Gate of Flesh (The Criterion Collection)
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Top Customer Reviews
I love the raw, filthy extent of decadence that Seijun Sazuki has created for this film. Out of all the film's he's created, for some reason, he seems to be mildly ashamed of this one. He and production designer Takeo Kimura has created a cult classic of fabulous artistic visual achievement.
As you are aware, this film is about the life of prostitutes living within the war ravished ruins of the streets of Tokyo, just after the end of World War II. The main focus is on 5 Japanese girls. Prostitutes that work for themselves (no pimps), and share a burned out abandoned building, and live by certain set rules. They sell themselves on the streets and keep their money for themselves, however, if any of the girls give away sex for free, the other girls will tie her up and beat her senseless. All the girls are beautiful and yet their sweaty, filthy appearance actually contributes to what makes this film look so good.
What makes this film so beautiful to watch is how each of the girls wear a specific color of dress, which adds to the way the girls differ from each other, and although it was never initially intended, the Japanese audience actually created a personality perception based on colors, of the girls identified by the specific colors of how they were dressed.Read more ›
Recently, I decided to give Seijun Suzuki another shot and check out his prostitute exploitation movie, Gate of Flesh. Man, what a completely different experience this movie was. While Branded to Kill is a frustrating avant-garde attention span torture device of a movie, Gate of Flesh is about cute Japanese prostitutes who wear colorful dresses... and torture the sweet crap out of each other.
Set just after World War II in Japan, when American soldiers were ever-present and the stench of desolation and defeat burned the collective nostrils of a once proud nation, Gate of Flesh is joyfully grim heap of fun. Seijun Suzuki himself acknowledges that this movie was intended to be an exploitation picture, but that didn't stop him from loading Gate of Flesh with lovely colors, stylish sets, and quirky visual flourishes. Gate of Flesh combines two of my favorite things, visual flair and tittilation, into a handsome package.
The main characters of the film are a group of prostitutes that don't see much good in slaving for a pimp, so they take care of each other under one condition: don't provide sex for free. This, of course, rules out having any meaningful relationship with men.Read more ›
Suzuki opens with a shot of Maya (Yumiko Nogawa), a young homeless woman shocked by the sudden fall of the Japanese Empire, who aimlessly drifts with the constant flow of people. Her lost presence together with the raspy lyrics of a record symbolically presents the societal confusion of everything that has been lost to the devastating fire. The wandering eyes of Maya hunt for food, safety, and possibly belonging while dodging the dangers that lurk in the background. The law has no compassion for humanity, as it seeks the desperate survivors that have no other choice than to pursue illegal alternatives to survive.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
After WW II, a gang of prostitutes has their home base in the slums of Tokyo. They live in a world where the old generation of `big shots still talk big. Read morePublished on June 6, 2013 by Luc REYNAERT
Gate of Flesh (Seijun Suzuki, 1964)
Bad-boy director Seijun Suzuki, whose entire career seems to have involved pushing as many envelopes as possible, helped usher in the... Read more
Brutal and unabashedly lusty, Suzuki's "Gate of Flesh" is unlike other B-movie cult classics with its self-consciously flashy editing and nightmarish artistic design. Read morePublished on June 27, 2007 by John Farr
Seijun Suzuki pushed out until the last consequences this tour de force script based possibly on a true story. Read morePublished on November 20, 2005 by Hiram Gòmez Pardo Venezuela
Gate of Flesh is a film that Seijun Suzuki was told to make under his studio contract. In the hands of a normal filmmaker the film would be unforgettable at best, but under the... Read morePublished on October 14, 2005 by Donny
I really like good Japanese movies-I have 114 of them-but this isn't one of them.
Somehow-criterion decided to put this disaster out--a movie that ranks as bad as "In... Read more
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