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1) Troicha 
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Thursday, 14 March 2019 12:35 PM Permalink

Martial Law 4 Review

The final film (as of yet) in the Martial Law series, it picks up the plot from where Martial Law 3 left off. A government investigation is occurring with regards to the torturous interrogation and fraudulent conviction of Benedetta Bernardelli (Lyen Parker).

The beginning storyline is a bunch of blah blah about how Benedetta Bernardelli was unfairly convicted and tortured and how “outraged” the crackpot officials who oversaw the whole process are. The only good part so far is the scene with Lyen and the host where he enters her cell and says that her release will come soon after her final set of 50 lashes. She is covered in dirt and the “scars” of her previous two whippings were evident. The look in her eyes when she realizes he means to have her whipped again……full of righteous indignation and her lip trembles in fury as she glares up at him in disbelief. “YOU KNOW I’M INNOCENT YOU HEARTLESS BASTARD!”

Of course, the lowest “man” on the totem pole is the one who suffers the most: Isla Styxx (Lady Ariel). She is made the scapegoat for her superior’s aggression and incompetence. She is tortured and subjected to the same “justice” as Lt. Bernardelli was. Her accomplice, the courier, played by Vivien, is also whipped. Eventually she is sentenced to 100 lashes and the courier gets 50.

The first whipping scene consisted of Lyen’s final set of 50 lashes, this time there is no bit placed in her mouth, so her vocal reactions are totally unobscured. Even after the first stroke of the whip lands, she is quite loud; and by the time the fifth lash is complete, she really begins to howl. The 25th lash is particularly severe and Lyen’s arms writhe in her bonds as if she was trying to rip them out of the wall and her sobbing just gets worse and worse. At stroke 46, Ariel again leans forward and lashes Lyen harshly. After the 50th lash, Lyen’s right arm is released and she slumps sideways to the ground, Ariel just stares at her stone-faced with no remorse…….she just demolished Lyen for the second time and did not give a fuck!

The next scene is of Vivien’s character, she receives 50 lashes on back and ass. As she was new, she received a softy whipping and only starts to really react to the whip towards the end. She sobs quite nicely throughout the whipping and is so cute with her little upturned nose! The best part is around her last 10 lashes, especially after Lyen announces stroke 47 and Vivien leans down towards her left in anticipation of the whip vainly trying to escape.

Later after more fluff scenes...we finally get to Ariel’s whipping; Lyen’s vengeance has finally arrived! She is utterly merciless. Both Lyen and Amanda take turns flogging poor Ariel. The whipping begins with Lyen lashing her harshly, both the angry-bitch look on Lyen’s face and the severe music playing provide an excellent start. Indeed Lyen strikes poor Ariel so hard that she is shuddering and panting even after the 4th stroke. After the 35th lash, Ariel’s head snaps up and she howls even louder than before. At stroke 52 Ariel’s head snaps back again and then she fell forward on top of the wooden bar, she starts hacking and coughing and for the remainder of her whipping can barely breathe. After stroke 60, well that’s when the whipping really gets interesting as she starts to collapse. Unfortunately, Ariel does not survive all the way to 100 lashes, she “faints” far sooner and slumps to the ground. The executioners unbind her and she falls to the floor, lying motionless for several minutes…..sentence completed!

Overall, this film failed to live up to the “standard” set by its predecessor: simplicity is best! Martial Law 3 was simple and straightforward, especially for a Mood Pictures production; this film felt “over-engineered” and was unnecessarily complicated.

Viewers should do themselves a favor, watch Lyen’s whipping and then Ariel’s, skip Vivien’s (at least the first time) and then they should watch the storyline a few times (they will have to in order for it to make sense). That way (after watching the two best parts of this film), they will at least be impressed before they get bored and bewildered by the annoying storyline. The storyline isn’t hugely complicated; it was just contradictory and backwards. Frankly, the poorly-synced plot gives a feeling of hastiness, as if this was thrown together and not edited properly. Also, there was no kangaroo court tribunal like the first film, there was no scene where Ariel’s character was formally sentenced to 100 lashes and Vivien’s to 50.

The highlights of this film were, of course, the whippings of Lyen and Ariel, together; they made this film worth your money. Of the two, Ariel’s was the better, not only for Ariel’s highly entertaining reactions but also for Lyen’s vicious bitch-face and savagery with the whip. Considering what we know of Lyen’s personality (a very nice person), her reactions could almost be considered over the top in a way, but in terms of her character’s revenge on her tormentor, she was spot-on! Cruelty wasn’t even the right word for her performance; this was pure, brutal revenge at its best!

Two out of the three whippings here were executed with the submissive tied to a horizontal wooden bar. Certainly, it was not as good as the Classic AOH position, yet, it also allowed the submissive decent freedom of movement, so in both Vivien’s and Ariel’s whipping scenes we got to observe them wriggling around and twitching under the whip. The whipping of Vivien however (and the mere presence of her character), was unnecessary for the film other than to introduce us viewers to a new model. It does make sense that Ariel’s character would have had a partner in framing Lyen, yet Vivien’s whipping did nothing for this film as far as I am concerned. Had the film been comprised only of Ariel and Lyen’s whippings, with a more coherent storyline, it would have been another “A” worthy Mood Pictures film.

Another amusing scene in the movie was when Ariel was told to strip naked. She hesitated and was told to move faster. As she stripped naked, her white panties were revealed and then she took them off and covered her breasts and pussy with her hands. This conferred to me a sense of innocence and shyness (neither of which accurately describes Ariel). BOTH Ariel and her character (Ilsa Styxx) deserve to be beaten and tortured. Excellent contrast this scene presented. (Remember, Ilsa Styxx was, in fact, guilty of framing Lyen - along with the courier).

Ariel, in her character as Isla Styxx, tormentor of Lyen, was more brutal-looking in this film as opposed to ML3. Her facial reactions were harsher and angrier as opposed to the emotionless, disinterested look in the former film. During Lyen’s whipping, after the fifth lash landed and before the 6th one, we get a glimpse of the real Ariel as she almost broke character. Ariel isn’t an emotionless, disinterested corpse, she’s a vicious bitch! She smiles evilly and the bright lights perfectly illuminated her black eyes as they glittered with sadism; she really enjoyed what she was doing here. Right after that, as she reared back her arm to deliver her sixth lash, she immediately gritted her teeth and reverted back to the cold-brutal executioner. Her performance in this film, both as executioner and victim was excellent!

The lighting and ambiance were weaker in ML4 than in ML3, along with the storyline, they made up the weak points for this film. Regardless of whether you prefer dark or brighter lighting, the undeniable fact is that darker lighting makes the film seem more severe and oppressing overall. ML3 was dark, brutal and soul-crushing, ML4 failed to recreate that effect to the same extent. Lady Ariel’s face was more visible in this film with the light illuminating her face, which will please many viewers. I, however, must complain, as I felt the shadows on her face (present in ML3) made her look more ominous and intense.

Final Grade: B
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