Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Slit-Mouthed Woman (2005): or, Open Wide and Say AAAAAAAUGH!

October Horror Movie Challenge, Day 11!
A doctor and a nurse working the graveyard shift at a hospital specializing in cosmetic surgery retire to a forbidden, closed-off room for a little stress-relieving sex--or quite a lot of it, actually. Unfortunately, the rumpy-pumpy is interrupted by the appearance of the Slit-Mouthed Woman--a long-haired ghost seeking revenge for the mutilation that earned her the name. Three years later, the hospital is abandoned and the ghost a popular urban legend. A journalist writing for a Cosmo-esque magazine who was tasked with writing an article on the story disappears a few days before deadline, and pretty young go-getter Yoko is tasked with finishing the story. As she investigates the Slit-Mouthed Woman's history, she and her live-in stepsister Kazumi are drawn deeper into a mystery that will soon threaten their happiness, if not their lives.

I really don't have that much to say about The Slit-Mouthed Woman. I didn't know anything about it before queuing it up on Netflix instant, but I believe it's an example of the pinku genre of Japanese film, short movies that typically mix extreme genre film-making (often horror, martial arts, true crime, and/or ultraviolence) with tons and tons of softcore sex. The ghost story is competently done, drawing from a well-known and fairly creepy Japanese legend you can read more about here. The woman's first appearance is pretty scary, though her subsequent materializations diminish the overall effect with their clockwork regularity: people enter the hospital, they have borderline-explicit sex (including many, MANY lingering shots of sloppy tongue-kissing--director Takaaki Hashiguchi clearly has a fetish), and then BOOM, ghostliness. The journalist's story is really just a framework for these vignettes. Basically it plays out like Skinemax international, only with better acting.

If you're the sort of person who likes ghostly urban legends and lots of nudity and sex, this is a good way to spend just over an hour of your time. Slight, but not terrible. 1.75 thumbs.

Nota bene: there are several movies based on this story, apparently, including this one from Asia Extreme. The one on Netflix instant is *not* that movie.

No more ribs before bedtime!

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