Sunday, August 05, 2007

Queen of Japanese Movie

I came across this photo book in a Japanese bookstore here in NYC and immediately plunked down $40 to get it. Though it appears to only be distributed through Japanese retailers and for a Japanese audience, it happily has some of the text in both Japanese and English. It also has a CD with some of the instrumentals of the films that it covers.

At the onset of the 1970's Japanese film began going through an interesting and exploratory discovery of strong sexual themes and graphic imagery - what is termed the "pinku" films. Some of the exploitation aspects of these films also seeped over into the more traditional film genres such as the samurai and yakuza films. Into this quickly changing environment a new genre of sorts sprung up - the youthful female gang film that wove together a lethal concoction of hip violence, pop music, sexual situations, in your face attitudes, mod fashions and some of the lovelier Japanese actresses in the business. The success of this genre only lasted a few years but in that time they produced some memorable films and images.

This book covers some of the more famous ones with a series of posters and lobby cards on each. And for many of the films they provide the cast and crew in English as well as a short summary of the film (not always easy to understand admittedly). The book is 156 pages in length and crammed with photos. And if you know me at all, you know I have to share some of them with you! A number of the photos in the book have female nudity as this was a big selling point of the films - and I debated whether to include any of these and finally thought it best not to. But here are a bunch of the less sexual ones.

The films covered are:

The Stray Cat Rock series produced by Nikkatsu

Girls Junior High School series produced by Nikkatsu

Bad Girl Mako produced by Nikkatsu

The Girl Boss series produced by Toei

The Terrifying Girl's High School series produced by Toei

Sex and Fury produced by Toei

Female Yakuza Tale produced by Toei

Criminal Women Killing Melody produced by Toei

Zero Woman Red Handcuffs produced by Toei

Some of these films are available through U.S. distribution though I have heard rumors that one of the main distributors of these in the States is going out of buisness.

The ISBN number is 4-401-75110-8


Gandalf Mantooth said...

Great find! Thanks for sharing the scans.

Marc said...

Meiko Kaji is so amazing!

Chris said...

Awesome stuff. You know, this is the first time I've seen some of these posters. Thanks!

logboy said...

this, and all the other hotwax books, can be had through - yes, their search engine may be clunky and the prices can seem oddly high at times, but no customs charges and postage included make this particular book cheaper than it can be picked up for elsewhere... £19 / $38