Top Ten Ero Guro Films: Although several skilled directors have created films within the realm of the Erotic Grotesque none of have reached the purist level of the great Teruo Ishii. In fact his works so perfectly embody the surreal aesthetics and freakish eroticism of the movement that I had no choice but to grant all 10 spots on this “best of” list to this singular & profound director. From adaptations of Rampo to disfigured rapists, S&M dwarfs, depraved nuns, grand guignol and visions of hell, Ishii’s films are a must see for all connoisseurs of the beautiful and bizarre…
1) Horrors of Malformed Men:
This is one of my favourite films of all time. It’s an insane amalgamation of several Edogawa Rampo tales strung together as a beautifully grotesque hallucination, just watch it.
2) Inferno of Torture:
Tragic tales of impending torture, incest, insane nuns, terrifying tattoos & ultimate execution.
3) Joys of Torture:
More breathtaking imagery including stories of jealousy, bestiality and nude bullfighting as well as an emergency cesarean section initiated under somewhat sordid circumstances…
4) Hell’s Tattooers:
Another beauty in the Tokugawa Torture series, complete with a sadistic brothel, chastity belt torture, eye gaugings and psychedelic tattoos…
5) Bohaichi Clan of the Forgotten Eight:
A Yakuza-Chanbara type movie but one that runs rampant with ero guro ideas including perpetual torture techniques, nude female ninja, bath houses, opium smoking and a cage full of women with syphilis. Based on a manga by Kazuo Koike this is by far the greatest Samurai adventure I have ever seen, I’ve watched this over 50 times.
6) Blind Woman’s Curse:
This one is actually a fairly tame (and sometimes silly) yakuza-chanbara film but features ero-guro theatre master Tatsumi Hijikata and a strange circus of horrors that will give エログロfans plenty of spectacular visuals to feast upon even if the overall story isn’t that messed up.
7) Blind Beast Vs Killer Dwarf:
Pure nastiness. A vile low budget adaptaion of two fantastically horrific eru-guro stories by Edogawa Rampo. This one is so terribly disgusting that I absolutely love it. Note: Genius filmaker Shinya Tsukamoto shows up here in the coveted role of Akechi Kogoro which makes this evil bit of trash even more amazing.
8) Female Yakuza Tale:
This movie is rather bonkers mixing ridiculous humour, sleazy sex, funky music, naked sword play and yakuza ethics to create a delightfully surreal adventure into poor taste. Although it is essentially a comedic & exploitative revenge flick, Ishii never fails to provide the psychedelic, bizarre and beautifully erotic violence that make him the king of ero-guro film.
9) Love & Crime:
Drawing upon several true stories of erotic crimes Ishii offers up yet another strange series of エログロexperiences including an adaptation of the infamous Sada Abe as well as a few other viscious snip-snips.
Jigoku has some bat-shit-crazy-cheese special effects that depict hell as a psychedelic cartoon gone wrong. The colours, latex, gore and imaginative torture scenes perfectly capture the surrealism of a great ero-guro painting even though this is primarily a moral retribution film that doesn’t have a lot of erotic elements.