"Sachiko Hanai" tells poignant tale of a prostitute whose bullet-wounded brain turns her into an intellectual superwoman surfing waves of nymphomania, hallucinogenic seizures, and the psychic control of George W. Bush's cloned finger. But the crazy ideas in Takao Nakano's script just fitfully amuse under Mitsuru Meike's draggy direction.

“The Glamorous Life of Sachiko Hanai” tells poignant tale of a prostitute whose bullet-wounded brain turns her into an intellectual superwoman surfing waves of nymphomania, hallucinogenic seizures, and the psychic control of George W. Bush’s cloned finger. If outrageous concepts were all, this latest fillip in the oft-eccentric history of Japanese “pink” (softcore sexploitation) cinema would be genius. But the crazy ideas in Takao Nakano’s script just fitfully amuse under Mitsuru Meike’s draggy direction. Pic will attract diehard cultists on DVD.

Basically a prank in need of Takashi Miike’s delirious energy, the film has Emi Kuroda as Sachiko, a young sex worker who specializes in private tutor scenarios. (“Horny Home Tutor: Teacher’s Love Juice” is the alternative monicker given the pic’s much-trimmed, more-sex; less-surrealism cut for the Nippon pink market.) When she gets in the way of a terrorist deal gone awry, her personality suffers changes that bewilder and delight the family of a philosophy professor she moves in with. Meanwhile, an assassin stalks her to regain the cloned presidential digit she’s accidentally walked off with. Uninspired staging and pacing manage the near-impossible feat of rendering such lunatic concepts dull.

The Glamorous Life of Sachiko Hanai

Japan

Production

A Kokuei Co. production. Produced by Kinugawa Nakahito, Morita Kazuto, Masuko Kyoichi. Executive producer, Asakura Daisuke. Directed by Mitsuru Meike. Screenplay, Takao Nakano.

Crew

Camera (color), Hiroshi Ito; editor, Naokki Kaneko; music, Taro Hishioka; production designer, Meike. Reviewed at San Francisco Film Festival, April 25, 2006. Running time: 91 MIN.

With

Emi Kuroda, Yukijiro Hotaru, Kyoko Hayami, Tetsuaki Matsue, Takeshi Ito.
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