I Am Curious (Yellow) (1967)

i am curious yellow poster erotica
4.0 Overall Score
Story: 3/10
Acting: 6/10
Visuals: 6/10

Edgy and different for the time


Movie Info

Movie Name:  I Am Curious (Yellow)

Studio:  Janus Films

Genre(s):  Drama/Adult

Release Date(s):  October 9, 1967

MPAA Rating:  X


As you can see ma’am, I’m a serious reporter…I’m wearing glasses

Lena Nyman (Lena Nyman) has a vision for a new Sweden.  As a vocal protestor, Lena spends her days trying to change the government of Sweden following the practices of Martin Luther King Jr. while a film crew led by director Vilgot Sjöman (Vilgot Sjöman) records her.  When Lena falls in love with a man named Börje (Börje Ahlstedt) (known as Bill in the English version), she finds someone who like her likes to explore sex.  Unfortunately, Börje has a girlfriend and child, and Lena has decided that it isn’t just casual sex with Börje…which could threaten their relationship and the film itself.

Directed by Vilgot Sjöman, I Am Curious (Yellow) is an adult erotic drama.  The film is considered the start of the New Wave of Swedish films.  The X Rated film was controversial and the target of censorship at its release in 1967.  It is generally considered the first widely distributed film with full frontal male nudity.  I Am Curious (Yellow) is the sister film to I Am Curious (Blue).  Originally the two films were conceived as one long movie but split up.  The Yellow and Blue designation in the titles come from the colors of the Swedish flag.  The movie gained cult status due to the racy sex scenes despite poor reviews, and the Criterion collection released a remastered version of the film (Criterion #180).


We’ll do it here or there, in a lake, in a tree, on the floor…anywhere! (Dr. Seuss version)

I Am Curious (Yellow) was catapulted to fame through court cases trying to prevent its release as pornography.  The case went through the court system and by the time the movie was released, it had gained notoriety in popular culture with even comics like Amazing Spider-Man and Superman’s Girlfriend Lois Lane referenced the film that was meant for adults…and I probably would have rather read a comic than watch this.

It isn’t that the film is the worst thing I’ve seen, but it is very dull…but it is art above substance and shock above substance.  The story is relatively non-existent with much of the story having Lena walk around asking questions about government.  I did find the Martin Luther King, Jr. ties to the story interesting as an American to see how King was portrayed elsewhere in the world.  This storyline takes up more than the first hour of the two hour film and really doesn’t go anywhere…and then the sex happens.

I have to give it to Lena Nyman and Börje Ahlstedt that they let it all hang out…literally.  The second half of the film has them naked for a majority of the movie.  At points they are worshipping each other’s bodies (her kissing his penis was sited in court cases as part of the pornography), and at other points, the sex is somewhat violent and uncomfortable.  A balance between the first half of the movie and second half of the movie needed to be met, and it just isn’t.

i am curious yellow erotica swedish lena nyman borje ahlstedt

Want some more?

The movie itself does have some creative shooting, and I do like the ’60s Sweden setting.  It however tries to be too edgy at points with jump cuts and often through the inclusion of Vilgot Sjöman as a character in the story, it breaks the fourth wall by acknowledging the director in a weird way (lending itself to the New Wave style).  It is definitely art house, but it doesn’t feel like good art house.

I Am Curious (Yellow) is rather dull erotic film and plods along.  I honestly didn’t expect much plot nor did I get much plot.  I would have liked the movie better if it had been whittled down to an hour and a half and better balanced between the two storylines since they don’t really mesh well.  I almost feel obligated to check out I Am Curious (Blue) to see if it is more redeeming, but after two hours of I Am Curious (Yellow), I need a break.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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