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Having greatly enjoyed Wakamatsu's earlier film Go, Go Second Time Virgin, I was very excited to come across this one. The excitement was however short lived. Or should I say endless because that is about how long this movie seems. Rarely have I looked at the counter on my VCR more often to see how much more I would have to endure.
It was much the same feeling as when after seeing Godard's wonderfully early new wave movies, I was subjected to La Chinoise or Pierrot Le Fou. Actually Ecstacy of the Angels seem very much inspired by this more avant-garde side of Godard's film-making. But without the originality.
There is plenty of sex and violence here, and layers and layers of what is most likely satire on political idealism and the media's exploitation of sex and violence. And possibly even sex and violence in cinema itself. A film mocking film maybe. There is that term yet again: Sex and violence. Usually a safe recipe for good entertainment, be it in celluloid or newsprint form. But the problem here is that the message is lost in all the boring scenes and purposely stiff dialog. You will quickly lose track of who belongs to which revolutionary faction. You are probably supposed to. Is the movie supposed to show us how predictable and repetitious our lust for sex and violence is? Because it's all the same here. Every scene is just more of the same. Tedious repetition. Maybe that is the message. Is that why all the characters are named after seasons and weekdays? Possibly.
Whatever it is, it all seems rather outdated and unoriginal now. It's just plain boring. Maybe it wasn't in Japan in 1972.
You do sort of get a picture of the screenplay being written on a roll of toilet paper by a couple of drunk pretentious intellectuals looking for an excuse to get some young actresses to take their clothes off. Which would in that case be the one side of this movie that would seem perfectly reasonable to me. I'm sure there is an intellectual masterpiece in there somewhere. A deeper meaning. But life is just to short to look for it. I simply cannot bear to watch this one again.
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