Friday, June 21, 2013

Film&Fashion Fridays: Female Convict Scorpion Jailhouse 41

...with the crazy rain/shine weather we've been having lately, all i can think about are trench coats and big hats.

And what better inspiration for this look than the iconic revenge-driven Meiko Kaji in the 1970s exploitation trilogy Female Convict Scorpion?

I only saw the second installment of the story, Jailhouse 41, as part of a Toei Studios retrospective at the Cinematheque two years ago.

It was a beautifully restored pristine 35mm print with crazy colors in cinemascope with eerie music. But the musical score is definitely not the most bizarre part of the film : following a jailbreak, a group a women find themselves in an abandoned village populated by ghosts, witches and evil spirits.

It's a horror/pinku/sexploitation flick that's visually stunning and very entertaining; of course, there's a group rape, a crucifixion and a healthy dose of blood as in any other exploitation movie, but this one makes some twisted and brave points for female empowerment and the violence against women.

I'm not the biggest gore/thriller fan and this film is pretty mild, while crude. The surreal imagery and saturated frames make for a stunning visual trip.

And then the clothes! My absolute favorite must be Scorpion's typical 70s badass trench+floppy hat get up at the end of the movie, but I'm also smitten with the inmates' uniforms (I mean navy shift dresses with tie dye stripes?? please and thank you!) and the creative use of grey draping blankets as coats. It almost feels like a distilled cross between Isabel Marant x Gareth Pugh x Hussein Chalayan.

...if all this didn't convince you, might I add that it inspired Tarantino's Kill Bill?  Then again, the same thing could arguably be said about any Japanese exploitation flick...

 Have a great weekend everyone!

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