Filmmakers who worked on Nikkatsu’s “Roman Porno” line dur­ing the ‘70s and ‘80s were noth­ing if not exper­i­men­tal. As long as they deliv­ered the con­tin­u­ous stream of nudi­ty and sex expect­ed by their boss­es and the audi­ence, they could do what­ev­er they pleased with the actu­al sto­ry­line. Thus, the­se films often con­tain some of the strangest sto­ries ever mar­ket­ed to film­go­ers as sex­ploita­tion fare, often incor­po­rat­ing wild and total­ly unpre­dictable shifts in mood.

Story Of White Coat: Indecent Acts is an exam­ple of those kinds of wild tonal shifts from late in the Roman Porno cycle. The hero­ine is a young nurse (Mina Asami) who just wants to be the best she can at her pro­fes­sion. She’s nat­u­ral­ly shy and timid, two qual­i­ties that make her espe­cial­ly desir­able for the per­vert­ed rich son of a hos­pi­tal share­hold­er, who sets his sights on hav­ing her whether she wants it or not.

The rich kid’s body­guard, who secret­ly has roman­tic feel­ings for the nurse, watch­es impo­tent­ly from the side­li­nes as his boss schemes until he can final­ly cor­ner the nurse. He takes her by force — and what fol­lows next is tru­ly unpre­dictable. Let’s just say that the encoun­ter awak­ens strange new atti­tudes about sex in the pre­vi­ous­ly docile nurse and the body­guard steps up from the side­li­nes to play a vital role in what fol­lows.

Story Of White Coat: Indecent Acts is a real roller­coast­er ride from a tonal per­spec­tive. It starts as a raunchy com­e­dy, com­plete with a scene where the rich son gets his hands on the wrong nurse and ends up with the crabs. However, the main pro­tag­o­nist is writ­ten dif­fer­ent­ly from the oth­er char­ac­ters, por­trayed like the earnest hero­ine of a melo­dra­ma who mis­tak­en­ly stum­bled into a sex com­e­dy.

Asami plays that hero­ine role straight, giv­ing a seri­ous per­for­mance no mat­ter how wacky the plot­ting gets. She’s quite good: in fact, the help­less ter­ror she express­es when being assault­ed by the rich son makes those sce­nes hard to watch. When the sto­ry shifts into a stranger, more dra­mat­ic direc­tion for its final reel, her per­for­mance takes on a weird­ly trag­ic grandeur that makes this nar­ra­tive shift com­pelling.

Director Hidehiro Ito can do lit­tle with the crazed sto­ry­line oth­er than give it snap­py pac­ing and a decent look so he con­tents him­self with that. He pret­ty much leaves the actors to their own devices (aside from Asami, the men over­play and the wom­en vamp it up) but he’s pret­ty inspired when it comes to chore­o­graph­ing the sex sce­nes for the cam­era. In fact, two of the big set­pieces are cap­tured in a sin­gle take with a mobile cam­era shift­ing through sev­er­al angles to cap­ture some com­plex action, includ­ing dia­logue from the actors! Like his lead­ing lady, Ito nev­er miss­es a beat no mat­ter what the sto­ry throws at him — and he brings the whole thing in at a stun­ning­ly quick 55 min­utes.

Like much Roman Porno fare, Story Of White Coat: Indecent Acts is for spe­cial­ized tastes. Its indel­i­cate, judge­ment-free treat­ment of rape as a plot point will offend sen­si­tive view­ers and its crazed mix­ture of tones will leave those not fas­ci­nat­ed by Japanese pink cin­e­ma scratch­ing their heads. However, if you can roll with its per­vert­ed sense of ambi­tion, Story Of White Coat: Indecent Acts is anoth­er one-of-a-kind sex­ploita­tion blitz from Nikkatsu. They don’t make smut like this any­more (and they’d prob­a­bly be arrest­ed if they tried).

DVD Notes: this title has made its debut on U.S. DVD cour­tesy of a new disc from Impulse Pictures. It boasts a new anamor­phic trans­fer that is as crisp and col­or­ful as the oth­er titles in this series. The Japanese mono sound­track is nice and clear, bol­stered by a fresh set of English sub­ti­tles. In terms of extras, there is a wild trail­er on the disc and a set of lin­er notes by Jasper Sharp includ­ed as a book­let in the disc case.