Directed by: Yukio Noda Year of Release: 1974 Running Time: 88 min
This legendary "violent pinky" film from Japan is a good place to start for viewers wishing to brave the lurid waters of Japanese explotation. The Japanese authorities enlist the help of a imprisoned renegade female police officer (armed with the titular red handcuffs) to save the daughter of a high ranking government official who is being held for ransom by a demented (aren't they all?) gang of murderous rapists. What sets Zero Woman (and quite a few other J-exploitation films) apart from the standard exploration pic is how genuinely well crafted and artfully shot it is. Like a seedy manga (which this is actually based on) sprung to life, ZW is a real blast; full of sleazy thrills and deliriously violent even by today's standards, this pic is a guilty pleasure of massive proportions. They don't make 'em like this anymore!
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