Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on September 2010


With Japan’s AV industry cranking out approximately 20,000 new titles a year, the topic of women getting roped into the porn racket is ripe for investigation. Namae no nai Onnatachi, based on the bestselling memoir of the same name by Atsuhiko Nakamura, depicts how one young woman got involved in the industry. It’s a film you want to like but, sadly, the script and the direction are not up to the task. Junko (Norie Yasui) is an under-confident, miserable OL with an abusive mother, who gets recruited into the AV world by a scout on the streets of Shibuya. Petrified at first, she creates an anime-style alter ego to be her sexy onscreen persona. The first half of the film lacks character development, then it totally spirals out of control in the second half, with each scene more overblown than the last. Enlivened by neither realism nor drama, this pic is simply a missed opportunity to explore an important issue. English title: Love & Loathing & Lulu & Ayano. (105 min)