Film Review: Lost Lovers (1971) by Kunio Shimizu and Soichiro Tahara

Specializing in the aftermath of the failed scholar revolution of the 1968-69, “Misplaced Lovers” appears to spotlight their defeat by evoking the ideas of former glory and present demise, in a reasonably uncommon street film which can be stuffed with (absurd) eroticism. 

The protagonist right here is Takeru, a former pole vaulting champion, who roams the streets aimlessly, making an attempt to rob folks to make a dwelling, whereas often performing with a band or making an attempt to assemble viewers to listen to his speeches, with all of his endeavors normally leading to failure. Throughout his “travels” he stumbles upon a younger couple who become deaf-mute, as they carry out in a grocery store, and decides to comply with them, despite the fact that initially the person beats him. Their widespread journey all through Honshu brings them into varied areas, together with the seaside and an deserted army warehouse of types. The companionship of the couple, and the entire method they conduct themselves have a huge effect on Takeru, however when some younger laborers from the city the warehouse lies take wind of the presence of the woman, all hell breaks free. 

Being the debut function of documentarian Soichiro Tahara and playwright Konio Shimizu, “Misplaced Lovers” combines parts of each practices, implementing a documentary-style cinematography, courtesy  of Yuji Okumura, and stage play aesthetics, because the monologue heavy efficiency of Renji Ishibashi as Takeru, factors immediately in direction of this path. On the identical time, there’s a permeating surrealism that additionally dominates the narrative, because the reactions and selections the protagonists make, will not be precisely logical in any method. The surrealism additionally extends to the general aesthetics, with Mitsuo Kondo’s modifying being one other major ingredient of this strategy, because the inclusion of scenes of Takeru practising pole vaulting, in essentially the most sudden second, eloquently highlights.  

By way of this uncommon strategy, Shimizu and Takahara make various feedback, both actually or by way of metaphors. That intercourse is a driving pressure for various actions and selections is likely one of the most evident, with the carrot incident, the truth that Takeru clearly follows the couple as a result of he lusts for the woman, the frequent intercourse the couple bask in, even in his presence, and the violent parts which might be included in direction of the tip, highlighting this remark in a reasonably appalling glory. 

The identical applies to violence, which is introduced as an idea current throughout, with each the protagonists and the assorted characters they meet, indulging in it and affected by it from time to time. 

By way of metaphor, that the youths of the period are misplaced is showcased each in Takeru and the couple, with the latter’s lack of any technique of precise expression mirroring the destiny of the younger folks usually. The identical applies that regardless of their will to dwell freely, they incessantly fall victims to the actions and wills of the “widespread folks”, in a remark that can be related with the violence and intercourse already talked about. As such, and regardless of an strategy that’s often fairly humorous and happy-go-lucky, significantly within the clownish method Takeru conducts himself, the premises of the film are reasonably pessimistic and dramatic.

Renji Ishibashi provides an absurdly spectacular efficiency, which calls for from him bodily as a lot as creative pressure, along with his virtually anorexic physique and his leaping, dancing, singing, combating, lusting conduct mirroring the film’s aesthetics to the fullest. Kaori Momoi because the silent woman can be spectacular as the primary supply of sensuality and the recipient of the voyeuristic ingredient of the film, together with her general look being reasonably engaging. 

“Misplaced Lovers” is an odd film, and at 123 minutes considerably overextends its welcome, significantly as a result of its episodic nature. On the identical time, it is vitally entertaining, additionally because of the intense exploitation parts, and the general audiovisual strategy, with the rock’n’roll soundtrack serving to essentially the most in that regard. As such, it positively deserves a watch, despite the fact that it appears to lie on a decrease degree than the remainder of the ATG titles. 



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