The Glamorous Life of Sachiko Hanai

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Palm Pictures

NEW YORK -- Representing a melange designed to gladden the hearts of male geeks everywhere, "The Glamorous Life of Sachiko Hanai" combines soft-core porn with a fantastical sci-fi plot. While this example of Japan's long successful "Pink film" genre -- it dates back four decades or so -- is ultimately less than satisfying on either of its fronts, it does represent a rare chance to see one of these exotic efforts in a theatrical setting.

Expanded by about 30 minutes from the genre's usual hourlong length, Meike Mitsuru's film revolves around the adventures of its tawny, young titular heroine (Emi Kuroda), a young, hardworking prostitute who specializes in roleplay (the original title translated to "Horny Home Tutor: Teacher's Love Juice"). One day, Sachiko becomes the unfortunate random victim of a shootout between North Korean and Middle Eastern terrorists, winding up with a bullet in her brain that transforms her into a Kant-spouting genius who climaxes while reading Noah Chomsky.

She also mysteriously finds herself in possession of a cloned finger of George W. Bush, the one that has the power to push the button that will set off a nuclear attack. Needless to say, it falls upon her to prevent the world from being blown up.

Frequently pausing for mild erotic interludes that well show off the considerable physical charms of its star, the film is neither sexy enough nor witty enough to justify its wider exposure. It is best appreciated as an amusing curiosity that sheds some interesting sociological light on Japanese erotic appetites.
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