Vault Shorts #8 (Crying Free Sex, Cycle Cycle, Kawaguchi 4256)

The eighth entry in the column deals with Japanese shorts

Crying Free Sex (2017) by Tomohiro Iwasaki (15.11 minutes)



Japan has always been the foremost movie industry in the production of curios to the point of wtf movies, and "Crying Free Sex" definitely continues this legacy.

The totally absurd script revolves around two secret agents, Naomi and Cobra, who, before embarking on their mission, decide to have sex, after the instigation of the former. However, the woman does not realize that the issue with Cobra's genitalia, that has actually given his nickname, will bring them so much trouble. Soon, they find themselves stuck (you know what I mean) and having to face scores of enemies that include agents in black suits and samurais, as they embark on a trip that brings in a number of places.

Taking the sex and shooting scene from Michael Davis's "Shoot "Em Up" as its base (parodying it actually), Tomohiko Iwasaki directs a truly preposterous film, through a combination of exploitation and manga aesthetics with some splashes of slapstick comedy. Everything in the movie, from the erotic and the action scenes, to the script, the cinematography, the SFX,  the editing and the music point towards this direction and result in a true curio, in Japanese fashion.  To conclude the nonsensical notions of the film, Allen Ai, who appeared in Kim Ki-duk's "Stop", plays Naomi.

"Crying Free Sex" evidently, is addressed solely to the fans of the Japanese extreme film, but I think that Tomohiko  Iwasaki really has what it takes to shoot a feature splatter film, in the style of Yoshihiro Nishimura.

Cycle Cycle (2017) by Junichi Kanai (18.13 minutes)



Two high school boys, Junpei and Satoshi, start a bicycle trip around Japan on a tandem. Soon they argue, because Satoshi thinks that by staying in the back sit he cannot get more followers from the posts he shares on Facebook. Since Junpei cannot sit in the back because he gets dizzy, Satoshi decides to leave him and the duo splits up. Junpei keeps going on his own trip by bicycle and picks up a hitchhiker named Mitsuru to ride with him. Mitsuru is heading to his grandfather’s house who he hasn’t seen for years. However when they reach the house, they find a dead body in the room…

Junichi Kanai directs a delightful short, filled with humor (check the ways Junpei implements to keep Mitsuru from leaving) and a number of comments regarding modern Japanese society. The role social media play, particularly in the lives of youths, friendship, the way the elderly are treated, and the concepts of family and friendship (no road is long with good company) are the central ones. Add to that the beautiful cinematography which highlights the country with some elaborate framing and the very fitting music, and you have a very nice short, which follows most "rules" of the Japanese indie film, which is the genre I would like to see Jinichi Kanai dealing in feature form, in the future.

Kawaguchi 4256 (2017) by Anshul Chauhan (30 minutes)


As Anshul Chauhan stated in an interview I had with him, "I shot a short film in December of 2016 (Kawaguchi 4256​) that featured Shuna (Iijima), Orson (Mochizuki) and Takashi (Kawaguchi). My real intention for making that film was just to test these three actors for my feature, though they were not aware of this. That short film helped me see them clearly and understand them in a better way, allowing me to write my feature with them in mind". "Kawaguchi 4256" however, is much more than just a "prequel".

After the death of their matriarch, a dysfunctional family of four (two sons and a daughter) is reluctantly reunited under one roof. The three siblings are quite different from each other, since Aki, the oldest one, is a rebellious hip hop artist, Jun a young woman on the brink of a nervous breakdown, and Tetsu, a happy-go-lucky young man, at least on the outside. Tensions clash when the father, on one of his alcoholic fits, becomes violent against Aki, and even more, when he announces that he is about to get remarried, just six months after his wife's death.

Anshul Chauhan directs a short which deals, as "Bad Poetry Tokyo", with the concepts of family and the consequences of abuse, particularly when directed from parents to their children. His take on the subjects is rather obvious, with the blame being put directly on the father, who seems to care about nothing apart for himself, his factory, and his "values", which mirror the traditional ones of the previous generation, about appearances and respect. In this awful setting, his children try to find different ways to "escape", although they do not seem able to. Through this concept, Chauhan creates a sense of claustrophobia which is further stressed by Sam King's cinematography, whose camera fills the film with close shots, with the sole exception of a scene by the sea. What remains in the end, is the fact that violence creates more violence, in a concept that is stressed repeatedly throughout the film.

The acting is quite good, with Orson Mochizuki as Aki and Motokatsu Suzuki as Father, being the ones who stand out, both as individuals and through their differences.

"Kawaguchi 4256" is a herald of all the artistry and meaningfulness that featured in "Bad Poetry Tokyo", but also a very interesting spectacle by itself.


