Whispering Corridors - Female Ghosts of the Korean Cinema

Specifically chosen for the Halloween article, the most popular Korean horror film anthology to date is undoubtedly the "girls high school ghost" series, known in English as Whispering Corridors 1-5. Although they share a common theme and all-female casts, the films in this series are not linked to one and other in terms of a continuing storyline or recurring characters.

Above is the poster for the 1998 original featuring star Kim Gyu-ri, who plays an artistically gifted student who's welcomed to her senior year at Jookran Girls High School by the sight of a particularly mean teacher hanging in the schoolyard. This film is considered by many to have marked the beginning of when Korean horror films would finally take their place alongside their Japanese and Hong Kong-produced counterparts as some of the best of the genre to emerge from Asia. However, unlike their counterparts in other Asian countries, Korean horror filmmakers don't rely heavily on extreme splatter, tongue-n-cheek gags, and sophomoric titillation with casts made up of former or current porn queens. (Not that I'm knocking all of that ....just saying.)

(Note: All of the actresses mentioned in this article were at least 18 at the time they appeared in these movies.)

The Girls of Attack Girls Swim Team vs. The Undead

Carrying on in the spirit of the Halloween season, here are the ladies of another Japanese horror-comedy, the 2007 gorefest Attack Girls Swim Team vs. The Undead (aka The Girls Rebel Force of Competitive Swimmers and Undead Pool). The poster at left features star and former JAV idol (of course) Sasa Handa at center with the chainsaw, which is misleading because she wasn't the one who used a chain saw in this movie. Anyway, to the left of Sasa is her fellow JAV veteran and co-star Yuria Hidaka, who is also given plenty of room to shine (if not swim) in this movie.

In a nutshell (since this isn't a really review of the movie as it is a feature on the ladies who appear in it); an inoculation that's supposed to prevent a virus that's going around the school, turns those that get the shot into flesh-eating zombies. However, the members of the swim team aren't affected and it's later discovered that the chlorine in the pool seems to make them immune to the effects of the tainted vaccine. So, we have the swim team vs. the undead. If you have a collection of Japanese gore movies with gratuitous female nudity, this one is definitely worth adding to it. That is, if you don't already have it.

The Girls of the Horny House of Horror

The 2010 comedy-splatterfest Horny House of Horor is another low budget gem from Japan that's full of spurting blood, cheap titillation, and lowbrow humor. But what really makes this one a must-have, is that the entire female cast is composed of JAV alumnae. What more could you expect or want from director Jun Tsugita (Mutant Girls Squad), and splatter master Yoshihiro Nishimiru? The latter of whom was also responsible for most of the blood and gore in the films mentioned in this entry.

Gracing the film's poster at right, are (left to right) Mint Suzuki, Saori Hara (known as "Mai Nanami" in her pre-AV days), and Asami Sugiura (credited in the movie as just "Asami"). The ladies play a trio of castrating cuties employed at the Shogun Massage Parlor, a "fashion health" establishment, which is actually (as the Japanese title implies) a fashion hell establishment for the men who patronize it. Highly recommended if you like a lot of blood with your comedy and with your T&A.

Keryn Thompson

Primarily a behind-the-scenes person, illustrator and animator Keryn Thompson doesn't consider herself a model, but when she does get in front of the camera, she's like the type of girl who doesn't like to go to school, but still brings home straight A's. She pulls it off like a pro without aspiring to be one. Not one for the typical cheesecake poses, Karyn's expressions (such as the one at left from a photo shoot at Toms River, New Jersey) make me wonder what she was thinking at the moment the photo was taken.

Even though Keryn looks like she'd be very successful in the spotlight, she's doesn't have to push for that because she's been quite successful out of the spotlight. A couple of her more notable design credits include her works featured in the promo campaign for Stevie Nicks' Crystal Visions album and on Linkin Park's Minutes to Midnight special edition album.

When Keryn's not seducing the camera, drawing or creating animated videos that make you say "what the..?" you might catch her at a club tearing up the dance floor or cruising the babes at her local Walmart. Just a couple of things I learned during my recent, and very enjoyable, interview with her that follows. Above photo by Kevin Johnson of Simply Natural Photography.

Asian Bond Girls

If you're an avid fan of James Bond movies, then you know what the unofficial qualifications are to be dubbed a "Bond Girl." If you need a definition, I'll quote this one given by Robert Caplen, from his book Shaken & Stirred: The Feminism of James Bond:
A Bond girl is a character (or the actress portraying a character) who is a love interest of James Bond in a novel, film, or video game. Bond girls occasionally have names that are double entendres or puns, such as Pussy Galore, Plenty O'Toole, Xenia Onatopp, or Holly Goodhead, and are considered "ubiquitous symbol(s) of glamour and sophistication."
Bearing that in mind, we know that not every lady who has appeared in a Bond film meets the criteria for being a Bond Girl, and to date, there are only three Asian ladies who do. One being veteran Hong Kong action starlet, Michelle Yeoh (pictured above) who played "Wai Lin" in 1997's Tomorrow Never Dies. Most Bond aficionados would consider Michelle the most prominent Asian Bond Girl of all and Life magazine named Yeoh/Wai Lin the 11th best Bond Girl of all time. Whenever I see her as Wai Lin, the hauntingly erotic voice of Sheryl Crow singing the film's title song goes through my head. The best Bond film title song ever, in this writer's opinion. You'll here it after the jump.

Michelle Bella - Witness for the Prosecution

Stripper Exotic Dancer Michelle Bella met Michael Jackson's doctor, Conrad Murray, at her place of employment, the "social-type club" Speament Rhino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Miss Bella was called to testify during Dr. Murray's trial because she was one of the ladies in his harem whom he texted the day he left a drugged-up Jackson alone to die in bed. As I implied in yesterday's entry, I find nothing humorous about the case of a doctor so derelict in his duties, that it resulted in his patient's death, so I'm not making light of the trial. However, it has turned into quite a media spectacle with an intriguing cast of characters, Miss Bella being one of them, so I am going to place this one under "humor." Oh, yesss.

Dr. Thao Nguyen - Witness for the Prosecution

First of all, even though this entry may have a humorous tone, I'm not placing it under the "humor" category. After all, the reason UCLA Med Center cardiologist, Dr. Thao Nguyen was brought to the media spotlight, was because she testified at the trial of a doctor whose irresponsibility cause the death of his patient, who was one of the greatest entertainers ever. With that said; I'm not surprised that I'm not the first to have noticed the unique charms and fashion sense of Dr. Nguyen and yes, I'm going to say what I'm sure some of you will be thinking as you watch the above video: It does look like she got that jacket from Michael Jackson's closet.
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