Play It Cool

Play It Cool ★★★½

Not as strong as other Masumura pictures, but this has its pleasures. It's kind of amazing how consistent Masumura is in tone and scope, telling these stories of women who end up in exploitative circumstances but manage to regain some measure of agency within their oppressive contexts. If she's going to be exploited, she's going to be exploited on her own terms.

Of course, she ends up being despised for it. Because no one's supposed to rock the boat. No one's supposed to be changing the rules we're all suffering under. We're all just supposed to accept our oppression, and participate in a system that keeps everybody down.

Also, I really love it when a 70s or 80s Japanese movie has a scene set in a dance club. It's a real hoot to see what counted for dancing in those days.