COMMENTS

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13 Assassins,1,2017,3,A Company Man,1,A few words about us,1,A Lonely Cow Weeps at Dawm,1,A Love,1,A Man Vanishes,1,A Simple Life,1,A Single Rider,1,A Stone from Another Mountain to Polish Your Own Stone. Go Shibata,1,A Tale of Love,1,A Whale of a Tale,1,About Elly,1,Adam J. Symchuk,20,Adam John,6,Aditya Vikram Sengupta,1,Adriana Rosati,4,Age of Innocence,1,Akihiko Shiota,1,Akira Kurosawa,1,Akiyuki Shinbo,1,Ale Amout,1,Alex Oost,1,Alexander Knoth,1,Ali Asghar Vadayeh Kheiri,1,Amir Masoud Aghababeian,1,Amitabh Reza,1,Anand Singh,2,Andrew Thayne,4,Andy Willis,1,Anime,1,Animesh Aich,1,Ann Hui,1,Anna Bliss,3,Anshul Chauhan,2,Anurag Basu,1,Aqerat,1,Arang,1,Ariyuki Shinbo,1,Armour of God,1,Arrow,2,Art Film Fest Kosice,1,Article Films,1,Asghar Farhadi,1,Asha Jaoar Majhe,1,Asian Classics,19,Aya Itabe,1,Aynabaji,1,Bad Poetry Tokyo,4,BAMY,1,Bangkok Nites,1,Bangladesh,3,Banjong Pisanthanakun,1,Banmei Takahashi,1,Before We Vanish,1,Behind the Camera,1,Belgium,1,Ben Stykuc,5,Bengal,1,Bhutan,1,Billy Joe,2,Black,1,Bloody Muscle Builder in Hell,1,Bollywood,1,Branded to Kill,2,Breathless,1,Burma,1,Burning Birds,2,Bystanders,1,Cambodia,2,Camera Japan,10,Children Heaven,1,China,6,Chinese Policy Institute,6,Chinese Visual Festival,1,Choi Jin-ho,1,Choi Jin-won,1,Chris Berry,1,Chu Yuan,1,Chungking Express,1,Close-Knit,1,Coffeemates,1,Colette Balmain,7,Competition,1,Confessions,1,Creative Visions: Hong Kong Cinema,1,Crocodile,1,Crows Zero,1,Cyrano Agency,1,Daguerreotype,1,Daigo Matsui,1,Daisuke Gotô,2,Daisuke Miyazaki,3,David Chew,3,David Chew.,1,David Shin,1,Ddongpari,1,Dead Friend,1,Dead Sushi,1,Deadly Outlaw: Rekka,1,Deepak Rauniyar,1,Destruction Babies,1,Diary of June,1,Digger,1,Ding Shen,1,Dismembered,1,Documentaries,6,Documentary,2,Doenjang,1,Don Anelli,18,Double Life,1,Dr. Heo,1,drama,1,Duelist,1,East Winds Film Festival,1,Edmund Yeo,3,Educating Yuna,1,Eiji Uchida,1,Emmanuel Horlaza,1,Erotic Diary of an Office Lady,1,Eureka,2,Exploitation,25,Fabricated City,1,Faye Wong,1,Features,18,Feautures,1,Fel,8,Festivals,5,Filmdoo,6,Fireworks,1,Fireworks Should We See It from the Side or the Bottom?,1,Five Flavors Festival,2,Five Flavours Festival,3,Flying Fish,1,Forgetting Vietnam,1,France,1,Fraser Elliott,1,Funeral Parade of Roses,1,Fuyuhiko Nishi,1,Gillian Anderson,1,Golden Horse Awards,1,Good -Bye Silence,1,Goro Miyazaki,1,Hanagatami,1,Hanuman,1,Hashiguchi Takaaki,1,Haunters,1,Helsinki Cine Aasia Festival 2018,1,Hidden Gems,34,Hideo Sakaki,1,High-Kick Girl,1,Hindi,1,Hirokazu Koreeda,3,Hiroshi Ando,1,Hiroshi Teshigahara,1,Hong Kong,4,Horror,2,I Wish,1,I-Lin Liu,8,ICA,3,Im Kyeong-soo,1,Imran Firdaus,1,In this Corner of the World,3,Indonesia,4,Interview,1,Interviews,23,Intimate Confessions of a Chinese Courtesan,1,Inugami,1,Iran,7,Ishmael Bernal,1,Isora Iwakiri,1,Jackie Chan,2,Jagga Jasoos,1,James