Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Marebito (2004)


Written by Chiaki Konaka
Directed by Takashi Shimizu

Masouka...Shinya Tsukamoto
F...Tomomi Miyashita

Imagine, if you can, a world that exists beneath our world, comprised of impossibly long systems of manufactured tunnels, hallways and doors. Imagine that here in this underground city, the dead and the vagabond can inexplicably coexist. Everyone down there lives in fear of some unknown race known as DEROs (Detrimental Robots), which are literally taken from the pages of a Richard Shaver article.

If that's not strange enough for you, I need you to imagine that beyond the architectural corridors lies a grand world of mountains and valleys, and if you were to travel these mountains you would find a beautiful naked woman chained to the wall, with sharp teeth and no vocal ability. She seems, in fact, as if she's barely human.

Now...what if you took her home with you?

That's what freelance camera man Masouka decided to do when he went off of his meds and stumbled across this hidden world while chasing a news story. His intentions were honorable. He thought that he was rescuing her, fully prepared to teach how how to play human. But it turns out that she's too far from human to play the part.

What is she? It's hard to say. But one thing is for sure:

That bitch is hungry.

Combining elements of Reality TV, urban myths, folklore and the half-cocked Hollow Earth theory may seem like a strange concotion--and it is!--but it works far better than it has any right to. It's sometimes confusing (the dream-like logic used in many Japanese horror films rears its head here, of course), sometimes graphic, often times disturbing, and there's a definite sexual undertone flowing quite freely here that is upsetting on more than one level. There's little person-to-person dialogue--most of it is voice over narration by Masouka--but that just puts us further into his head. It's easy for us to believe because he believes.

I highly reccomend this film to any horror fan with a taste for the surreal. If you'd like to whip up a batch of Marebito yourself, here's a very simple recipe.

In a Japanese finger bowl, add one part What Dreams May Come, one part Man Bites Dog, and one part Little Shop of Horrors. Add one cup of water and three drops of Owsley's Best LSD. Mix well and drink cold.


Rated R
92 Minutes
Japanese (with English subtitles)

Marebito is currently ranked #40,953 in DVD's at Read more about it at the IMDB, rent it at Netflix, or buy it today!

"They didn't see something that terrified them. They saw something because they were terrified. "

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