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  • Virgin Breaker Yuki II: Western Licensed District

    Virgin Breaker Yuki II: Western Licensed District

    ★★★

    The writer of the screenplay, Yozo Tanaka, was one of eight individuals that wrote Branded to Kill under the collective pseudonym Hachiro Guryu ("Group of Eight") along with Seijun Suzuki, Takeo Kimura, Atsushi Yamatoya, Chusei Sone, Yutaka Okada, Seiichiro Yamaguchi and Yasuaki Hangai. So it's particularly intriguing to see the butterfly motif pop up in this tale of love and fate set at the beginning of the Showa era...

    Once again, Yozo Tanaka mixes the very low-brow with a lot…

  • Lusty Discipline in Uniform

    Lusty Discipline in Uniform

    ★★★

    Shiro Shimomoto gives an excellent performance as the suuuuuuper creepy university lecturer stalker guy in this film directed by Mamoru Watanabe and written by Kazuo Komizu. It's a slimy, slow-burn tale and people are either going to know it's not for them within the first five minutes or be straight-up hooked waiting to see how this thing is going to end.

    This was produced by Film Workers, a production company formed the same year as this film's release by Watanabe…

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  • Slave Widow

    Slave Widow

    ★★★½

    Very good for what it is -- a black-and-white pink film made on the cheap - due to a good cast and artful cinematography. The plot is decent as well, it's built around what has since become something of a genre trope, i.e. a woman in financial trouble, but it does it better than most. Ultimately it's a tragic story involving forbidden love, money, and class.

    A young Naomi Tani, some time before she would find fame at Nikkatsu, also…

  • The Homeless

    The Homeless

    ★★★½

    Shintaro Katsu gets beaten up and pisses himself and then proceeds to pay the bullies back with a comically large wooden mallet... He also searches for sunken treasure with Ken Takakura and Meiko Kaji... Among other things. It's a good time. 

    The story is quite simple and takes its time, it's more of an atmospheric piece compared to the more commercial works that actors like Ken Takakura were starring in at the time.

    I read that it is something of…