In the Realm of the Senses

( 9 )

Overview

Based upon a true incident in 1930s Japan, Nagisa Oshima's controversial film effectively skirts the borderline between pornography and art -- making Bernardo Bertolucci's Last Tango in Paris of four years earlier look like children's programming in comparison. The story concerns servant and former prostitute Sada Abe Eiko Matsuda who becomes sexually obsessed with her employer Kizicho Tatsuya Fuji, a businessman, after seeing him making love to his wife. After making love to Sada, Kizicho becomes obsessed with ...
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Blu-ray (Special Edition / Wide Screen)
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Overview

Based upon a true incident in 1930s Japan, Nagisa Oshima's controversial film effectively skirts the borderline between pornography and art -- making Bernardo Bertolucci's Last Tango in Paris of four years earlier look like children's programming in comparison. The story concerns servant and former prostitute Sada Abe Eiko Matsuda who becomes sexually obsessed with her employer Kizicho Tatsuya Fuji, a businessman, after seeing him making love to his wife. After making love to Sada, Kizicho becomes obsessed with her as well. As their love-making becomes more and more intense, they find themselves unable to separate themselves from each other, until every waking hour is spent in more and more dangerous sexual acts with Sada becoming more and more of the aggressor. Finally, for the ultimate in eroticism, Kizicho agrees to be strangled during sexual ecstasy for the ultimate in orgasmic fulfillment.
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Special Features

New, restored high-definition digital transfer of the complete, uncensored version, with uncompressed monoaural soundtrack; ; New Audio Commentary featuring film critic Tony Rayns; New Interview with actor Tatsuya Fuji; A 1976 Interview with Director Nagisa Oshima and Actors Fuji and Eiko Matsuda, and a 2003 program featuring interviews with consulting producer Hayao Shibata, Line Producer Koji Wakamatsu, Assistant Director Yoichi Sai, and Film Distributor and US Trailer; ; Deleted footage and US Trailer
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jonathan Crow
Shocking in its graphic sexual content and riveting in its portrayal of passion run amok, Nagisa Oshima's brilliant, notorious Ai no Korrida is a cinematic landmark. No film up to that time had seriously explored the potent gray area between art and pornography; in so doing, Oshima exposed and overturned many of the conventions of both. Like vintage Luis Buñuel, Oshima skewers expectations of "proper" art by shocking the audience; instead of Buñuel's slashed eyeballs and cross-dressing lepers, Ai presents the viewer with the actual act of sex. Oshima also exposes the voyeurism inherent in both pornography and cinema in general: virtually every sex scene (and there are many) is either witnessed by a third party or photographed through a window, so that the audience itself feels like a witness. Moreover, Oshima overturns heterosexual pornography's prevailing convention of women's serving men by having Ai's female protagonist dominate her willingly submissive lover. This story was based on a sensational true tale in which an ex-prostitute turned maid wandered the streets of Tokyo, clutching the dismembered organ of her lover after a particularly ecstatic round of lovemaking. She was quickly elevated into a folk heroine for Japan's nascent feminist movement, and least two other films based on her were made: Noboru Tanaka's masterful Jitsuroku Abe Sada (1975) and Nobuhiko Obayashi's post-modern Sada (1998). In Ai, Oshima focuses on how Sada and her lover and boss Kichi transgress all social conventions, from the hierarchical relationship between servant and master to even the distinction between male and female (Kichi at one point wears a woman's kimono and, by the film's end, Sada has a penis). Though Ai no Korrida can be viewed as part of the pinku eiga genre that was quite popular in Japan at the time, its graphic sexual content sparked a number of landmark censorship lawsuits. Sadly, it has never been seen in its native country in its unexpurgated form, though the film did garner much acclaim abroad and cemented Oshima's international reputation as one of Japan's master filmmakers. Though it has accured the musty-sounding title "film classic," Ai no Korrida has lost none of its subversive power to incite, offend, disturb, and arouse.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/28/2009
  • UPC: 715515045315
  • Original Release: 1976
  • Rating:

  • Source: Criterion
  • Presentation: Special Edition / Wide Screen
  • Language: Japanese
  • Time: 1:42:00
  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Sales rank: 415

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Eiko Matsuda Sada
Tatsuya Fuji Kichi-zo
Aoi Nakajima Toku
Yasuko Matsui Manageress of Inn
Meika Seri Geisha
Akiko Koyama Geisha
Naomi Shiraishi Geisha Yaeji
Taiji Tonoyama Old Beggar
Technical Credits
Nagisa Oshima Director, Screenwriter
Anatole Dauman Producer
Terumi Hosoishi Special Effects
Hideo Ito Cinematographer
Minoru Miki Score Composer
Yoichi Sai Asst. Director
Shigenori Shimoishizaka Set Decoration/Design
Jusho Toda Art Director, Costumes/Costume Designer
Keiichi Uraoka Editor
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 9 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(0)

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Makes Last Tango in Paris look like Bedtime for Bonzo

    This is the story of a former prostitute turned servant and her employer. She watches as he makes love to his wife and developes an obsession for him and he eventually for her. The relationship spins out of control and gets more dangerous in the sex they have. The nudity and sex are explicit and this film is rightfully rated NC17. The end must be seen to be believed. Definately not for the squeamish or the prudish.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    obsession

    what a beautiful and graphic film about the human mind dealing with
    obsession. all actors are wonderful. cinematically this is striking because of it age and setting.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 8, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 21, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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    Posted August 20, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 3, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 13, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews