Friday, August 03, 2012

Koji Wakamatsu's 1969 film, 'Go, Go, Second Time Virgin (Yuke yuke nidome na shojo)' reveals stark picture of 1960s' nihilism

 'Go, Go, Second Time Virgin (Yuke yuke nidome no shojo)'was screened at Osian's Cine Fan film festival at Siri Fort 4 on August 2, 2012

It is interesting how different films are made in different countries. Certainly, 1969 was different in India and in Japan. It was revealing then that even as India's parallel cinema was exploring in a gentle manner a different kind of Indian landscape, some of the intelligent and sensitive Japanese filmmakers were making a different kind of radical cinema, radical in terms of film aesthetics of sex, violence and despair, and through it making a comment on Japanese society's deep psychological fissures.
Koji Wakamatsu, known for his political films, explores in 'Go, Go, Second Time Virgin (Yuke yuke nidome no shojo)', the extremity of despair through rape, violence and suicide. And he shows these three aspects in a stark manner, in unflinching images. There is no titillation here. What stares us in the face is the scene of young people, lost and completely cut off from the rest of society, stranded alone on the rooftop, and indulging in senseless animal drive, which leaves all of them unhappy and empty.
Wakamatsu lets the tragic drama play out in  single building, and mostly on the rooftop. This is not a realist film. It goes beyond realism, and Wakamatsu through an arbitrary narrative structure is trying to get at the despair at the heart of not just Japanese society but of human existence itself. Of course, it would be impossible to live with these unrelenting images. But in his 65-minute film, Wakamatsu gives us a glimpse of the human inferno, not in some dark tenement or basement, but in the clear daylight of a rooftop where the ruthless world looks on indifferently at human predicament.

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