House of the Sleeping Beauties
Director Vadim Glowna explores such complicated issues as loneliness, guilt, remembrance, mourning, sex, death, and dying in this adaptation of Yasunari Kawabata's novel concerning a most unusual bordello catering to a most unlikely clientele. Edmond is a lonely man in his late sixties. On the advice of his older friend Kogi, Edmond visits a bordello that allows elderly men the rare opportunity to lie down beside beautiful, youthful women. The girls are narcotized before each session, ensuring that they never awaken to actually meet the clients. Presiding over this mysterious establishment is the 60-year-old Madame, a woman who assumes the caring role of mother to both the girls and the men who come to be with them. Each time Edmond lies down next to one of the girls, memories of his previous life come flooding back. Edmond wants nothing more than to disappear silently into death while basking in the glorious perfection of youth. One night, by chance, Edmond observes Madame and her helpers disposing of a corpse. But while Edmond becomes morally conflicted about what he has seen, he cannot stop himself from returning to the bordello. When Edmond begins questioning Madame about the incident, the mystery only seems to deepen.