Hold Me

Director: Itsumichi Isomura

Reviewed by Paghat the Ratgirl

Hold MeHaving been told that Close Your Eyes & Hold Me (1998) was the Japanese The Crying Game (1992), I was more than a little disappointed that it's actually "roman-poruno" or romantic porn without much in the way of a story to tell, but only a series of gender-bending sexual fantasy scenarios.

A guy meets a beautiful girl & falls in love, not caring that she's transsexual. Nor would you care all that much if the girl making this claim was adult video & international pin-up girl Kumiko Takeda. Amane (Kazuya Takahashi) breaks up with his previous girlfriend Juri (Natsue Yoshimura), who in desperation confronts Hanabusa, only to be excellently seduced by her.

It's minor, twisted erotica with a serious tone & a touch of sweetness rather than vulgarity. But the gender-bender theme is completely phony since unlike in The Crying Game the transgendered character is just your basic action-adult-sexploitation starlet whose best-known role would have to be the much tackier girls-with-guns exploitation film Zero Woman III: Assassin Lovers (1996), a role she didn't even originate.

Close Your Eyes & Hold Me is in the main just campy-silly when Hanabusa claims to have a penis (which would have to be an invisible penis since no one bothered to trump up even a special effect to make the notion convincing).

Plus the film didn't want a complete X rating, therefore much is implied but little is actually shown; generic humping passes for hot sex & it's what they're saying they're doing, not what is shown, that is unusual. Without a narrative drive the redundant phony sex made the film seem interminable. But to me two out of three of the main characters weren't very sexy to start with, & even Kumiko Takedo who is sexy by profession simply isn't talented enough to make her pretense of being intergendered plausibly acted.

Though it bored me, one good thing I can say about it is that it makes the fantasy of a threesome with three sexes seem like a fairly ordinary event rather than merely freakish, & twisted sex a playful thing rather than a dirty thing, which I'm guessing makes it better than the a-ver-age bare nekkid sexflick.

copyright by Paghat the Ratgirl

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