4 Stars
Year Released: 2003
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 76 minutes
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Playing like a video coffee table book displaying some of the man’s most notorious work, “Arakimentari” introduces us to the life and work of famed Japanese photographer Nobuyoshi Araki who, for 40 years, has been blending art with pornography in his photographs that many regard as the most lucious erotic photos ever taken.

When we meet the 62-year-old Araki, he’s busy conducting a photo shoot with an aerobics instructor who, unbeknownst to her husband, has decided to pose for nude pictures taken by the legendary photographer. He jumps about his studio, grunting and laughing as he snaps his pictures, poking and prodding playfully at his subject and ultimately getting her to relax and open up to him due to his zany behavior that isn’t unlike that of a young, devilish boy. At first, some may think that Araki is just an immature pervert that has somehow charmed his way into this career that lets him ogle naked women on a regular basis and, according to Araki himself, sleep with almost every single one of them – an abuser of women and an all-around pig. But as the documentary unfolds and we learn more about Araki – listening to his philosophy as well as interview footage with Richard Kern, Bjork and fellow photographers – we find that in fact he holds women in higher regard than men. After all, every man has come out of a woman so, as he puts it – how can you beat that?

The film’s also jam packed with Araki’s work, set to the beat of an amazing DJ Krush soundtrack composed specifically for the documentary. After seeing these images you’ll be hard pressed to see the man as a hack with a hard on and a camera. Filmmaker Travis Klose does his best to showcase Araki, a man who he obviously admires, in the best light possible and he succeeds. Araki is a major talent and a truly unique character to be reckoned with.

Up Araki! May many more years of boobs and bondage lie ahead for you.

Posted on January 19, 2004 in Reviews by

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