Palm Pictures has put some pretty interesting foreign movies such as Akarui Mirai (Bright Future) with Asano Tadanobu, but Hanai Sachiko No Karei na Shogai is one of the most brash, funny, and downright sexiest films I've ever seen, hence the X-rating, so be warned.
Call girl Sachiko Hanai is shot in the forehead by a North Korean agent. She survives, but the lodged bullet penetrates the center of her brain (via some mind-blowing but crude animation) and turns her into an intellectual genius. We can tell because she starts scribbling physics equations on the wall with a piece of chalk, and she becomes fascinated with French philosophy, and the genius of humankind--"all that is man's passion released towards the Universe." However, one amusing side effect is the havoc it plays on her taste buds. And the bullet hole makes for a grisly parody of the red bindi Indian women have on their forehead, although in Sachiko's case, it signifies the major nerve point in the human body--see what the bullet did to her?
Sachiko runs into the bookish Professor Toshio Saeki, and so touched is he with her intelligence he doesn't think twice of having an affair with her. He is one of the funniest characters. I mean, someone who gets turned on by anyone saying "Noam Chomsky?" Sachiko then tutors his shy and antisocial son Mamoru. Did I say shy and antisocial? With Sachiko, not for long, and what better reward to get right answers than by her removing a piece of clothing. What was it Van Halen sang, "Got it bad, so bad, I'm hot for teacher"?
Mamoru is keen on military defense maneuvers and missiles. "We'll always have wars. It's a good occupation," he says. This leads to Sachiko learning how "the TDF missile system is manipulated by the Bush administration, neoconservatism and the military industry that supports it." And speaking of Dubya, he gets a great drubbing here for the war in Iraq. He appears via some crude animation but by someone wearing a mask of freeze frame pictures of him. Turns out that Sachiko accidentally took Dubya's cloned finger that the North Korean agent's after. However, the scene of the finger violating her on the rooftop is queasy, not because it involves a writhing Sachiko being aroused, but because it's horrible to have Dubya to that to anyone, especially a sweet cute intellectual call girl like Sachiko.
The mission accomplished" speech is horribly but funnily dubbed, with references to his superweapon that pinpoints America's enemies one by one. "My intention is to have "naturally friendly wars" he says. Naturally friendly wars....RIGGHHHHTTT!
As for the North Korean agent, he's not exactly a nice guy, shooting people and even violating the professor's wife--a kind of nasty scene right there. But he ends up having a conscience later on. Hey, if it happened to Darth Vader in Jedi....
The film is clearly a throwback to the late 60's/early 70's softcore underground flicks such as Doris Wishman's Double Agent 73 or Pete Walker's The Tale of Tiffany Jones, but since when did Chesty Morgan or Tiffany go full-frontal or have something white squirted on them?--and I don't mean mayonnaise! Check out the dayglo pink cover of the DVD, not to mention Sachiko's outfit. Typical go-go girl/exploitation. And Sachiko being exploited by whoever she meets is straight from Candy by Terry Southern, although she does tend to give of herself to begin with. Then you have apocalyptic elements of Dr. Strangelove and elements of Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 911.
Emi Kuroda as Sachiko is clearly the star and a likeable one too, with or without clothes. Her teacher outfit at the beginning is a knockout. And her rendition of the Star Spangled Banner is definitely more appealing than Borat's. Sheer, unabashed, sexy delight for liberals, aficionados of 70's softcore cinema, and anyone who loves contemporary Japanese cinema. Sachiko, please be my teacher!
"Those who tell others to face reality are usually not facing it themselves."--Mamoru to Sachiko.