Really strange and perverted movie, but I wouldn't expect much less from Nagisa Oshima
Sing a Song of Sex, or 'A Treatise on Japanese Bawdy Songs' (frankly I can't really tell you which title is better) is done by a filmmaker who has a kind of poker face, and only reveals his hand just slightly half-way through, so that by the end you really feel the collective punch of his full show of cards. It's a story that has a melancholy air to it, but suffused with a captivating sense of irony and self-consciousness ultimately with itself. Its main characters really couldn't give a damn, except to get laid, and in a way it's like the twisted older cousin of an American Pie movie... only without the bawdy jokes and replaced with bawdy songs, I guess.
This film takes a look at aimless youths finishing high school and getting ready for college who after the sudden death of a teacher wander about singing the same song of sex (going through ten scenarios through the song), and imagining raping a girl in a classroom. There is also a girlfriend of sorts (or two) who follow with their pack, and at one point they come across a group singing protest songs in English. But mostly not a whole lot "happens" except that Oshima gets precisely and dangerously into the minds of his politically conscious - or un-conscious- minds. What do these four boys think about? What's their plan or play? What about the one student who may or may not (or not likely) have been able to save the teacher's life? The style starts out very realistically, which opens it up for how bizarre it gets later on since nothing seems too self-conscious, but everything has on another air of fantasy to it. The last ten minutes gets especially brutal, though all with a slow and uncomfortably surreal boil (by uncomfortable I mean as a compliment). It's a mature, super-black comic work by a director who knows how to put the camera in positions that make his characters more than just figures in a frame but figures set against the backdrops they're in (snow, city buildings, bridges, crowds, the empty school room).
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