Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Assault! Jack the Ripper (Yasuharu Hasebe, 1976)

For some time now, I've been guilty of employing overly crude wordplay to describe the act of making love. You know what I'm talking about, I have a tendency to use unorthodox language when it comes to sexual intercourse. (Don't be so hard on yourself. You're just being saucy.) I know, but I'd like to be known for other things as well. (Like what?) Oh, I don't know. But something other than stiff jimmies slamming into soft, magnanimous pussies, that's for sure. (I hate to break it to you, but you have definitely picked the wrong day to change your prose.) Why's that? (You're kidding, right? You do realize that you're in the middle of reviewing Yasuharu Hasebe's Assault! Jack the Ripper.) Yeah, so what? (It's a whimsical romantic comedy from the equally whimsical nation of Japan about a shy pastry chef who falls for a chubby waitress with a booty that just won't quit.) Yikes! I don't know how to put this, but this film is the Citizen Kane of  stabbing vagina movies.) The Citizen Kane? (Okay, maybe it's The Magnificent Ambersons of stabbing vagina movies. Either way, you can't avoid the fact that this film features at least eight stabbed vaginas.) When you say, "stabbed vaginas," you're speaking metaphorically, right? (I'm afraid not.) So, you're not talking about wet lady holes being stabbed repeatedly with manly meat sticks? (Well, yes and no. Yes, the film does feature conventional coitus from time to time. But mostly, no. You see, the serial killer/mild-mannered pastry chef in this film can't engage in conventional coitus unless he's stabbed a vagina first.)

Eww, please don't tell me he penetrates bloodied labia wounds with his penis. (No, he doesn't do that. He has a chubby vision of loveliness lying off to the side with her shapely legs aloft in the air waiting for him to insert the full-force of his penile predicament into her squishy secretion factory.)

Don't you see what this film has done to me? I mean, "penile predicament" and "squishy secretion factory"? Just when I thought I was out, Assault! Jack the Ripper pulls me back in.

Just kidding, I have no problem whatsoever wallowing in the filth I wallow in on a regular basis. (Um, don't you mean, "semi-regular basis"?) No, I'm cool with the level of my wallowing basis. (Are you sure about that?) Yeah, my basis when it comes to wallowing in filth is definitely regular.

Wow, that was sort of cathartic. (Does this mean you're going to stop being a neurotic crybaby, and maybe start describing what the crotch-compromising oomph emanating from Tamaki Katsura's tantalizing hindquarters did to your not even close to being fragile psyche?) You betcha.

When I first saw Tamaki Katsura appear onscreen I thought she was merely an extra, or worse, she was going to be the lead's kooky best friend.  I know, Tamaki's face is on the poster. But I didn't really look at the poster before I watched the movie. Anyway, as we see Tamaki's skinny co-workers at the restaurant she works going about their business waiting tables, I thought for sure we were about to start following one of these less chubby women. However, when the camera began to follow Tamaki, I let out an inaudible shriek. After the inaudible shriek had subsided, I thought to myself: Tamaki can't be the star of this movie, she's too unique, she's too fabulous.

(Hold on, I can understand how being "too unique" might hamper her ability to land starring roles -- blandness always seems to trump uniqueness when it comes to casting lead roles, but since when has being "too fabulous" been considered a burden?) You would be surprised to learn how the act of being fabulous in frowned upon in Hollywood. Well, that's just it, this film wasn't made by the puritan pukes who run Hollywood. Uh-uh, baby. This is a Nikkatsu film.

Now, I won't profess to know how being a "Nikkatsu film" makes it superior to the dreck Hollywood produces. But given that I have just experienced Assault! Jack the Ripper, I feel that there's a little more awesome coursing through my veins than there was before I sat down to watch this stylish ode to stabbing vaginas and kinky sex.

Remember Betsy Russell's black Brillo pad hairdo in Tomboy? You don't?!? May I ask what's wrong with you? Never mind that. The first thing that struck me about Tamaki Katsura was her Betsy Russell in Tomboy-esque hairdo. But after being struck by her hair, I was struck by other things.

Wearing her light blue waitress uniform (with white trim), Tamaki is the personification of surly. Rude to the customers, Tamaki clearly hates her job.

One day, Tamaki can be seen stomping leggily down the stairs in a more disagreeable huff than usual.

(And?) And what? I just wanted to make sure that I pointed out Tamaki's legs whilst in the process of stomping...leggily. And now that I've done that, we can move on.

