Between 1971 and 1988, Nikkatsu produce 850 erotic-themed “roman porno” productions. In the process, their filmmakers explored virtually every amorous concept that might tickle the libido of the young filmgoers these films were aimed at and crossbred sexploitation with different genres. They were also forced to up the ante as time went on to keep up with changing social mores and the rise of adult entertainment in Japan. The combination of all these factors led Nikkatsu’s directors of erotic fare to travel down some eccentric alleys in their pursuit of kinky, commercially exploitable thrills.
And eccentric is a mild adjective when you consider a film like Eros School: Feels So Good. For starters, the film’s protagonist is a rapist: Ryu (Murakuni Shohei) is a moody type who transfers into a new school because he was kicked out of his last one for his hobby of rape. Ryu discovers his new alma mater is full of nubile young ladies, most of whom worship school athletics champ Misa (Asami Ogawa). She is busy with preparation for a track meet when Ryu announces his intention to take her virginity by force.
That’s just the beginning of the perversion, bad taste and sheer weirdness on display in this film. For example, Ryu wanders around the school with his pet pig and the school’s female teachers are played by men in deliberately unconvincing drag. There also two nerdy virgin male characters who vacillate between wanting to defend Misa and admiring Ryu’s rapist skills (the leader of the duo is also a frustrated foot fetishist). Even if you get used to the aforementioned elements, nothing can prepare you for how the film’s showdown finale piles on the taboo-busting until the viewer is left slackjawed… and said buffet of offensiveness is followed with a wacked-out happy ending coda followed by a perverse comic relief chaser.
In other words, Eros School: Feels So Good is not for all tastes. The average moviegoer will be shocked, infuriated or both by the way the film plays rape for cheap laughs and titillation (all of Ryu’s victims ultimately succumb to his advances with great passion). However, if you can hang in with the film’s confrontational bad taste you’ll quickly realize that it is not designed to be taken seriously. It’s a bizarre lark where the bad taste is gleeful and operatically odd, kind of like a Japanese sexploitation version of a John Waters film.
It’s also worth noting that Eros School: Feels So Good is well-made in the typical Nikkatsu style. The production values are strong, the Cinemascope photography is composed with skill and the female cast is uniformly attractive. On the acting note, it should be mentioned that Shohei and Ogawa play their roles straight and deliver compelling performances that keep the film from drifting off into its own excesses. Director Koretsugu Kurahara maintains a tight pace, keeping the film down to a rapidly-paced 67 minutes, and the film is topped off with a weird yet catchy keyboard driven score from Sansaku Okuzawa that blends rollicking piano melodies with burbling, droning synthesizers.
In summation, Eros School: Feels So Good is too freaky for anyone besides the most adventurous subset of the cult cinema fanbase – but those brave enough to answer to its call will be rewarded with a skillfully made film that harbors an endless capacity for shocking those viewers in the most perversely inspired ways imaginable.