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Gushing Prayer

(Funshutsu kigan: 15-sai baishunfu)
Sponsored by: FAB Press
  • Japan 1971
  • 72 min
  • 35mm
  • Japanese with English subtitles

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Director: Masao Adachi
Screenplay: Izuru Deguchi (Masao Adachi)
Cast: Aki Sasaki, Hiroshi Saito, Yuji Aoki, Susumu Iwabuchi, Michio Akiyama
Producers: Saisuke Asakura
Distributor: Stance Company

Part of...

Behind the Pink Curtain   

Behind the Pink Curtain


The hypnotic GUSHING PRAYER begins with an extended group sex scene in which the story's high school-age protagonist, Yasuko, is very much the centrepiece. As she lies beneath the thrusts of an enthusiastic adolescent classmate, her friends call on her anxiously from the sidelines, "Can you feel it? What does it feel like?" Yasuko, however, confesses to feeling nothing, appearing frozen to all feeling. And so, upon the goading encouragement of her peers, she embarks on an odyssey of self-discovery to find the reasons for her desensitization to the world around her.

Born in 1939 in Kita Kyushu, Masao Adachi emerged from the Nihon University Film Study Club alongside filmmakers like Motoharu Jonouchi and Isao Okishima, to become one of the leading figures in the underground experimental scene of the ’60s with films like RICE BOWL (WAN, 1961), SEALED VAGINA (SAIN, 1963) and GALAXY (GINGAKEI, 1967). However, it is for his later associations with Nagisa Oshima, in whose DEATH BY HANGING (KOSHIKEI, 1968) he appears in the role of the security officer, and more famously with Koji Wakamatsu, scripting literally dozens of his most famous titles, including EMBRYO HUNTS IN SECRET (TAIJI GA MITSURYOSURU TOKI, 1966), GO GO SECOND TIME VIRGIN (YUKE YUKE NIDOME NO SHOJO, 1969), SEX JACK (SEKKUSU JAKKU, 1970), and ECSTASY OF ANGELS (TENSHI NO KOKOTSU, 1972), that he is best known.

Through Wakamatsu Productions, Adachi also directed some of the pink genre's most energetic and revolutionary titles, including ABORTION (DATAI, 1966), SEX PLAY (SEIYUGI, 1968) and HIGH SCHOOL GUERRILLA (JOGAKUSEI GERIRA, 1969). He also became known as one of the country's most progressive film theorists and critics, as well as directing the experimental documentary AKA SERIAL KILLER (RYAKUSHO: RENZOKU SHASATSUMA, 1969) and the pro-Palestinian propaganda film RED ARMY–PFLP: DECLARATION OF WORLD WAR (SEKIGUN-PFLP: SEKAI SENSO SENGEN, 1971), before disappearing from Japan, apparently disillusioned with the direction along which the country's commercial cinema was heading, leaving for Beirut where in 1974 he joined the Japanese Red Army in lending its assistance to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and their quest to fight for the liberation of the Israeli-occupied territories. He was not to return until 2000, after such associations saw him extradited from Lebanon to face a brief jail sentence back in his home country, later making PRISONER/TERRORIST (YUHEISHA/TERORISUTO, 2007) based on his own experiences.

—Jasper Sharp, MIDNIGHT EYE

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