Starring the iconic and beautiful Meiko Kaji (Lady Snowblood, Stray Cat Rock) in a role that came to define her career, the four-film Female Prisoner Scorpion series charts the vengeance of Nami Matsushima, who assumes the mantle of "Scorpion", becoming an avatar of retribution and survival, and an unlikely symbol of female resistance in a male-dominated world.
Female Prisoner #701: Scorpion introduces Nami, a gullible young woman unjustly imprisoned, who must find a way to escape in order to exact revenge upon the man who betrayed her. The visually avant-garde Female Prisoner Scorpion: Jailhouse 41 sees director Shunya Ito and star Meiko Kaji re-unite as Nami and six other female convicts escape prison once more. The Gothic horror-inspired Beast Stable finds Nami branded public enemy #1 and on the run. She soon finds refuge with a sympathetic prostitute, but runs afoul of a local gang. The final film in the series, #701's Grudge Song (from director Yasuharu Hasebe, Retaliation, Massacre Gun), shows a gentler side of Nami as she falls in with Kudo, an ex-radical suffering from physical and psychological trauma caused by police torture.
Spiritual kin to Ms. 45, Coffy and The Bride Wore Black, the Female Prisoner Scorpion series is the pinnacle of early 1970s exploitation cinema from Japanese grindhouse studio Toei, and one of the greatest female revenge sagas ever told.
"Terrific films, splendid extras and a strong presentation from Arrow. Highly recommended."
- Cine Outsider
"One to go through and indulge for a lifetime... One of the most appealing sets of the year."
"one of the year's most essential releases."
Limited Edition Blu-ray collection (4000 copies) Brand new 2K restorations of all four films in the series presented on High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD Original mono audio (uncompressed PCM on the Blu-rays) for all films Optional English subtitles for all films Double-sided fold out poster of two original artworks Reversible sleeves for all films featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Ian MacEwan Booklet featuring new writing on the film by critic Chuck Stephens, a brand new interview with Toru Shinohara, creator of the original Scorpion manga and an archive interview with Meiko Kaji by Chris D. illustrated with original stills
FEMALE PRISONER #701: SCORPION
Newly filmed appreciation by filmmaker Gareth Evans (The Raid) Shunya Ito: Birth of an Outlaw, an archive interview with the director Scorpion Old and New, a new interview with assistant director Yutaka Kohira Theatrical Trailers for all films in the series
FEMALE PRISONER SCORPION: JAILHOUSE 41
Newly filmed appreciation by critic Kier-La Janisse Japanese cinema critic Jasper Sharp looks over the career of Shunya Ito Designing Scorpion, a new interview with production designer Tadayuki Kuwana Original Theatrical Trailer
FEMALE PRISONER SCORPION: BEAST STABLE
Newly filmed appreciation by critic Kat Ellinger Shunya Ito: Directing Meiko Kaji, an archive interview with the director Unchained Melody, a new visual essay by Tom Mes on the career of Meiko Kaji Original Theatrical Trailer
FEMALE PRISONER SCORPION: #701’s GRUDGE SONG
Newly filmed appreciation by filmmaker Kazuyoshi Kumakiri (Kichiku: Banquet of the Beasts) Yasuharu Hasebe: Finishing the Series, an archive interview with the director Japanese cinema critic Jasper Sharp looks over the career of Yasuharu Hasebe They Call Her Scorpion, a new visual essay by Tom Mes on the film series Original Theatrical Trailer