Eh. You'd expect something different than what you get from a film about the Japanese porn industry titled Bastoni - The Stick Handlers.

Come on, The Stick Handlers? This should have been a Porky's-type film that, instead of a de facto softcore porn, was actually porn mixed with comedy.

Instead, we get a movie that is actually rather a sad story. It's the story of Natsuki (Yuka Kojima) a porn star who is retiring to give birth to her first child with husband Yamaguchi (Shunsuke Matsuoka). But the hilarity ensues when Yamaguchi's ex-girlfriend - who broke up with him when she found out he was a porn star - enters the industry to show him the evil of his ways.

But, really, how does one not know their boyfriend/girlfriend is a porn star? Do porn stars use double meaning phrases like, "Can you take DICK-tation?" in real life? What is your reaction when you find out your boyfriend/girlfriend is in porn? And why would one enter the porn industry to show someone who evil the porn industry is?

Alas, the movie doesn't answer those questions. Still, the characters are treated as real people - surprising for a comedy about porn - and the plot moves fast enough to keep your interest. If you don't mind English subtitles (the movie is in Japanese), it's a decent renter. Just don't expect a hilarious romp. There's some comedy, but the movie is, overall, depressing.


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