Mari Sakurai is a beautiful Japanese actress who graces this blog today. During this 85 minute film we will now look at, she seems to be doing passionate love scenes for about 30 of those minutes. 2009's "Lust in Hell" is a strange tale that seems to connect carnal passion with the netherworld in what proves to be an alluring experience. Either nude, or wrapped in an ornate kimono, Miss Sakurai dominates the camera, even when horrific ghosts appear.
Let's begin: A year after an awful accident on a highway overpass (..which killed her dad), Koto (Sakurai) escapes from a psyche ward, clad in a colorful kimono and wooden sandals. Her most vivid memory of her dad was when he told her ghost stories when she was a child (...but were they mere stories?). Koto ventures to the sight of the accident, which she survived but her dad was killed. Also at the overpass is Shinji (Ryo Ishii). Shinji was in the other car, survived, but his girlfriend died. Koto is there to mourn, but Shinji is there to commit suicide. Koto stops him by telling him he will go to Hell if he ends it all. The two recognize each other from the hospital and go back to his place, where she tries to seduce him. Shinji is an asassin for a Japanese crime lord who has not worked since the accident. On their first night together, Shinji is horrified to see his girlfriend's ghost (see photo below), though Koto is not. Koto can exploit a rift between Hell and life and bring the dead back....but as what?
There are several really steamy sex scenes in this film, including one between Koto and Anko (the boss' girlfriend). The ending is heartfelt, and tender. Koto will have to reach into the rift to save her new beau. There is a lot in "Lust in Hell" which is easy to miss, so watch closely, even between the love scenes. Available, with it's sequel, on Netflix....enjoy and treat yourself to a cold shower, afterwards.