how he attempts to get this item of footwear off of people on the street.

SLAVES: Many of the clients want to be submissive slaves to the mistresses in Pandora's Box. Generally, this entails a form of humiliation, both physical and verbal, as well as the clients having to wear an item of clothing that is either confining or flamboyant in appearance. Also, the slaves run a number of errands for the mistresses too; be it domesticated, ritual, or otherwise.

RUBBER: Many of the high powered clients like to be encased in a custom-built rubber suit, and then controlled by the mistresses in a very domineering fashion.

BEHAVIORAL MODIFICATION: Some clients like powerful women to dominate them in a diverse and surreal way. Be it in a clinical setting, be it in a medieval setting, or be it in an exotic setting.

WRESTLING: This one on one wrestling match sees a client and his mistress do what it says on the tin. Most of the times anyway. 

INFANTILISM: Certain clients enjoy being treated like an infant by the mistresses, and they are dressed up accordingly, whilst being incrementally abased at the same time.

SOCIAL-POLITICAL: There are many different forms of social-political fetishes on offer. For example, a white policeman calls up Pandora's Box, and explains to the mistress how he beat up a black suspect in the morning, and then tried to repent for his brash behaviour later that same night, by conjuring up fantasies of the man he did wrong,getting aroused in the process. Also, on a similar note, there are ethnic people who visit the mistresses, and ask to be humiliated by them on racial grounds. One genocidal chap even wanted to have his head stuck down the toilette, and treated like... errr... you know what I mean.
THE PLAYERS: Both at work and at home, Nick manages to get to interview some of the mistresses, and tries to gauge from them if their chosen profession has affected them in any way shape or form. Plus in addition to this, Nick also manages to get to interview some of the clients as well, ascertaining why they feel the need to subscribe to this form of 'relaxation', and how they feel after the event.

First off, please allow me just say that 'Fetishes' isn't what I would call a pornographic or exploitative documentary, although a couple of tit's and dick's are on display in a very blatant manner. Well, I have to be honest with you, huh? It's not 'Mary Poppins' by any stretch of the imagination.

However, what this program is, is a very interesting study on how it affects people associated with profession, as well as for those people who have sadomasochistic tendencies too. For example:

Nick Broomfields Fetishes

DON'T CALL ME BETTY: The owner of Pandora's Box, Mistress Raven, reminds me of a number of things really: A kinky auntie. A cute cloth chick. Cher. A very cleaver businesswoman. And a particularly warm person who is just breathtaking to the eye. Honestly, whatever comes out of her mouth is both insightful and resilient at the same time, because she manages to cut to the chase upon some non-answered questions within this program (such as: How can Nick make this documentary and try to explore what it is all about, if he is not willing to 'take part' somehow?). Plus, another thing that I loved about Mistress Raven; is how she only divulges certain aspects about her own past, without being too standoffish or cold about it. She's a classy lady through and through.

THE MISTESSES: Personally speaking, I found all of the mistresses in 'Fetishes' just full of character. There is Mistress Beatrix: The foxy French lady with the slippery accent. Mistress Delilah: The Italian looking lady with a nice ass and a cleaver job in research. Mistress Natasha: The dark haired Amazonian looking lady with a surly disposition and a lizard in her bed. And Mistress Kathy: The red headed lady with a squint in her eye and a stern demeanour. Conceptually, I found all of these nice ladies to be really diverse in temperament, but share a common bond in both origin and their love for both men and women.

THE CLIENTS: Just like the mistresses in this documentary, I found that most of the clients were very diverse in background (i.e. one was a high powered businessman, whilst another was an old Jewish chap) and shared a common link where their 'proclivity' was concerted. You see, it just came across as if most of them first discovered that they were attracted to 'this sort of thing' at a very early age, and that they use Pandora's Box just as a patient would use a hospital (i.e. a place of care which is able to aide them with their 'ailments'). Simple analogy, I know. But one that sums up how I feel about who the clients are, as well as the mistresses who 'treat' them.

Sexy Legs

Overall, 'Fetishes' was a really nice program to watch. Now compared to some of Nicks other documentaries (click here for his section), I found that the overall presentation of this film was slightly more polished throughout, having a strangely surreal edge to it at times too. Well, it's not every day that you get to see Nick interviewing someone with his head down the toilet, or while they are having their nipples pierced either.

Please note, what I have just said is not meant to be taken in negative way one little bit. To watch this program you have to have an open mind and a tolerant disposition. And if I may quote Atticus Finch from the film 'To Kill A Mockingbird' - Don't judge someone until you've walked a mile in their shoes?


If you would like to find out more information on Pandoras Box, please visit - www.pandorasboxny.com


FETISHES FETISHES Reviewed by David Andrews on May 30, 2012 Rating: 5
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