Sunday, February 12, 2006

School of the Holy Beast


I'm not sure School of the Holy Beast by Norifumi Suzuki holds together that well as a whole movie, but the virulence of the anti-Catholicism is a beautiful thing to see. It's all structured as overly obvious religious metaphor, showing the heirarchy of the church as increasingly hypocritical, reaching a crescendo in a scene in which the nuns beat a naked and very Christ-like Yumi Takigawa with roses.

Not to confuse, the intent of the studio was obviously to show topless women, illicit lesbian affairs and torture. Suzuki's recurrent theme of Catholic and authoritarian hypocrisy is merely his mechanism to get us from one of these events to the other. Oddly, it, with its refences to Nagasaki, church abuses and such, that part is more interesting than the exploitation aspect, in many ways.

Interestingly, it confuses The doctrine of the Immaculate Conception with the virgin birth, as most lay people do. This was distracting to me coming from people coming so high in the church, although I'm sure I'm the only person who could sit through this movie in its entirity for which that is true.


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