Mudge,1,Japan,117,Japan Cuts,14,Japan Filmfest Hamburg,1,Japanese Film Festival Australia,1,Jeong Jae-eun,1,Jess Teong,1,Jimmy Henderson,2,Jithin K Mohan,1,Joe Odagiri,2,Johnnie To,1,Joko Anwar,1,Jonathan Wilson,6,Joo Ji-hong,1,Journey of the Tortoise,1,Jun Tanaka,1,Jung Yoon-suk,1,Junichi Kajioka,1,Junpei Mizusaki,1,K-dramas,12,Kaneto Shindo,1,Kang Je-gyu,1,Kang Yoon-Sung,1,Katsuya Tomita,1,kdrama,1,Kei Chikaura,1,Kei Ishikawa,1,Kengo Yagawa,1,Kenichi Ugana,1,Kill me,1,Killing Beauty,1,Kim Eun-hee,1,Kim Hong-seon,1,Kim Hyun-seok,1,Kim Jee-woon,1,Kim Ki-duk,1,Kim Kih-hoon,1,Kim Min Su kII,1,Kim Min-suk,1,Kim Tae-kyeong,1,Kingyo,2,Kirti Raj Singh,1,Kiss me,1,Kiyoshi Kurosawa,3,Koji Wakamatsu,1,Komiya Masatetsu,1,Kon Ichikawa,1,Konrad Aderer,1,Korea,1,korean drama,1,Krzysztof Pietrzak,1,Kun-Yu Lai,2,Kwak Kyung-taek,1,Kyoko Miyake,1,Kyriacos Kyriacou,2,Lady Snowblood,2,Laos,1,Lee Je-Yong,1,Lee Joo-young,1,Lee Jung-sun,1,Lee Myung-se,1,Lee Seo-goon,1,Leung Wing-Fai,1,Like Father,1,Like Son,1,Lim Sang-yoon,1,Lists,11,Little Big Soldier,1,Live Up To Your Name,1,Loi Bao,1,Los Angeles Indian Festival,1,Love,1,Lovers Are Wet,1,Lowlife Love,1,Lyberis,2,Madman,1,Mahde Hasan,1,Majid Majidi,1,Makoto Shinkai,1,Malaysia,5,Maria Georgiou,18,Mark Gallagher,1,Masaki Adachi,1,Masanori Tominaga,1,Masaru Konume,1,Masato Harada,1,Masatoshi Kurakata,1,Matt Cooper,9,Matthew D. Johnson,1,Maundy Thursday,1,Mermaid,1,Midi Z,1,Midori Impuls,3,Milk the Maid,1,Minoru Kunizawa,1,Miwa Nishikawa,1,Mohammad-Reza Lotfi,1,Mongolia,1,Moon Lovers,1,Mototsugu Watanabe,4,Movie,1,Mr. Socrates,1,My Dad and Mr Ito,1,My Hero Chihiro,1,Myanmar,1,Nanachan,1,Naoko Ogigami,1,Naomi Kawase,1,Naosuke Kurosawa,1,Naoyuki Tomomatsu,3,Neko Atsume House,1,Nepal,1,New Neighbor,2,News,1,Nicholas Poly,3,Nikola Cekic,1,Niwatsukino Norihiro,1,Noboru Iguchi,1,Nobuhiko Obayashi,2,Nobuhiro Yamashita,2,Nobuo Nakagawa,1,Nobuyuki Takeuchi,1,Noise,2,Non-fiction Diary,1,Norman England,2,Nurse Diary: Beast Afternoon,1,NYAFF,7,Nyamdavaa Baasansuren,1,Oh In-Chun,1,Old Boy,2,Omar Rasya Joenoes,3,On The Line Festival,2,Ophilia,1,Orson McClellan Mochizuki,1,Osaka Asian Film Festival,4,Osamu Sato,1,Our Happy time,1,Over the Fence,1,Pai Kau,1,Palatpol Mingpornpichit,1,Panos Kotzathanasis,57,Park Chan-wook,2,Park Ki- hyung,1,Park Kwang-hyun,1,Parkpoom Wongpoom,1,Pedro Morata,3,Peerachai Kerdsint,1,Pen-Ek Ratanaruang,1,Peng Xiaolian,1,Peque Gallaga,1,Philippines,1,Pieter - Jan Van Haecke,3,Pieter-Jan Van Haecke,7,Pink Eiga,14,PinkEiga.TV,6,pinku eiga,1,Psychic,1,Pumpkin and Mayonnaise,1,Rabbit and Lizard,1,Railway Sleepers,1,Raja Mukhriz,1,Randy Mckenzie,3,Rape Zombie: Lust of the Dead,1,Rape Zombie: Lust of the Dead 2,1,Red Persimmons,1,Rei Sakamoto,1,Reipu zonbi: Lust of the dead 3,1,Reviews,64,Reviews.,1,River of Exploding Durians,2,Roger Lee,1,Ronja,1,Ryu Kaneda,1,Ryuki,1,S. 