(Call me crazy, but I think you might have a crush on Tamaki.) What? You're crazy. (Hey, who are you calling crazy?) You said "call me crazy." (Oh yeah.) Am I, though? Crazy, that is. (You're obviously in love with her.) Can you blame me? She's perfect. (Um, I think you might want to wait until at least the opening credits have finished before you start making wedding plans.) I don't see why I should do that, as I will love her no matter what kind of monkey shines she gets up to during this film.

(What if I told you that she's the type of gal who can only enjoy sex after her partner has plunged a knife into the vagina of another woman?) Well, I'll admit, that is a tad unorthodox, but I'm sure it's just a phase. (Yeah, it might be a phase for her, but what happens when her partner becomes so obsessed with stabbing the vaginas of others, that he can't think of anything else?)

That's a little far-fetched, don't you think? (Is it? Just ask Yutaka Hayashi, the meek pastry chef who works at Tamaki's restaurant, if that's "a little far-fetched." Oh, you know what? You can't ask him right now. You want to know why? He's out stabbing vaginas.) So, what you're saying is, she's insane? (You could say that. But in a weird way, it's Yataka who's the insane one. It just took Tamaki's mouth-watering curves and malevolent disposition to bring Yukata's insanity to the forefront.

In a scene that seemed like lifted straight out the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Tamaki and Yutaka are driving home from work on a rainy night, when all of a sudden, a mentally disturbed woman appears in the middle of the road. Giving her a ride, Tamaki... (Wait a second, why did they pick her up if she's, as you put it, "mentally disturbed"?) Oh, that's because they didn't realize she was mentally disturbed until she got in the car. Removing her top (though, the fact that she was wearing what looked like hospital clothes should have been a dead giveaway as to the exact temperature of her mental state), the woman starts smearing cake all over her chest.

Concerned but not alarmed by this odd display, Tamaki and Yutaka continue on their way. Grabbing a baking knife, the woman starts cutting herself while giggling maniacally. This is the breaking point for Tamaki and Yutaka, as they stop the car and throw the woman out. Long story short, they end up killing the woman (she wouldn't let go of the car as the drove away) and dumping her body in a nearby junkyard.

Soaking wet as a result of the torrential down pore, a naked Tamaki is toweling herself off in full view of Yukata. The sight of Tamaki's ample booty undulating while she dries herself causes the usually mild-mannered Yukata to jump to his feet and begin to devour every square inch of her plump frame.

Unfortunately, they can't seem to replicate the orgasmic passion they managed to induce on the night they killed that mentally disturbed woman. Figuring that murder is the only way to improve their sex life, Tamaki and Yutaka begin a murderous reign of terror. Stalking women, murdering them (Yutaka usually stabs them in the vagina), and then having mind-blowing sex nearby, Tamaki and Yutaka seem to have found the perfect formula for maintaining a healthy relationship. Or have they?

Shapely without even trying, Tamaki Katsura is a chubby goddess as the unnamed waitress who loves mini-dresses and strappy heels. And major kudos need to be thrown in the general direction of whoever decided to cast her as the lead. It should go without saying, but I want more Tamaki Katsura in my life.

Refreshingly pornographic in places, Assault! Jack the Ripper is a rip-roaring good time to be had at the movies. Ugh. How 'about this, it's the best serial killer flick to feature a man and a woman since The Honeymoon Killers. I don't know, "serial killer flick"? That seems to do the film an injustice. Here's another, more apt term to add to your vocabulary: "Pink Eiga," a Japanese erotic film that usually features sex and violence. Yeah, I like that. Pink Eiga. Even though I've seen only seen a handful of Pink Eiga films, this one is surely the most entertaining.

Is that a baking knife in your pocket or are you just glad to see me?


  1. Nikkatsu put out a ton of sleaze in the '70s.

    Most of these pinku eiga are too rapey for me. So I honestly haven't watched many. Check out this site, though: They have lots of info on everything.

    The the late 1960s-early 1980s is one of my favorite eras of Japanese film. Everything just had this amazing and creative vibe. The whole underground punk film thing got started in the early '80s, too. And that's an entire crazy world unto itself.

  2. Oh, and Katsura Tamaki (billed as Nakai Miki, which was probably her real name) was also in "Sukeban: taiman shoubu" (Girl Boss: Diamond Showdown, 1974) starring Ike Reiko, who was half naked in about a thousand of these Toei Films pinku/exploitation films. I haven't seen it. But its about a lusty girl-gang on the loose in 1970s Osaka out for revenge on a violent yakuza syndicate.

    1. I know that movie! That's the one about the girl gang whose members have tattoos that cover the entirety of their left boobie.

    2. Its a whole series of films. And based on the original film posters, there are mammary glands and gang-related tattoos a plenty.