Delinquent Girl Boss: Worthless to Confess (1972)

Genres - Action  |   Countries - Japan   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Despite the fact that it is one a series of Japanese exploitation films, Delinquent Girl Boss: Worthless To Confess quickly reveals itself to be a different kind of animal. Indeed, this film is likely to shock b-movie fans looking for their trash fix because it greatly downplays the sexy angles of its material and keeps the action minimized until the finale. However, the material that replaces these elements is worth its wait in gold because Delinquent Girl Boss: Worthless To Confess uses its exploitation movie archetype -- a con getting out of jail and trying to go straight -- as the pretext to create a stylish Japanese variation of the female-driven dramas Hollywood produced back in its golden era. The international collision not only works well but has surprising dramatic heft, thanks to strong performances by its cast: Reiko Oshida is both compelling and charming as the gang's leader and Yumiko Katayama is convincingly intense as the rebellious gang member who secretly longs to be at peace. Best of all, director Kazuhiko Yamaguchi directs with great flair, framing the material with widescreen panache and playing the melodramatic material in a sincere, understated style that makes it surprisingly affecting. In short, Delinquent Girl Boss: Worthless To Confess is a delightfully atypical example of its genre that has appeal outside the usual fanbase for Japanese exploitation and is worth a look to any cult film fan with a love for stylish melodrama.