The Pornographer (Jinrui gaku nyumon)
An exact translation of this film's title would be The Pornographer - An Introduction to Anthropology, suggestive perhaps of Imamura's incomparable wit, "perceptive appreciation of the 'perverse' and... brilliant satire on the history of the psyche in Japan."
- Joan Mellen, "The Waves At Genji's Door--Japan Through Its Cinema."
It is the bizarre story, shot almost entirely on location, of an Osaka man who makes pornographic films out of a sense of duty to his fellow man. The scenes of him making films are according to critic/historian Donald Richie "some of the funniest sequences ever to appear in a Japanese film." Throughout, the film is a technical tour de force - the camera constantly takes on the role of voyeur, peeking through windows and even through fish tanks.
As the story progresses, the pornographer moves on to procuring and finally the manufacturing of the perfect sexual mate - a life-sized latex doll with real hair. While working on his houseboat home, the mooring line slips loose and he sails, unknowingly, out into the Pacific Ocean, in a scene of mysterious beauty, reminiscent of Fellini's Amarcord.