“Don’t forget the stench of blood that covered the earth!” former exploitation director Koji Wakamatsu (United Red Army) writes in his director’s statement for Caterpillar, screening this weekend in the Chicago International Film Festival. “Don’t forget the smell of burnt flesh! We must not forget…for this is what war is.”
Shinobu Terajima (Riding Alone for Thousands of Miles) won the best actress prize at the Berlin Film Festival for her performance in Caterpillar as a woman in 1940 Japan whose husband (Shima Onishi) returns from his bloodthirsty deployment in China a decorated, disfigured quadruple amputee with a ravenous sexual appetite.
Caterpillar is adapted from Edogawa Rampo’s short story, which was banned during the war for its potential impact on national morale. It screens Saturday 10/9 at 12:30 p.m. and Sunday 10/10 at 3:30 p.m. at River East 21, 322 E. Illinois St. $13; members $10.