roman poruno revival (Eurospace, Nikkatsu)

anne mcknight annekmcknight at
Mon Mar 8 11:34:43 EST 2010


I wonder if anyone in or around Tokyo might have been at the recent  
screenings at Eurospace (mid-February), where Nikkatsu's new "line" of  
roman poruno films was debuted in mid-February.

The various articles & websites I have seen are going out of their way  
to suggest that the first film, Ato kara, mae kara, is not a remake of  
the first roman poruno film, but rather a "return." Despite this  
brashness, the PR does frame the film as a neo-nostalgia picture by  
name-checking that first film, Danchi tzuma--hiru sagari no jiō (1971,  
dir. Nishimura Shogorō). (Website here: 

I was kind of curious about the reception of this film, if anyone  
happened to catch the various talk shows. The venue is "classier" than  
typical pink territory, and often features foreign films frequented  
mainly my women. But (if I recall correctly...) new pink films of the  
more auteurist variety have also played at Eurospace. The director,  
Masamoto Shūichirō, seems of a more thoroughly corporate stripe than  
the pink directors, with roots in Yoshimoto Kōgyō. Also, the sports  
papers seem to think the new line is going for a split male-female  
audience (danjō o towazu), a marketing mix it seems to find necessary  
to capture the "eros of the 21st century."

I was curious what the whole vibe of the screenings was like, and if  
the bourgeois love-hate nostalgia object of the  "danchi" setting has  
any resemblance to the split purveyed by a show like Mad Men for a  
viewer in the US-- a combination of historical hindsight that promotes  
a moral high ground of "how far we are from those retrograde  
moralities" (water-cooler inequities, racism, Kennedy assassination  
all happening in the background, while the corporate-suburbia commuter  
cadre is oblivious) while also supporting a retro love of period  
costumes and furniture fetishes.

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