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Ritual of Love (1990)
"Rito d'amore" (original title)

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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 18 users  
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This movie is based on the true story that made headlines all over the world: the story of a relationship gone sour between a Japanese man very much in love with a French model. Some time ... See full summary »


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Credited cast:
Valérie Bouc ...
Larry Huckmann
Francesco Casale
Natalia Bizzi
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Mathieu Carrière ...
Daniel Longet
Tobias Hoesl ...
Klaus Löwitsch ...
Countess Verrani
Roland Wybenga ...


This movie is based on the true story that made headlines all over the world: the story of a relationship gone sour between a Japanese man very much in love with a French model. Some time later, it was discovered that the woman was turned into "sushi." At that time the man had already eaten a few body parts. To the arresting officers in Paris, he justified his acts as a proof of profound passion. In the late 80's many books and films find inspiration by the sinister love story. Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

2 September 1990 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Ritual of Love  »

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Box Office


$2,000,000 (estimated)

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User Reviews

Quite unusual erotic (horror-)drama
14 August 2002 | by (Zürich, Switzerland) – See all my reviews

Inspiration to this film was the true case of Japanese Issei Sagawa who, while studying in Paris, in the early 1980s, killed a fellow Dutch student and ate of her flesh. But viewers who expect sort of a cannibal movie are in the wrong picture. Director Aldo Lado (who made three excellent films in the 1970s with "La corta notte delle bambole di vetro", "Chi l'ha visto morire" and "L'ultimo treno della notte") puts the love story between young Japanese Yuro who, in Berlin, falls in love with a young local dancer and vice versa. They become obsessed with each other, and the intensive love story doesn't reach a happy end (of course).

Although the film mostly looks like a typical erotic drama of the late 1980s, the unusual plot and quite philosophical dialogue keep it interesting for the viewer. There is also one nasty nightmare sequence (which, at least, could satisfy fans of cannibal movies) to deliver some shock value. There is also a quite disturbing sequence, in which Yuro takes some skin from the dancer (deliberatly: she wants him to do that) and eats it to taste her (and she wants to know "how do I taste")! The only tedious moments are the few scenes, in which the dancer does her job: The scenes look like a cheap rehash of "Flashdance".

All in all, "Rito d'amore" has the problem that it doesn't really fit into a genre. It's too slow paced and talky for horror fans, it is too erotic and nasty for a drama, and the plot is too dark, disturbing and not "sexy" enough for an erotic film. It's probably the most unusual erotic drama ever made, and thus quite unique. Undoubtedly worth checking out: 6 out of 10.

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