Part social-realist drama, part sadomasochistic trash opera, Gate of Flesh paints a dog-eat-dog portrait of postwar Tokyo. The film takes the point of view of a gang of tough prostitutes working out of a bombed-out building. When a lusty ex-soldier lurches into their midst, the group’s most sensitive member is tempted to break one of their strictest rules: no falling in love. From the women’s bold, color-coded dresses to the unorthodox use of superimposition effects and theatrical lighting, this is Suzuki at his most astonishingly inventive. Print courtesy of the Japan Foundation.
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