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Team,1,Shake Rattle and Roll,1,Shaw Brothers,1,She's the Boss,1,Shift,1,Shigeru Umebayashi,1,Shikhar Verma,3,Shikhar Verna,2,Shim Sung-Bo,1,Shinichi Fukazawa,1,Shinji Iwai,1,Shinji Sômai,1,Shinjuku Swan,1,Shinjuku Triad Society,1,Shinsuke Ogawa,1,Shinya Tsukamoto,2,Shôhei Imamura,1,Shoot for the Contents,1,Shorts,8,Shuna Iijima,1,Shutter,1,Siddiq Ahamed,1,Sidi Saleh,1,Signature,1,Sinophone,1,Sion Sono,4,Sixth Sense Hooker,1,Sogo Ishii,1,Soichi Umezawa,1,Sompot Chidgasompongse,2,Song Hae-sung,1,Song of the Week,19,Sopawan Boonnimitra,1,South Korea,15,Sri Lanka,2,Still the Water,1,Strange Circus,1,Studio Ghibli,1,StudioCanal,3,Subenja Pongkorn,1,Suffering of Ninko,1,Suicide Club,1,Sunao Katabuchi,3,Sung-hong Kim,1,Susumu Hirasawa,1,Tadashi Nagayama,1,Tae Guk Gi,1,Takaaki Hashiguchi,1,Takashi Miike,4,Take Care of My Cat,1,Takuro Nakamura,2,Tatsumi Kumashiro,1,Tetsuo the Iron Man,1,Tetsuya Mariko,1,Tetsuya Nakashima,1,Thailand,7,That's It,1,The Bad,1,The Boy and the Beast,2,The boy from Ipanema,1,The Crawler in the Attic,1,The Dollhouse,1,The elephant and the sea,2,The Executioner,1,The Forest Whispers,1,The Good,1,The Inugami Family,1,The Isthmus,1,The Kid from the Big Apple,1,The King of Pigs,1,The Man Without a Map,1,The Muse,1,The Naked Island,1,The Night of the Earthquake,1,The Outlaws,1,The recipe,1,The Road Home,1,The Road to Mandalay,1,the Robber's Daughter,1,The Room,1,The Sacrament,1,The Salesman,1,The Snow King,1,The Sower,2,The Story of the Disappearance of Maryam,1,The Strange Saga of Hiroshi the Freeloading Sex Machine,1,The Suicide Chain,1,The Tokyo Night Sky is Always the Densest Shade of Blue,1,The Weird,1,Tôkaidô Yotsuya kaidan,1,Tokyo Heaven,1,Tokyo Idols,1,Tokyo Vampire Hotel,1,Tolerance Film Festival,1,Tom Waller,1,Tony Leung,1,Toronto International Film Festival,1,Toshiaki Toyoda,1,Toshio Matsumoto,1,Toshiya Fujita,1,Traces of Sin,1,Train to Busan,1,Tran Ham,1,Trinh T. Minh-Ha,3,Twilight Dinner,1,Twitch: You Are My Toy,1,Uncovered,1,Vampire Clay,1,various,2,Victor Vu,1,Vietnam,2,Vikram Zushi,1,Violated Angels,1,Vital,1,West North West,2,Whispering Corridors,1,White Sun,1,Whore Angel,1,Wiman Rizkidarajat,1,Without Memory,1,Wol-Ha: Very Bad Moon Rising,1,Woman of the Lake,1,Woo Ming Jin,1,Yamato (California),3,Yang Ik-june,1,Yang Jong-hyeon,1,Yeon Sang-ho,2,Yiu-wai Chu,1,Yoshishige Yoshida,1,Yoshitaka Mori,1,Yoshiyuki Kishi,1,Yosuke Takeuchi,2,Yotsuya kaidan,1,Your Name,1,Yu Aoi,2,Yu Irie,1,Yûji Tajiri,2,Yuki Tanada,1,Yusaku Matsumoto,2,Yutaka Ikejima,3,Yuya Ishii,1,Zen,1,Zhang Yimou,1,Zoo,1,Zuairijah Mou,1,
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Asian Film Vault: Vault Shorts #8 (Crying Free Sex, Cycle Cycle, Kawaguchi 4256)
Vault Shorts #8 (Crying Free Sex, Cycle Cycle, Kawaguchi 4256)
The eighth entry in the column deals with Japanese shorts
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