Female Prisoner Scorpion: Beast Stable
Matsu is sheltered by an incestuous prostitute on her run from the police, her ex-prison mate and a cop whose arm she hacked off.Matsu is sheltered by an incestuous prostitute on her run from the police, her ex-prison mate and a cop whose arm she hacked off.Matsu is sheltered by an incestuous prostitute on her run from the police, her ex-prison mate and a cop whose arm she hacked off.
Unlike the first film, an entertaining exploitation sleaze-fest, or the second, the quasi-feminist trippy road film, the third one is a lot more serious and quite darker than the first two. The pacing is much slower, the colors much dimmer, and the setting is mostly urban, except for the final 10 minutes which do take place in prison.
Once again, Meiko Kaji barely says anything (on her request, because she felt that her character in the first film was too obscene), but still has a great screen presence. The story is, unfortunately, not that memorable. Aside from exploitative elements such as a prostitute pregnant with her retarded brother's child, the entire film just feels like it packs lesser of a punch than the first two did. There's an interesting sub-plot where a guy blackmails Matsu into being his girlfriend or else he'll turn her in, but that gets resolved way too quickly. The main villain is fine, but the other one, the ex-inmate turned brothel owner and a Cruella DeVille lookalike, is so ridiculous and annoying. She also keeps a huge cage of crows for some reason (which later gives way for a short but bad visual effect of a flying crow), maybe to resemble a comic book villain, but that feels out of place.
The surreal elements are also fewer. Even though the abortion scene set in a white room with blood splattering all over is very good, the others consist of applying lazy filters to the image, or focusing on the motif of matches being struck and thrown, which I admittedly don't get. Unfortunately, Meiko Kaji doesn't sing a second theme song here (like she did in the previous film) and overall the movie just feels uneventful, despite the strong beginning and a stylish ending scene. Great cover art, though.
- Aug 8, 2016