Two Japanese men help a Vietnam war deserter escape from Japan for Sweden. They plan to fund the escape by selling LSD pills. After word of the drug deal gets spread around they find themselves fending off rival gangs.
Tough girl biker Ako (pop singer Akiko Wada) comes across Mei (Meiko Kaji) and her girl gang (the Alleycats/Stray Cats) as they are about to have a knife fight in Shinjuku, Tokyo with another gang of girls. When the second gang calls in their boyfriends for help, Ako joins in and turns the tide for Mei and her gang and becomes a leader figure for the girls. Meanwhile, Mei's boyfriend Michio (Koji Wada) wants to join some right-wing nationalists, the Seiyu Group. To prove himself, he induces an old friend Kelly (Ken Sanders) to throw a boxing match so the Seiyu Group can cash in betting against him. But when the boxer, encouraged by Ako and Mei, wins the fight, the Seiyu Group takes their anger out on Michio until Mei and the Alleycats rescue him. But Mei and the girls are now on the run from the powerful group. Mei is eventually killed and Ako leaves Shinjuku, roaring away on her bike.Written by
The first of the Stray Cat Rock films is not as good as its first two follow-ups, Wild Jumbo and Sex Hunter, but it's a solid girl gang flick. Meiko Kaji stars as the leader of the Stray Cats, as she will tend to do, but Akiko Wada probably has more screen presence in this one as the new girl on the scene, a motorcycle chick who is generally assumed to be a dude until she takes off her helmet (one particular extra has a great double take as she walks out of the women's bathroom). When Kaji's boyfriend (Koji Wada) double-crosses the yakuza, it's up to the Stray Cats to save him - which means now they have also double-crossed the yakuza. Tatsuya Fuji plays one of the main gangsters. There are plenty of cool musical performances and lots of great views of a swinging 1970 Tokyo. The film is shot almost entirely with hand-held cameras, which puts you right in the action. The film mostly takes place at night and indoors, so the film is a bit darker than the two follow-ups. It also moves a tad more slowly. Still very much worth seeing, though.
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