42nd Street Cinema

Entrails of a Virgin (1986)

Kazuo 'Gaira' Komizu's splattery pinku eiga, Entrails of a Virgin/Shojo no harawata.

Starring: Saeko Kizuki, Naomi Hagio, Megumi Kawashima, Osamu Tsuruoka, Daiki Katô, Hideki Takahashi and Kazuhiko Goda.

On the surface, Entrails of a Virgin is something of a bizarre mix between a straight forward splatter picture and a Japanese "pink film". But, if you scratch a little deeper and have a sick sense of humor, it could also be interpreted as a comedy.

The wafer thin plot is essentially about a group of photographers and glamour/softcore models, who go on a shoot in a forest, spend the night in an abandoned house, get stalked, killed and in some instances; penetrated by a mud-covered demon's unnaturally large penis.
The film is also padded out by boorishly shot and 'fogged' softcore scenes, as well as, lengthly 'dream-like' flashback sequences, generally involving one of the models having sex with the lead photographer. While these sequences aren't crudely shot, it's neither erotic or stimulating.

Returning to the film's horror elements, it features an onslaught of over the top slayings, including one unfortunate fellow's eyeball being popped out, after being bludgeoned over the head and a woman's guts being ripped out through her vagina. Sadly, these are few and far between.
I find the director, Komizu's analogy of this film interesting. He compares the film to that of a candy company's motto: 'One candy, twice the fun'. In as much as, you pay to see a horror film and get gratuitous sex too. I suppose one could extrapolate upon that and go as far as saying, that it's ultimately the combination of sex and violence.

Entrails of a Virgin is a great 3 star movie. It possesses an uneasy and ominous atmosphere, inhabited by host of unpleasant characters, engaging in sordid activities and while that might sound like good sleazy fun ,at times I was just left feeling cold.
Komizu's stylish method of direction and beautiful framing of each shot are definitely one of the film's strong points, as well as the use of lighting through fog on external shots, which looks sublime and really adds to the isolated atmosphere.
However, despite the film's short running time, the unattractive cast and infrequent violence, the end piece is quite difficult to sit throughout without trying to hit fast forward.


CiNEZiLLA said...

Good one! Always felt that these ones didn't live up to their reputation!

R. Sterling Gray said...

I generally avoid anything Japanese(movie wise) newer than the late 1990s. 60s, 70s, and 80s, I really enjoy though. Add something about this time period in particular really appeals to me. I might search for this one.

price per head software said...

If I watch this the number of Japanese horror movies I've seen will double. While it sounds like this won't hold a candle to the violence of "Audition", I might have to watch.

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