Bumpkin Soup / Excitement of the Do-Re-Mi-Fa Girl / Blood of the Do-Re-Me-Fa Girl Roars / Do-re-mi-fa musume no chi wa sawagu (1985)

The country girl Akiko appears at a university campus in search of Yoshioka, the boy she has determined to marry (apparently because he took her virginity) and wanders into not a world of study but of continuously weird behavior. As she says, it's more like a constant festival or circus than a school. Yoshioka hasn't … Continue reading Bumpkin Soup / Excitement of the Do-Re-Mi-Fa Girl / Blood of the Do-Re-Me-Fa Girl Roars / Do-re-mi-fa musume no chi wa sawagu (1985)

Crazy Family / Gyakufunsha kazoku (1984)

In Family Game, Yoshimitsu Morita took a scalpel to the modern Japanese middle-class family; in Crazy Family, Sogo Ishii takes a sledgehammer to the same subject, but expands his target to the whole of contemporary Japanese society. We meet the Kobayashi family on that magical day known to so many American families in the fifties … Continue reading Crazy Family / Gyakufunsha kazoku (1984)

MacArthur’s Children / Setouchi shonen yakyu dan (1984)

Most of the movies made about the Occupation after the Occupation officially ended in 1952 have looked back through the eyes of the yakuza. MacArthur’s Children, however, views the early years of the Occupation through the experience of three fifth-graders on a tiny island in the Inland Sea. It is a view in which the … Continue reading MacArthur’s Children / Setouchi shonen yakyu dan (1984)

Imperial Japanese Empire / Great War / Dai Nippon teikoku (1982)

Having seen great success with 203 Kochi, Toshio Masuda and screenwriter Kazuo Kasahara tried to do the impossible in Dai Nippon teikoku – compress the entire Japanese experience of the war with the US into one three-hour feature. Though there are plenty of explosions and scenes of soldiers charging, with documentary footage interspersed, they actually … Continue reading Imperial Japanese Empire / Great War / Dai Nippon teikoku (1982)

Season of Terror / Gendai koshoku-den: Teroru no kisetsu (1969)

While little discussed by critics, Season of Terror is one of Wakamatsu’s most interesting movies. The date is 1969, and it is a movie immersed in the last gasp of left-wing political rebellion during 1969-70. Two men try to be inconspicuous as they follow another through a large apartment complex. They turn out to be … Continue reading Season of Terror / Gendai koshoku-den: Teroru no kisetsu (1969)

Secret Chronicle : Sex Beast Market / (Secret) Lust female market / Confidential Secret Market / (Maruhi) shikijô mesu ichiba (1974)

Japaneses studios, particularly Nikkatsu and Toei, had a taste for especially lurid titles that often misled the audience. We can only wonder what the reaction must have been when a typical roman porno audience dropped in on (Secret) Lust Female Market, which suggests something like a story of women abducted and sold as sex slaves. … Continue reading Secret Chronicle : Sex Beast Market / (Secret) Lust female market / Confidential Secret Market / (Maruhi) shikijô mesu ichiba (1974)