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Zenka onna: Koroshi-bushi (1973)

After her father is exploited and killed by a yakuza gang, a tough woman, fresh out of prison, exacts her revenge over said gang with the help of three girls she met in prison.


Atsushi Mihori


Fumio Kônami (screenplay), Hirô Matsuda (screenplay)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Reiko Ike ... Maki Hashima
Miki Sugimoto ... Masayo Tani
Chiyoko Kazama Chiyoko Kazama ... Natsuko Kimura
Masami Sôda Masami Sôda ... Yukie Nakagawa
Yumiko Katayama Yumiko Katayama ... Kaoru Ashida
Ryôji Hayama Ryôji Hayama ... Boss Kiichi Oba
Shinzô Hotta Shinzô Hotta ... Hayami
Seiya Satô Seiya Satô ... Sugai
Keiichi Kitagawa Keiichi Kitagawa ... Yabuki
Tooru Hanada Tooru Hanada ... Ogata
Bontarô Miake Bontarô Miake ... Yasutarô Hamada(Hamayasu)
Takeo Chii Takeo Chii ... Tetsu Hamada
Hiroshi Date Hiroshi Date ... Ôshima
Hirohisa Nakata Hirohisa Nakata ... Miyamoto
Naoyuki Sugano Naoyuki Sugano ... Teruo


Reiko Ike stars as the daughter of a man who has been pushed into drug dealing by the local Yakuza mob. Having outlived his usefulness to the gang he is murdered and Reiko is gang raped, leading her to attempt a knife attack on the Yakuza boss (Ryoji Hayama) at a swank nightclub. Failing to kill him she ends up in prison, where she befriends a crew of other malcontents (including Yumiko Katayama and Chiyoko Kazama) and meets the Yakuza boss's girlfriend (Miki Sugimoto). Upon release Reiko reassembles her mob and launches a Machiavellian scheme to engineer a gang war between Hayama's Oba Industries and the formerly dominant Hamayasu Clan. The rival gangs begin killing each other off and Reiko works her way closer to her ultimate vengeance. Written by rabbit541

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Action | Crime | Thriller







Release Date:

27 October 1973 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Criminal Woman: Killing Melody See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Toei Company See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Featured in Babes Behind Bars (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

Awesome Pinky Flick With Reiko & Miki

In 1972 and 1973, Japanese Exploitation cinema brought us the four greatest "Women In Prison" themed films in the history of motion pictures with the "Joshuu Sasori" flicks starring the great Meiko Kaji (Especially the first three films, directed by Shunya Ito, rank high on my personal all-time favorite list). It is amazing that the follow-up on the list of the greatest WIP-flicks is also a Japanese film, that belongs in the great Pinky Violence sub-genre and was released in 1973. Well, technically it's not really a traditional WIP flick, but an absolutely awesome female gangster/revenge flick that starts out in a women's prison. "Zenka onna: koroshi-bushi" aka "Criminal Woman: Killing Melody" of 1973 is a fantastic entry to the Pinky Violence sub-genre that no fellow exploitation buff should consider missing. Even though he never directed anything else, director Atsushi Mihori created an awesome gem of Japanese Exploitation cinema with this flick, brought to you by the great Toei Company. Starring the ravishing genre-goddesses Reiko Ike and Miki Sugimoto, "Criminal Woman" once again delivers style, a vast amount of sleaze and violence, and also, more than most other examples for the genre, a fantastic plot.

The ravishing Reiko Ike stars as Maki, a girl who has to go to prison after trying to avenge her father, who was murdered by a local Yakuza clan. She befriends some other bad-girls in prison, the toughest being the heavily tattooed, and equally hot Massayo (played by the ravishing Miki Sugimoto), who is involved with the Yakuza. Throughout her prison term, Maki just has the sole goal to finish her revenge once she gets out...

Reiko Ike and Miki Sugimoto are both ravishing and super-cool, and it is hard to say which one of the two deserves her status as a cult-siren more (in terms of pure beauty my personal choice would be Miki, but they're both very hot and very bad-ass). The two starred together in a bunch of films (such as "Girl Boss Guerilla", "Girl Boss Revenge" and "Terrifying Girls' Highshool: Lynch Law Classroom") and each of the ladies starred in a bunch of highlights alone (Miki Sugimoto's most memorably in "Zero Woman Red Handcuffs", Reiko Ike in "Sex And Fury" and "Female Yakuza Tale"). "Criminal Woman: Killing Melody" is one of the highlights of either woman's career, an immensely stylish, supremely bad-ass and absolutely awesome gem that is a must-see for every lover of Exploitation and/or Japanese cinema. Also great are Yumiko Katayama, Chiyoko Kazama and Masami Sôda, who make a beautiful female supporting cast as their fellow inmates in Women's prison. The film is action-packed and stylish from the very beginning, with a funky score and a genre-typical beautiful theme song. All things considered "Criminal Woman: Killing Melody" is an excellent Pinky-gem that no lover of Japanese Exploitation cinema could possibly afford to miss! Awesome!

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