So I got another 25 pounds of porno today. No sooner had I recorded the very last tape and taken a day to breathe a well-earned sigh of relief when the next massive box-o-smut arrives at my door. It's occured to me that I've yet to write about most of those lovely pinku eiga; "Pink Movies" that were basically big bidget soft-porno films that Japan released in to theatres starting in the late 60's up until the latter half of the 1980's, when the cost of shooting porn on video killed any sort of market for "artistic", "classy", or... y'know. "Good" porn.
This period created plenty of bad films, sure. There's always good porn and bad porn. Mercifully the good often outweighs the bad in the world of pinku, and even a bad pinku is usually a lot more entertaining than the lame, soulless gonzo smut that we buy in to these days. This goes for Japan and America: while I prefer Japan's generally more adorable and less penis-focused shot on video crap, it's still shot on video crap, and no fetish or bevy of cute AV girls can ever change that fact.
So, in honor of Japanese porno having once again taken any of my free time, I've decided to write about a few personal favorites while I record the second of 35 smut-tastic videos awaiting my magical DVD-R touch:
TOKUGAWA III: THE ORGIES OF EDO - The last in a trilogy of unrelated films by one of pinku's finest names, ISHII Teruo, TOKUGAWA III is a collection of tales as told by a gynocolegist who performed abortions and birthings for the very poor and the very rich during the Edo period in the mid 19th century. The film starts off with a sleazy samurai who claims to take an innocent girl away from her misey forever, and in reality sells her in to prostitution. The second story is about a girl who, after being raped by a condemned freak who was badly burned, can only get off with freaks. This leads to her riding hairy dwarved like horses and requesting a negro to please her, until her husbands' inability to satisfy her drives him mad and he begins to mutliate the both of them. Finally - and this one is super special - is the story of the shogun who, after sacrificing several women for his amusement, picks a beautiful survivor to be his next concubine - much to the dismay of his current favored wife. Turns out this mystery girl is actually his long lost sister, and while the lead wife torments this interloper. This leads to women painted with poisonous gold paint, incest bondage, and a finale in which a dead concubine has her child cut from her belly with a katana blade.
Insane is the name of the game here, and we'd expect no less from the guy who directed JOY OF TORTURE and INFERNO OF TORTURE, both of which were part of the same Tokugawa trilogy (and released both only in Japanese on remastered DVD, and subtitled in English with slightly inferior prints by Japan Shock). The third film - Orgies of Edo - is often confused with another film Ishii directed, who's title is similar. Because of this confusion Japan Shock has decided to not release the film, leaving us with a rather crummy German-dubbed DVD which cuts the most violent and erotic sequences and has a new opening. It's a shame, really: this film is definately one of the highlights of Ishii's career, easily eclipsing his non-porno films like THE BLIND WOMAN'S CURSE - a likable, but all too plain affair from the man who's given us black-light tattoos and cross dressing comedians playing imprisoned women who want to be geisha. Tokugawa III, while less of a porno or a gore film that the two before it (though there's plenty of both), is a great character driven drama for a pinku movie, and packs style and beauty in every scene, particularly the sequence where the bastardly samurai is chasing his lover down through halls of silk, a scene which would later be remade in the even wilder Hong Kong classic SEX AND ZEN. Tokugawa III is worth it's weight in class - if not porn - and that's really what I'm in to after the 15 minutes or so it takes to crank one out.
OIRAN: PROSTITUTE - I'll be honest. This film sucks. It doesn't suck balls... it's not a totally unwatchable piece of dreck. But it's got some problems. Some BIG problems. Almost all of which are nullified by the final act.
It starts off with a rather refined whore doing her thing in the brothels of Edo. Lots of interpersonal mayhem, jealousy, and reportedly hard core sex acts happen. Unforutnately, none of it's very well acted or filmed. It's sort of like a really bad soap opera. With hardcore porn. It sounds like a good idea... but, it's not, rest assured. The girls can't act worth a shit, the tattoing they show off so proudly on the old lobby cards is pretty weak, and worse yet Englishmen start showing up... and, as with 95% of white guys in Japanese (or Chinese) movies, they're acting in Japan because they weren't good enough to act in Hollywood. Or on the BBC. Yeah, it's pretty sad stuff.
So why does this film rock? The lead prostitute escapes in a basket carried off by a big fat white guy who humps her and speaks in broken English. When she escapes in to the outside world, she falls in love with a young nobleman, who speaks better English. But she's haunted by the face of her lover which appears on the nasty, scabby wound that's appeared on her knee. She finally gets married, and her dead lover's soul returns...
...to bite her white husband's dick and not let go.
This leads to a fucking awesome scene of said male porno star biting a glowing dildo, and a goofy looking Southern priest who procesed to whip that pussy face with his rosary 'till it lets go of it's death cock-biting grip. It then pukes up semen all over the priest and husband, thus making this the funniest porno remake of THE EXORCIST. (I can only assume there is more than 1. I could be wrong.) Finally, she talks to her vag, giving a heart warming monologue that he's gone now, and that he needs to accept that she's in love again, and her white penis makes her happy.
