Love Exposure

Love Exposure ★★★★

Very silly, yet very dramatic. Reminds me of an Asano Inio manga, right down to all the absurdity, suffering, raunchiness, and obsessions with cults. But Sono is pretty darn competent with the cards he sets on the table of this 4 hour epic. He carefully modulates an environment of sheer wrongness, a nightmare to conservative morality, all of which strains the new "family". So the father is an adulterous priest, the mother wild and wanton, the son a deviant who is now in incestuous love with his soon to be sister, who also established a lesbian romance with her while in fraudulent crossdress. Very eyebrow raising indeed, to typical Japanese values or (what I think Sono uses as a hyperbole for insistence on traditionalism) popular Christianity. That scene near the end where this family sits in a completely white dining setting while also wearing white is the embodiment of forced values struggling to keep the facade of the family intact; white being what the father aspires towards when talking about keeping teeth, and everything, clean and holy. But of course the black clad Scorpion messes with that strenuous balance, with his obviously contrasting color palette, screaming, along with much of the film, "it's okay to be an imperfect pervert as long as you love". And the final punch is landed when Yoko eats with her relative's family, and they eat comfortably and naturally without the weight of expectations. I'm not a fan of that topsy-turvy finale, but with the aforementioned in mind and all the hilarity and heart, I'd say this is pretty damn good.