Female Prisioner Scorpion : The Complete Collection

FPS1Nami Matsushima (Meiko Kaji) sets out on a series of revenege tales to cleanse her worn down and beaten soul. From corrupt business man, to family connections. These four films cover the naive and easily lead Nami introduction to a world of suffering in prision, through to horrorific revenges and finally her becoming an accomplised and sadistic murderer of all those that cross her.

FPS3Japanese exploitation cinema is often a delight of crude sexuality, rebellious gender dynamics and violence galore. I could recommend many different films to explore in these genres if you havent explored them but I would actually suggest looking into the work of the voices and talent that produced the content for this amazing box set for the series. Jasper Sharp, Kat Ellinger and Tom Mes all have far more valuable and interesting insight into this and the genre at large. I will sa that the series peaks at the first film (#701 Scropion)  and then has a steady but not significant decline to the final film. The first film is visually clever and has great grim scenes, violence that is hard and forceful in tone. The sequal or second film (Jailhouse 41) is less about content and far more about very stunning set pieces. The third film is a favourite for a friday unwinding (Beast Stable) its an experiment in genre cross over and was a fave of the previous release…The forth film (#701 Grudge Song) was absent from that release but is ok enough for a single viewing…

FPS4All in all the films are great. Keji is a stunning leading lady and gives us hard and soft, tender and vicious. If i was asked I would still say to start with her career masterpiece Lady Snowblood but this is a worthy film about the shift in female roles, gender dynamics and a Japan that was in a post war wake up for its youth. Clever and controlled in places but also a touch of the unhinged and unstable. It has greatness in its frames as well as it having utter horror in its core makeup. Like it or not it is a must watch for film fans.

 

FPS2You can see below all that is on offer but I can add that the improved transfer on the Blu is grand compared to its previous release. The booklet and extras are good but Jasper Sharps work stands out for its insight and his ability to make it compelling. Kat Ellinger is also a great ambassador for film and cult film but here she shines with the affection shown and the intellegence inside of that.

LIMITED EDITION CONTENTS

 

  • Limited Edition Blu-ray collection (4000 copies)
  • Brand new 2K restorations of all four films in the series presented on High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD
  • Original mono audio (uncompressed PCM on the Blu-rays) for all films
  • Optional English subtitles for all films
  • Double-sided fold out poster of two original artworks
  • Reversible sleeves for all films featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Ian MacEwan
  • Booklet featuring new writing on the film by critic Chuck Stephens, a brand new interview with Toru Shinohara, creator of the original Scorpion manga and an archive interview with Meiko Kaji by Chris D. illustrated with original stills

 

FEMALE PRISONER #701: SCORPION

  • Newly filmed appreciation by filmmaker Gareth Evans (The Raid)
  • Shunya Ito: Birth of an Outlaw, an archive interview with the director
  • Scorpion Old and New, a new interview with assistant director Yutaka Kohira
  • Theatrical Trailers for all four films in the series

 

FEMALE PRISONER SCORPION: JAILHOUSE 41

  • Newly filmed appreciation by critic Kier-La Janisse
  • Japanese cinema critic Jasper Sharp looks over the career of Shunya Ito
  • Designing Scorpion, a new interview with production designer Tadayuki Kuwana
  • Original Theatrical Trailer and Teaser

 

FEMALE PRISONER SCORPION: BEAST STABLE

  • Newly filmed appreciation by critic Kat Ellinger
  • Shunya Ito: Directing Meiko Kaji, an archive interview with the director
  • Unchained Melody, a new visual essay by Tom Mes on the career of Meiko Kaji
  • Original Theatrical Trailer and Teaser

 

FEMALE PRISONER SCORPION: #701’s GRUDGE SONG

  • Newly filmed appreciation by filmmaker Kazuyoshi Kumakiri (Kichiku: Banquet of the Beasts)
  • Yasuharu Hasebe: Finishing the Series, an archive interview with the director
  • Japanese cinema critic Jasper Sharp looks over the career of Yasuharu Hasebe
  • They Call Her Scorpion, a new visual essay by Tom Mes on the film series
  • Original Theatrical Trailer

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