True Story of a Woman in Jail: Continues DVD Review
Written and Directed by Koyu Ohara
1975, Region 1 (NTSC), 70 minutes, Not Rated
DVD released on July 10th, 2012
Impulse Pictures released True Story of a Woman in Jail: Sex Hell back in April and followed with True Story of a Woman in Jail: Continues in July. Both films are part of the series of Japanese classic erotic/sexploitation movies that the company is bringing back to life.
True Story of a Woman in Jail: Continues is supposed to be a sequel and Mayumi (Hitomi Kozue) is once again the lead character. However, the back story provided in the first film is thrown out the window and the plot seems to start from scratch. When the film begins, Mayumi is being released into the general population after spending some time in solitary confinement. When she enters Cellblock 3, the situation is very much like what she faced the first time around: a group of bullies are hazing and abusing their new cellmates. When she tries to defend the new girls, a fight breaks out. From then on, the narrative alternates between Mayumi and the stories of two other girls: a young shoplifter and a post-op transsexual.
Mayumi's story has absolutely nothing to do with what we learned about her in the first movie, so True Story of a Woman in Jail: Continues is more of a remake than a sequel. As for the other two stories, they act more as occasional breaks in the fighting and nudity than as serious plot elements. Besides the difference in the main character's background, there are plenty of things that make this film feel like a remake. The fights, communal baths, abusive guards and hazing are just the beginning. Just like the first time around, there is a beating that leads to a miscarriage, fake penises made with food, bloodied underwear, and a beating in the yard, to name a few.
While the original film pushed some boundaries, this one is a copy and its attempts at being shocking eventually become laughable. They had a lot of urinating in the first movie, so this time they did it in a few mouths. There were a couple of raping scenes in the original, so they replaced those with gang rapes to make it worse. A lot of lesbian sex could be seen in the previous film, so this time it's lesbian group sex. There's more, but I'm sure you already know where I'm going with this.
Ultimately, True Story of a Woman in Jail: Continues is more sexually graphic, violent, and gory than its predecessor, but it lacks the originality and depth of the first film. Exploitation is a lot of fun, but it loses something when it becomes obvious the film makers are trying too hard to shock and titillate.
Video and Audio:
The audio is decent and the images are, just like the first time around, very clear for a film from 1975. However, the fact that they tried to make it more hardcore means that the awful grey mist of Japanese censorship ruins three scenes with its presence.
The only offered feature is removable English subtitles and liner notes from Japanese film scholar Jasper Sharp.
Want to comment on this review? You can leave one below or head over to the HorrorTalk Review Forum.