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Ai No Corrida

After all day hard working, tonight I see a movie.

It’s a very unique movie named Ai No Corrida (In the Realm of the Senses). It is based on a true story in 1936 Tokyo. It is about a couple of lovers who are addicted in making love. The man is a boss of a geisha house. The woman is a formal geisha. She has given up the job but is enticed by the man. They’d like to make love every day in every hour. The sextual behavior the movie showed us is so direct, horriable and abnormal that I become to understand the basis of the Japanese sextual culture. Yes it must because of the long history of Shinto. It is a religion of phallism. Although that is not all, the religion is inside its core. Hence we can understand why nowadays there are so many abnormal sexy games and movies (like SM) in Japan.

Back to the movie itself, the deviant woman, is totally crazy of sex. I do not want to talk about the behavior itself, but frankly speaking, the movie itself is absolutely a pornographic art. It is an art because the movie, every frame is beautiful, full of the Japanese gorgeous colors and decadent smellings. The dispirited and hopeless mood can be seen everywhere in the movie. However, the content is obscene. This movie was banned even in USA when it came into being and planned to attend the festival. The Los Angels Times called it “Spectacularly erotic”, and the News Day called it “★★★1/2”. Why? Because the crazy and extreme spirit can fright everybody. Death and sex, like sakura in spring, suicide via paunching, is full in the Japanese culture. The Japanese women are supposed to please men. To our suprise, they are proud of that!

Here is the introduction of the movie. (Source from UNC – Univercity Libraries)

Title: Ai no corrida

Ai no corrida
Ai no corrida

Alternate Titles
– Bullfight of Love
– Empire of the Senses
– In the Realm of the Senses
– The Realm of the Senses

Run Time: 104 minutes
Release Date: 1976
Director: Nagisa Oshima

Genre:  Drama
Japan & Japanese Cinema
Sex & Gender Studies

Origin: France, Japan

Description: In 1936 Tokyo, a beautiful young woman falls desperately in love with a married man — the husband of the owner of a geisha house– after watching them make love. She and the husband become drawn to one another, forming a strong, almost wholly, sexual relationship. The woman becomes completely obsessive. She wants the man only for herself and urges him not to have sex with any other woman, especially his wife. Their sexual trysts becomes the talk of the world they live in, and they begin to live for the erotic contact they have with one another. Sex bonds them unmercifully. This film was banned from its American premiere at the New York Film Festival in 1976. Its openly graphic and psychological intensity created a storm of controversy at the Festival. The film works on some levels as erotic art — Oshima’s eye for detail, his over-all handling of the sexual scenes (which are almost constant) is skillful. But the film does mean to test our prurience — at what level we will, or can tolerate sexual tyranny and manipulation. The obsession of the woman is so overwhelming and so disturbing that one can question the filmmaker’s intent — how universal does Oshima see her maniacal urges? This is a work of art, but one has to call it pornographic art. It is arguably the most intensely real, and honest work of pornography on film.

With: Tatsuya Fuji and Elko Matsuda both of whom give fascinating performances. Also with Aio Nakajima, Taiji Tonoyama and Akiko Koyama.

Notes: Screenplay by Oshima. Photographed by Hideo Ito. Music by Minoru Miki. The film’s story is taken from the pages of Tokyo news stories in of 1936, where most of the events of the film actually occurred. The woman achieved an almost mythical status among the public of the time — her obsessive love struck some deep, hidden cord in the Japanese.

A reminder: the film is completely realistic and graphic in its sexual scenes. The film should not be viewed by those offended by its strong sexual nature.

If the movie is not the thinking of the director himself, it must be the fighting back from the oppressed Japanese women. The final drop scene shows that. If it is wrong again, maybe the contained marching army and the strangling the man by that woman in the final part of the movie means the thinking: Making Love and No War!

Anyway, it is an obscene movie (as somebody might call it) I strongly recommend to those whose heart is strong and who is a film-lover, but I strongly reject it to ordinary people. It is particularly not suitable to those upright and pure-hearted young girls. I AM SERIOUS.

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