Did I mention she doesnt speak a word of English, and as such every single line she says is a phonetic trainwreck?
Boring locations. Bad acting. Despite the film being a wall-to-wall porn addict's overload and the amazing final act with the growling biting vagina... it's pretty awful. I still like it though, and I'll be damned of that lame hour and a half before the good shit can kill my enthusiasm for the final reel.
MADAME DE SADE - A woman is stood up on her wedding day, with only a priest, a friend and a co-worker as witnesses to the tragedy. Running home, said bride to be actually just has her future husband chained to the bed, and shows him who's the boss - with a whip and a blindfold - before letting him go.
What she doesn't know is that her friend has started a romantic relationship with her captive, a man who had a lover he's tried desperately to keep from knowing the truth about himself and his owner. After abusing her man sufficently, she decides she's going to teach the cutte little girl who thought she could steal her properly just who's at the top of her kinky totem pole.
As a piece of erotica, this film literally does every single thing it can think of: burned balls, suffocated in female genitals, dragged on leashes, men butt-rammed with dildoes, masturbating with dessert, fucked at knife point, forced deep throating... if there isn't something in here that gets your rocks off, damn it man, discover some fetishes! But it's porno qualities aside, the direction gets a major thumbs up for the final reel; it's pretty common for porno, even elegant pinku films, to get lost after 2 partners. The grand finale` has not 3, but 4 participants, and not only is everyone doing something interesting at all times, but the camera never just drones on one thing and then cuts to another at random. It's a lot harder to make an orgy interesing than people might think. I know. I've watched a LOT of Japanese porn. This film succedes on the level of fantasy driven taboo-filled eroticism... and not much else. Still, if it managed to be a great erotic film, hell, mission accomplished.
STAR OF DAVID: Beautiful Girl Hunting - Ah, the classic SUZUKI Norifumi film that more or less sums up his career: Judea-Christian themes crossed with brutal violence, frightening sex, and a big budget. A more or less accurate adaptation of the manga of the same title (Dabide no Hoshii), Star of David stars a boy named Tatsuya, the product of his raped mother and a wandering thug who terrorizes and often kills any lovely woman he crosses paths with. His mother killed herself after years of she and her son being abused by her jealous and irrational husband, and at the age of 16 Tatsuya kills his father, thus inheriting the family fortune... he continues his life, courting the girl next door, until his 17th birthday, when he kidnaps the prostitute his "father" made his mother so miserable with, kills her, and then rapes her corpse.
Tatsuya decides - after wanking on WWII propoganda with sticky results - that much like the Nazi's at Auchewitz, he will decide who lives and who dies; in his eye he sees the Star of David on the flesh of those who are unworthy of their life. Innocent schoolgirls, famous idol singers, he kidnaps them and enslaves them without pity or worry. Things get even more interesting when, traveling through Japan, Tatsuya's biological father finds his son and decides he wants to join in on the fun...
Despite the vague ending and the addition of the girl he's genuinely romantically fascinated by, Star of David is a very accurate adaptation of the first 2 books of the infamous manga by SATOU Masaaki ,, and beats the living snot out of the low budgeted and badly produced anime series based on the same material. While it never reaches the supremely retarded heights of watching Tatsuya run his own island filled with his hand selected harem (whom he randomly kicks down a slide that feeds in to the ocean!), the film is really pretty horrifying as a psychological sudy of a man who's life leads him to believe that humans are unworthy of compassion. Tatsuya isn't really a villain in any traditional sense, he's a man who's rebelling against the goodness and morality of the world for the family that turned his back on him, and as such no matter how horribly he treats the girls he kidnaps, you can't help but feel he deserves some justice. And the scene where he screws the dead whore in his basement torture chamber - soullessly pumping in to her while drenched in her blood - s one of the most fascinating and creepy moments you'll see in crazy 70's porn.
A lot of people credit Pasolini's SALO`, or the 120 Days of Sodom as a sick and demented masterpiece of erotic horror film making. These people are retarded: it's a very faithful and classy adaptation of a novel by the Marquis de Sade, but a few strong moments and ideals aside - which are almost rendered null by the needless and shoehorned 20th century social commentary - it's neither erotic, nor horrifying. Star of David is both, and while as a morality play it's perhaps imperfect; after all, who is good in this mess?, it's a stylish and sleazy pinku violence eiga that's pretty hard to top. Truth be told, however, Suzuki topped it in his own SEIJUU GAKUEN: School of the Holy Beast, some 5 years earlier. It's also based on a Satou manga if memory serves, and I can only pray that there were a few more Suzuki/Satou films that history has simply forgotten.
And that's all I got for now. Give me a while and I'll give some words on the new MONDO CANE box set that just arrived. Man, this thing is sex in DVD form.