A smooth-talking septuagenarian sporting a rakish beret moves into a building housing seven little old ladies and proceeds to romance them, singly and <I>en masse</I>. Lilies bloom left and right, to borrow one woman's metaphor for orgasm, as juices and coyness flow in equal measure.

A smooth-talking septuagenarian sporting a rakish beret moves into a building housing seven little old ladies and proceeds to romance them, singly and en masse. Lilies bloom left and right, to borrow one woman’s metaphor for orgasm, as juices and coyness flow in equal measure. “Lily Festival” is the second “overground” film by Sachi Hamano, veteran director/producer of some 300 “pink eiga” soft-core porn pics, now bent on making feminist films on taboo subjects like the sexual drives of post-menopausal women. Pic’s tastefully explicit sexual content is somewhat mitigated by its elbow-nudging cuteness, but its sisterly solidarity and homoerotic surprises may win it a niche in femme and gay markets.

“Lily” profits greatly from charisma of its thesps, particularly ex-rocker Mickey Curtis as the venerable rake and the still quite beauteous Kazuko Yoshiyuki (star of Oshima’s “In the Realm of Passion”) as film’s serene kimono-garbed central figure. Pic also has the distinction of being narrated by a dead woman who apparently hangs around to find out what happens next, spiritually occupying camera’s frequent overhead position. Tech credits are OK.

Lily Festival

Japan

Production

A Tantan-sha Ltd. production. Produced by Sachiko Suzuki. Directed by Sachi Hamano. Screenplay, Kuninori Yamazaki, from a novel by Houko Momotani.

Crew

Camera (color), Katuharu Oyamada; editor, Naoki Kaneko; music, Sigemi Yosioka; art director, Jin Sioda. Reviewed at Montreal World Film Festival (Focus on Japanese Cinema), Aug. 30, 2002. (Also in Hong Kong and Turin Women's Film Festivals.) Running time: 100 MIN.

With

Kazuko Yoshiyuki, Mickey Curtis, Utae Shoji, Kazuko Shirakawa, Sanae Nakahara, Chisako Hara, Hisako Okata.
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