Dec 18, 2021

Top Stripper (1982)


(Original Title: (本)噂のストリッパー) The story of a seedy back-alley strip club where Gloria works and Yoichi obsesses about her. Writer-Director Yoshimitsu Morita really accentuates the imagery of poverty and the desperation of the poor, without getting too bogged down in misery.

Gloria (Kaori Okamoto) and her big sister Lady (Nami Misaki) are strippers and prostitutes.

As part of her act, Gloria lets Yoichi (Ken Miyawaki) rub cream on her boobs.

Yoichi becomes obsessed with Gloria, hanging out by the vending machines to catch glimpses of her.

Backstage, it's general merriment - eating, smoking, and betting on cycle races.

The strip club

Yoichi pays the bouncer in cigarettes to give him the name of the stripper who let him put cream on her tits.  Her name is Gloria.

Gloria meets up with Shoichi (Jun Ueno) who works part-time at the strip club.

Gloria lives with her sister, Lady, and her husband Seiko who is also the manager of the strip club.

Gloria follows her racing bets then goes to bed.

Lady and her man have sex.

It always amazes me that Japanese films can show this, but dare not show pubic hair.

Yoichi leaves flowers and a note for Gloria.

Gloria does her thing.

After masturbating onstage, she lays back in exhaustion. 

Yoichi pledges his devotion to her, but Gloria won't even acknowledge him.

Shoichi pays for sex with Gloria in a dirty restroom.

Gloria literally washes off the condom and keeps it for reuse.

Lady has sex onstage behind a sheer curtain.

More backstage merriment. 

Yoichi makes money fixing electronics.  He fixes a stereo for this customer, Yoshiko (Ayako Ota).

Yoshiko is lonely.

Lady and Gloria go out on the town prostituting themselves.

They go to a disco.

The crowd makes a circle around the star performer at the discotheque.

In the bathroom, Gloria idolizes her and wants to do what she does one day.

Back home, Lady is getting pounded as per usual.

After sex, Lady informs Seiko that she's pregnant.  He doesn't want to keep the baby because it could easily not be his.

Gloria pours them some beer.

Gloria requests to be able to do live sex acts on stage like Lady.  It would earn her more money, which would go toward her dream of being like that disco performer.  They reluctantly agree.

Lady takes Gloria shopping so she'll be properly costumed for her new role at the strip club.

Soichi runs into Yoichi at the adult magazine shop.  He let's him know he's moved onward and upwards in life.

Seiko tells Lady that he'd actually like to keep the baby; he wants to be a father.

Yoichi has sex with Yoshiko again, but he's still obsessed with Gloria.

Yoichi pays to be on stage with Gloria who is now doing live sex acts.

But once again, she doesn't even acknowledge him after sex.

Yoichi moves on, joining the bustle of the city and perhaps leaving his Gloria infatuation behind.


Yoshimitsu Morita really captures the poverty, the "no rest for the wicked" of the Japanese underclass.  But unlike most films of this nature, it doesn't wallow in despair; this is the only life these people know, and so they don't walk around weeping all the time.  Plentiful nudity, but it doesn't always feel gratuitous; a sleazy yet rather quiet slice of life film.  


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