Let’s Make the Teacher Have a Miscarriage ClubJuly 2, 2012
Little devils in an effective exploitation drama
Sensei wo ryûzan saseru-kai (2011)
Let’s Make the Teacher Have a Miscarriage Club was just another piece of new j-trash until it had its world premiere at the 2011 Nippon Connection. Rumors of a small, but mean film that exceeds the expectations started to circulate. More than a year later the attention seeking film is finally released domestically – hopefully to be followed by a wide festival tour.
The mini budget psycho drama, somewhat based on true story, follows a bunch of adorable high school girls whose casual pastime includes throwing small animals in the air – and not catching them on the way down. The leader of the sweethearts is Mizuki (Kaori Kobayashi), who loses whatever traces of sense she might have possessed when her teacher turns up knocked up (getting pregnant = having sex = yuk!). The girls form a “miscarriage club” to kill the unborn baby in order to show the insolent adult who calls the shots.
Silly, but unexpectedly effective, Miscarriage Club serves its shocks with rather straight face. The game is clear from the start: the dead rabbit of the opening scene is followed by the girls walking the countryside with instrumental rock score setting the tone. Director Naito, despite his pretty words on serious themes, comes out more of a rock star than moralist. His little devils steal the screen – and all the better for it.
While the film is dark enough to borderline the horror genre, it never dives into the splatter pool. The mean-factor is based on repulsive theme, intense audio-visual delivery, and cheap dramatic tricks that make the viewer’s blood boil. Slight relief is provided in form of pitch black (and seemingly intentional) humor, served in small doses. These moments ought to earn a few laughs among foreign audiences – in Japan viewers would hesitate to even smile at such un-understated jokes.
The general clumsiness of the drama is part of the pack – by no means does Miscarriage Club come out less a genre movie than, say, The Class of 1984. What counts here is the audio-visual drive and good pace in serving money shots. Naito succeeds for the most part: editing resembles a movie, visual outlook is above your typical low budget J-filth, and the heavy soundtrack is the biggest strength.
Let’s Make the Teacher Have a Miscarriage Club won’t make a coherent youth drama or social commentary, but there no need for it. At just 60 minutes the film makes an effective exploitation drama. Though, director Naito himself insists his film is about dealing with important themes and what is important in life. So be it – though his methods are the same as Sylvester Stallone’s in Rambo. Intentional or not, Japanese school girl cinema’s got its balls back!