Genre: Action/ Drama/ Exploitation/ Pinku Eiga
Director: Shunya Ito
TRASH CINEMA RECOMMENDED MOVIE
Unlike the first two Female Scorpion flicks, Female Prisoner Scorpion Beast Stable isn’t a prison picture. Having escaped in the last installment, Nami Matsushima (Meiko Kaji) is on the lam, with Detective Kondo in hot pursuit.
Nami gets a job in a garment sweatshop and rooms with a prostitute, Yuki (Yayoi Watanabe). Yuki became a prostitute in order to take care of her brother, who became mentally disabled after an industrial accident. She’s such a good sister that she even takes care of his sexual needs.
When Yuki defends Nami against a Yakuza scumbag who wants her body in exchange for not turning her over to the cops, Nami drifts into the radar of Katsu (Reisen Lee), an enemy of Nami’s from her prison days.
If you’ve seen the previous two installments, you can see that Female Prisoner Scorpion Beast Stable tells a much smaller story. No large scale prison riots here. But that’s okay.
For my money, Female Prisoner Scorpion Beast Stable has the best opening scene of the series so far: Nami is on a subway, when she’s spotted by Detective Kondo. After a chase, Kondo snaps the cuffs on her, but she still manages to escape. I’m not telling how, but I laughed in delight at Nami’s solution to her predicament.
There’s also a number of lovely poetic images. My favorite is a cascade of lit matches falling through an open sewer grate.
The acting is of the usual high Japanese standard from the period.
There are a couple of things that hold Female Prisoner Scorpion Beast Stable back from Highly Recommended status. One is a number of gaps of logic in the screenplay by Hirô Matsuda (based on a comic by Tooru Shinohara). The other is the pace, which is hypnotic and slow.
I enjoyed Female Prisoner Scorpion Beast Stable, but it won’t be everyone’s cup of sake.
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