The Other Side of Lost in Translation


Are Japanese perverts? #2

Now the new stereo type about Japanese is "Kinky."
Probably those "Hentai" videos(adult anime) have conributed to that,
something like a girl is raped by an incredible monster.
However, I also remember seeing lots of bootleg copies of
Japanese S&M porn films at New York porn shops in '80s.

During '60s and '70s, Japanese major film studios lost their audiences
to TV and Hollywood films so much that they were threaten to be bankrupt.
One of them called Nikkatsu decided to make a drastic change to survive
that they allowed their young directors to do anything
as long as they put several sex scenes in their low badget films.
At that time and still now, Japan has the strict law
not to show any genitals on any media.
therefore those Nikkatsu films were soft core porns,
or even less than today's standard of soft core.
However, young directors tried so hard to be creative
about how to provocative sexually and artistically.
Those films were called "Nikkatsu Roman Poruno(Romantic Porn)"
and one of their specialties was S&M.

At that time, I was a kid in a rural area of Japan,
but still I saw lots of posters of them with bare boobs of women
on my way to school every day
which could never happen in the U.S., I guess.
And those films were so controversial that TV asked
their actress to be on the talk shows very often.
However, until recently I had never seen them.

I bought a DVD box set called
"Masaru Konuma: Debauched Desires" a while ago,
and it contains four films of one of the most famous
Nikkatsu Roman Poruno directors, Masaru Konuma.
And one of the film "Wife to be sacrificed" caught my attention.
It is a very very disturbing film, very S&M,
lots of humiliations and even some suggesting elements of
child sex abuse without showing actual scenes.
Yet this is a beautifully photographed film
and made me think about this kind of human sexual behaviors.

In Japan, generally speaking, the awareness of
any kinds of social or political issues are very low,
including feminism.
Therefore nobody protests about the films contains lots of scenes
of abusing, tormenting, torturing and raping women
shown in the neighborhood theatres,
which is unthinkable in the U.S.
However, I do not think that means the rate of raping women
is much higher in Japan.
Probably the reality is the opposite
though I cannot say I am sure because rape victimes
tend not to report about incidents especially in Japan
to avoid further humiliations.

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