Nov 15

Story of a Sex Crime: Rape Without Reason (1969) aka Gendai sei hanzai zekkyô hen: riyû naki bôkô


Three young men from the countryside spend their lives in Tokyo alternately complaining about their boring existence and brutalizing people. When they come to violent ends themselves, they claim to be victims of society.
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Nov 09

Naked Bullet (1969) aka Otoko goroshi onna goroshi: hadaka no zyudan

A yakuza flees from his boss with a young waitress and is tricked into returning to the fold. For his efforts, he is tortured and beaten, and she is raped and discarded like trash. Five years later, a similar scenario presents itself only this time, the ex- yakuza has learnt from his mistake. The director employs a subtle, documentary style and switches between color and black and white. The women in this film are gorgeous, and there is a plethora of nudity. Structured much more conventionally than many Wakamatsu pictures, and feeling more like noir than pink. It’s a humble little gem from a truly maverick director.
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Oct 30

The Hundred Monsters (1968) aka Yôkai hyaku monogatari

This is the first of three “Yokai” films made in the 1960s by Daiei, which also gave the world Gamera and Giant Majin. Like the later, this film has a period setting that suggests a samurai film and emphasizes a human drama in which, ultimately, only the intervention of a supernatural monster (in this case, “yokai,” or spirits) can resolve the conflict satisfactorily. Continue reading

Oct 28

The Bride from Hades (1968) aka Botan-dôrô

talespeonylanternKaidan Botan Doro (Tales of the Peony Lantern) is based on the kabuki version of one of the most famous ghost stories in Japan. Shinzaburo flees an unwanted marriage with his brother’s widow and lives quietly as a teacher removed from his family. On the night of the summer Obon festival, he meets a beautiful courtesan named Otsuyu and her attendant. When He begins to suspect the women are ghosts and are draining his life away Shinzaburo becomes frightened and seeks help from the temple priest.
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