In WIFE TO BE SACRIFICED, Queen of Japanese erotica Naomi Tani stars as Akiko, a wife who charges her husband with sexual battery. But he escapes from the police and goes into hiding. As three years pass, Akiko divorces him and tries to put the pieces of her life back in order. Suddenly, he returns. Full of rage and hatred, he kidnaps her and takes her to a house in a remote wooded area. There he disciplines Akiko vehemently, subjecting her to increasingly shocking forms of sexual torture, tetherings and humiliations. Astonishingly, through the anger and lust, the pair develop a relationship that pushes the boundary of lurid passion and perverse obsession.
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I've said it before, I'll say it again - Good God, the Japanese are weird.
BDSM is often sexy, exciting. Yet this film left me concerned, not aroused. Perhaps because BDSM is cast as willing submission according to an agreed upon agenda and boundaries, that it is perceived as voluntary. Perhaps Akiko though initially a victim, "changed" under the shame and humiliation and embarrassment to become what she had despised. Something like the Stockholm syndrome where victims come closer to their captors. Maybe it has more to do with power and helplessness than sex or pleasure. In cultures where women are submissive and powerless, do they come to love their spouses? In gay relationships , are there similar powerful/powerless issues? I hope not. The film has left me with many unanswered questions. And the little girl, Miki. Is there something about childhood innocence that responds to power and abuse with an odd acceptance and even joy. Is this the source of parental anxiety, not that their child might do a "bad" thing, but that he/she might do it willingly out of curiosity or enjoyment? Then there was more than a little scatology through the film. Was anything left out? Perhaps too much was left in. There was no question about the actors, camera work, or the director: all excellent.