Sion Sono | Japan 2016, 76 minutes | 7pm, Sunday 16 July
Anti-Porno seems like a phantasmatic take on Perfect Blue, made with a striking inventiveness and many possible interpretations, on the genre as much as on cinema or feminine sexuality. – Yocelin Acevedo, Indiewire
In a candy-coloured apartment resides Kyoko, artist, actress and manic boss of Noriko, her ever-obedient assistant. As Kyoko works on her latest film, her mania comes to a boil as she deals with obsequious sycophants, cruel producers, and the artfulness of Noriko whose machinations and counter-machinations send Antiporno spiralling into a psychosexual abyss. Informed by Almodovar, Bergman and Fassbinder in its heightened depiction of power dynamics, Sion Sono’s film is both a giddy piece of pop art and the closest Sono has come to a feminist statement.
In the Seventies, iconic Japanese distributor Nikkatsu launched its infamous Roman Porno series. The distributor gave its directors carte blanche as long as the films met a required number of sex scenes. While many of the Roman Porno films were forgettable and mediocre, the mandate freed directors to produce several perverse and kinky works, many of which engaged with unusual sexual politics. In 2016, Nikkastu relaunched the series with the surprisingly light Wet Woman in the Wind and Sion Sono’s Antiporno, a gleeful deconstruction of the series. Antiporno’s colourful delirium and tart commentary is only made more powerful by the film’s multilayered approach to reality.
D Sion Sono S Sion Sono P Naoko Komuro, Sion Sono, Shin’ichi Takahashi C Maki Ito E Jun’ichi Itô
Language: Japanese with English Subtitles
Distribution: Nikkatsu DCP
Unrated 18 +