Written by: Michael Den Boer on January 13th, 2008
Theatrical Release Date: Japan, 1974
Director: Tatsumi Kumashiro
Cast: Junko Miyashita, Meika Seri, Nahomi Oka, Aoi Nakajima, Keizo Kanie, Yoshinori Furukawa, Akira Takahashi, Moeko Ezawa, Hideaki Esumi, Gô Awazu, Taiji Tonoyama, Kunio Shimizu, Hiroshi Gojo, Ai Yoshino
DVD released: 2004
Approximate running time: 80 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Letterboxed Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono Japanese
DVD Release: Pagan
Region Coding: Region 0 PAL (UK)
Retail Price: $24.95
Synopsis: 1950’s Tokyo on the day before a new law banning prostitution goes into affect five women at a local brothel reminisce about their past sexual experiences.
Street of Joy had all the ingredients to make that one would expect while watching a Pink film. The plot lends itself to the genre perfectly with five women retelling their tales of sexual misadventures. Each women and their tale are fascinating and well done with the sexual moments not as graphic as they could have been and at times some of these scenes felt to brief. Street of Joy was directed by Tatsumi Kumashiro who also directed these classic Pinku Eigu films The World of Geisha and The Woman with Red Hair. Visually director Tatsumi Kumashiro comes up with several titillating shots that cover up all the naughty bits.
The plot which is essentially five separate down beat tales and some humor is injected through out to lighten up the overall mood of the film. The films beautiful cinematography was shot by cinematographer Sinsaku Himeda who also worked on these films Never Give Up and Vengeance Is Mine. From top to bottom all the performances are superb. The film’s final scene is one of the most depressing I have ever seen in any Pinku Eigu film. Ultimately Street of Joy despite not being as sadistic or sexually charged as most pink films it still packs a powerful emotional punch which hits its mark dead on.
Street of Joy is presented in a non anamorphic letterbox widescreen and the image looks very close to the film’s original aspect ratio. Having never seen this film via nay other versions I can’t say if it is cropped the framing just feels a tad too tight at times. The image is clean and there is no print damage. Overall the image is not on par with Pagan’s Immortal Love release.
This release comes with one audio a Dolby Digital mono mix in Japanese and English subtitles have been included. The audio is free of any defects. Dialog is clear and music sounds evenly balanced with the rest of the mix. Extras are nothing substantial as they are limited to mostly text pieces.
Pagan’s release for Street of Joy is a flawed yet watchable release that will have to do until someone gives this film the first class treatment it deserves.