Written by: Michael Den Boer on April 24th, 2008
Theatrical Release Date: Japan, 1971
Japanese Title: Mesubachi no gyakushu
Approximate running time: 87 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Widescreen
Director: Norifumi Suzuki
Writers: Takayuki Minagawa, Norifumi Suzuki
Cinematograper: Noboru Huruya
Composer: Osami Furuya
Cast: Reiko Ike, Miki Sugimoto, Yukie Kagawa, Shinsuke Taki, Hiroshi Miyauchi, Toru Abe, Shigeru Amachi
Synopsis: Reiko is the leader of the girl gang Athens. They are a group of free spirit stray cats who don’t like answering to anyone. Reiko and her gang end up crossing the wrong people putting them in great danger. Reiko only further complicates things when she turns down the Akimoto Yakuza group’s offer to join their organization.
Girl Boss Blues – Queen Bee’s Counterattack is the first of film in a series of seven films. Director Norifumi Suzuki would direct the four “Girl Boss” films starting with Girl Boss Blues – Queen Bee’s Counterattack, Girl Boss Blues: Queen Bee’s Challenge, Girl Boss Guerilla and he would depart the series after its fourth entry Girl Boss Revenge: Sukeban. The star of five ”Girl Boss” films Reiko Ike would frequently star in several films directed by Norifumi Suzuki including her debut Hot Springs Mimizu Geisha.
The plot for Girl Boss Blues: Queen Bee’s Counterattack contains all the elements which make these Pinky Violence films so enjoyable. The main story revolves around a girl gang named Athens and their leader Reiko. Two subplots that play predominantly in the film are a dirt bike racer who falls in love with Reiko and a Yakuza named Jiro who also develops feelings for Reiko which put his loyalty with Akimoto group in jeopardy. The story also features an older Yakuza member in Girl Boss Blues: Queen Bee’s Counterattack who wants to have a normal life after five years in prison. His struggle to leave his life old life behind him gives the film some added depth especially when he finds out he has a daughter he never knew about.
Visually director Norifumi Suzuki fills the screen creates a solid first entry into the “Girl Boss” series that perfectly lays the foundation for the films that follow. Some of the films stand out moments include, Reiko being dragged behind a speeding boat as punishment and a scene where a former member of Athens who is now a pop star is blackmailed and raped. One scene that lingers long after is it is over is a disturbing scene where a young woman name Yuko who has just joined just joined Athens is takes her own virginity. The most memorable moment in the film occurs when Jiro’s dike biker friends have sex with Reiko and the Athens girls while riding their dirt bikes. This wouldn’t be a Pinky Violence film without a few cat fights or knifings. Most of the violence occurs during the last half of the film including a carnage filled ending which ends tragically.
Reiko Ike and Miki Sugimoto would frequently be cast together in many films. Girl Boss Blues: Queen Bee’s Counterattack is definitely Reiko Ike’s film since Miki Sugimoto is character is only a secondary role. Despite her limited role Miki Sugimoto has one of the films most titillating moments. Her character is caught stealing and when she is confronted in a office she then proceeds to strip all of her clothes off. This is another solid performance from Reiko Ike who looks amazing throughout. The film features an unusual score that incorporates a whistle in the main theme.
Ultimately Girl Boss Blues – Queen Bee’s Counterattack while not the strongest entry in the series still how just the right amount of T&A and violence to stratify the most diehard Pinky Violence fans.