I remember seeing The H-ManThe H-Man on television one late evening in early adolescence; it was a silly specimen of an already cheesy 1950s genre, the “made in Japan” sci-fi/horror film . . . But a DVD explosion has caused The H-Man to mutate into a beautiful and genuinely harrowing new form:
Stripped of its halos, alibis, and consequences, sex would constitute a cruel, if pleasurable, formalism whose sole principle is sex for sex’s sake. And with the closing of the circle, the final surprising, yet not unexpected, match of high and low, such urgent but empty and gratuitous sex seems a universal fate.
The first time—in 1958, during the original release — was not happy. Though the vertigo shot made my head spin deliciously, it furnished my only thrill; the otherwise impenetrable yarn, by turns too slow-moving for my interest or too fast-paced for my understanding, had to be repeatedly explained to me by my mother afterward