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The Spider on My Back: Irezumi (1966)

A large, grotesque tarantula stretches its long, demonic legs over Otsuya (portrayed by Wakao Ayako)'s back embracing her in a deadly vice grip. This tattoo was not voluntary. She had no choice in the matter. Her voice, her cries of pain meant nothing to Seikichi (portrayed by Yamamoto Gaku). Her perfect skin is the only canvas for his swansong. This is only the beginning of this brash, nihilist, and cruel melodrama.
Mizoguchi Kenji's legacy in the realm of Japanese film cannot be overstated. He was not only a cinematic mainstay that delivered decades of socially driven melodramas, but also worked with a few future icons - Shindo Kanedo and Masumura Yasuzo. Masumura was the a second unit director on the last few Mizoguchi films. Shindo was an art director and screenwriter. Following Mizoguchi's untimely death in 1956, Shindo and Masumura both cemented themselves firmly as distinct voices in the film industry. 
Even though this isn't a Post-War film like Women of the …

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