The Embryo Hunts in Secret (1966) Kôji Wakamatsu

 The Embryo Hunts in Secret (1966)  
aka Taiji ga mitsuryô suru toki
Genre: Pinku
Country: Japan | Director: Kôji Wakamatsu
Japanese | Subtitles: English (Optional, embedded in Mkv file)
Aspect ratio: Cinemascope 2.35:1 | Length: 73mn
Dvdrip H264 Mkv - 800x332 - 23fps - 1.04gb

Japan has made some of the most stunning & original cinema of all time, but some of the most misogynistic & sadistic as well - Koji Wakamatsu's film is an excellent mixture of both forms. This film can also be seen as a pretty good indicator as to the extremes Japanese Pink cinema would eventually progress to in the 70's, although this is still very strong stuff for its time.

The plot – what little there is of it – revolves around a female trapped in a sadomasochistic relationship with her psychotic boyfriend. The film opens with a man taking his girlfriend back to his small apartment, where he almost immediately begins viciously beating her for no reason at all. For the next hour and ten minutes we are subjected to watching this man degrade and abuse his helpless girlfriend - he relentlessly flogs her with a bull whip, makes her crawl around on all fours and beg for food like an animal, repeatedly holds her head under water, ties her up in various different positions of Shibari-style rope bondage (she's pretty much tied up for the entire duration of the film), and slices her up with a straight-razor, all the while laughing with sadistic glee. Intercut with these acts of humiliation are flashbacks to the mans childhood where we see his father inflicting the same treatment on his mother. There are also strangely perverse ''tender'' moments as when the boyfriend breaks down crying and lays his head in his bound spouses lap as she gently strokes his hair and sings him a lullabye. Eventually though, the abused female manages to cut through her ropes and stab her deranged boyfriend to death. Afterwards she sits on the bed staring at his mutilated body while humming the same lullabye.

While this all sounds like the usual Japsploitation, there is much more to this film than pure exploitation. The combination of a confined space and lots of extreme close-ups, leads to a foreboding feeling of claustrophobia. There are also a lot of different camera techniques used, such as freeze-frames, still montages, superimposition and gorgeous b&w photography, which make this a bit more interesting visually than the regular formulaic Nikkatsu rape n' torture flicks of the 70's. I like a bit of art with my sleaze! Recommended for fans of avant garde cinema and Pinku Eiga.
The Embryo Hunts in Secret (1966)

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