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Rope and Breasts (1983) reż. Masaru KonumaRope and Breasts (1983) reż. Masaru Konuma
Behind The Pink Curtain

"Pink film (pinku eiga) is the name of the genre of independent softcore erotic program pictures that have been produced for the big screen in vast numbers in Japan since the early 60s.

The films differ in several respects from the type of pornography one conventionally finds in other countries. Firstly, they are shot on 35mm and intended for theatrical release in a network of specialist cinemas in the nation's metropolitan areas, a phenomenon that disappeared completely throughout the rest of the world during the 80s but is still thriving in Japan.

Secondly, due to Japan's relatively strict screen censorship, enforced by the film censorship board Eirin, no depictions of genitals or sexual activity (the so-called "working parts" as Donald Richie calls them in his essay The Japanese Eroduction contained in his book A Lateral View) are allowed to be shown. Thirdly, over the past few decades, the pink film has provided a training ground for many of today's top directors, including Takahisa Zeze (Moon Child), Ryuichi Hiroki (Vibrator), Yojiro Takita (When the Last Sword is Drawn) and Masayuki Suo (Shall We Dance), as well as turning out such notable "enfants terribles" as Koji Wakamatsu, Banmei Takahashi and Masao Adachi.

The films themselves average about an hour in length, and aside from the necessity of containing a specified number of sex scenes, differ widely in their scope and ambition. Titillation may be the primary purpose, but aspects such as character, story and technical qualities are also given their due consideration".

Jasper Sharp: Pink Films special

Behind the Pink Curtain

The films presented within the Behind the Pink Curtain cycle may be controversial since their content and message are addressed to adult viewers.

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