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Recently in cult classics Category

Tokaido Yotsuya Kaidan
[The Ghost of Yotsuya]

Genre: Traditional Kaidan

review in one breath

Unscrupulous ronin Tamiya Iemon lies and kills to obtain the woman and future he desires, all the while feigning to be an upright and noble samurai. But when he causes the painful and sorrowful death of his once beloved wife Oiwa, her ghost vows justice and vengeance. This is a retelling of Japan's most classic horror tale brought to you by one of SaruDama's favorite directors, Nobuo Nakagawa.



Ring
[Ringu]

Genre: Supernatural Horror par Excellence

review in one breath

Let me begin by stating: YOUCH! VERY CREEPY!!!

Okay. Ringu is based on Ringu (1991), the first of a trilogy of novels by author Suzuki Koji. The movie became wildly popular in Japan and spawned several sequels/prequels, two television mini-series, a Korean, and eventually US remake. Ringu was held from release in the US until the release of the US remake, The Ring, in 2003. (Go figure.)



Black Lizard
[Kuro Tokage]

Genre: Extravagant High Camp

review in one breath

Japan's number one detective must match wits, winks and breathless philosophy with the notorious Black Lizard, the sultry, diabolical drag queen intent on stealing the humongous Star of Egypt while adding to her collection of human stuffed dolls!



Ai no corrida

In the Realm of the Senses

Genre: Death Spiral of Obsessive Love

review in one breath

This movie by Oshima Nagisa contains scenes that go well beyond the allowances of the Japanese film industry censors and was thus produced in France. This could easily be (and has been) considered a form of pornography, but is seldom declared such due to perhaps the historical background of the story and Oshima's determination to have this produced as an artistic revolt against Japan's unwillingness to allow anything of this sort (at a time when Western film was producing pornography). That said, those watching this movie are in for some very graphic sex scenes which leave little or nothing to the imagination.



Graveyard of Honor
[Jingi no Hakaba]

Genre: Yakuza Moral Implosion Extraordinaire

review in one breath

This infamous Fukasaku film marks a turning point in Japan's cinematic portrayal of yakuza, from that of a dying bushido breed to self-destructive and societally dangerous criminals. In a powerful and violent tale based on a real-life gangster from Fukasaku's own hometown, audiences are led to both simultaneously sympathize with and revile the monstrous Rikio and the path to hell he chooses.



Jigoku
[Hell / Sinner's Hell]

Genre: Classic Gore-laden Morality Tale

review in one breath

When the good-natured Shiro gets mixed up with his rather sinister classmate Tamura, his life takes a drastic turn for the worse as he suddenly finds himself in the depths of human depravity. Inevitably he and those he caused to suffer find themselves within the horrors of the Eight Gates of Hell where they all will suffer eternally to atone for their sins. But once in Hell, Shiro learns a tragic secret which spawns within him the power of hope. This is a 1960 classic.



Sex and Fury
[Furyo anego den: Inoshika Ocho]

Genre: Sex, Sex, Sex and a Whole Lotta Fury

review in one breath

After witnessing the murder of her father at an early age, Ocho has dedicated her life to avenging her father's death. She was left with only three clues, the images of a wild boar, a deer and a butterfly. When she eventually unlocks the mystery behind the killers' identity, it leads her down dark halls of, well, SEX and FURY.



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