aka FEMALE PRISONER SCORPION: JAILHOUSE 41
JOSHU SASORI: DAI-41 ZAKKYO-BO
Japan, 1972, Shunya Ito
Japan's five-film "Stray Cat Rock" series (see 11/30 at 6:45) was followed by the four-film "Female Convict Scorpion" series (1972-73) of women-in-prison movies, all starring the ruthless Meiko Kaji. Jailhouse 41 is probably the best of the bunch, and was hailed by Video Watchdog in 2004 as "the breakout rediscovery of the new millennium." It's a brutal, relentless action thriller in which the vengeful Kaji leads an all-female jailbreak. Overflowing with sex and violence, the color movie is further enhanced by director Shunya Ito's baroque, lyrical, even surreal visual flourishes. "Needs to be seen to be believed. It's both an art film and an exploitation film. Most of all, it's a feminist document that makes Thelma and Louise look like sewing-circle matrons." -San Francisco Chronicle. No one under 17 admitted! Cleveland revival premiere. Subtitles. DCP. 94 min.