Ahhhh. Audition. Or Ôdishon for the pedantic.
Well, why is this film important to me? Well I guess the main reason is that it was my first film by Japanese super-director Takashi Miike. A crazy loon of a director, who operates in low-budget, high budget, High Concept, subtle drama, fantasy, horror, crime, etc. You get the idea. He makes at least 4 films a year, and yes the quality is variable. But a handful are classics. And I think this makes the list.
I don’t really want to spend these blogs going through an in-depth synopsis of what happens in the film. There are loads of review sites and blogs that can do that for you. But here is the Elevator Pitch:
“lonely widower is convinced to meet new young wife via audition process but miscasts horribly”
To be honest the first hour or so is a little heavy on the atmosphere and slight on pacing. A couple of shocks (what is in that bag? Exactly what you fear it might be. ) liven things up, but it is the final 30 minutes which make the film memorable. Yes, it is horrible. Yes, it is painful to watch. But tell me honestly that you have seen an American film descend into hell this way?
Is it a feminist empowerment fable? Or a Misogynistic exploration? I am not sure – I guess you take out of the movie what you want.
Funnily enough, this one has not got an American remake to sully its good name. Let’s all be happy for that.