“A true masterpiece if ever there was one,” says Quentin Tarantino as he’s pointing out Takashi Miike’s Audition. FilmMunch agrees!
Recently I mocked the Horror/Romance genre when reviewing Rec3. I would like to withdraw that mockery, because the genre has a leader, that is worthy of praise, Audition. Watching this film made me feel frightened and uneasy, in the best of ways. At the conclusion of the film, I couldn’t help but smile, but have a feeling of shock at the same time.
The story is madness. The story telling techniques are genius. In particular I recall one of the most shocking and at the same time frightening scenes I’ve ever witnessed. Mark Cousins, in his Story of Film documentary had ruined this moment for me, because he also praises this scene in one of the episodes. I knew it was coming, and even though I had this knowledge, it still came with such impactful force, that I jumped, literally! I won’t ruin it for you, because here at FilmMunch, we do not approve of spoilers, just trust that if you enjoy a good scary movie, this is the one to watch.
The actress Eihi Shiina gives her all in this role. There is a blankness to her method, making her high points more explosive! Subtleties to her approach give us a sense of uneasiness. A sense that something bad is going to happen.
To illustrate how intense and possibly disturbing this film is, when it was played in a number of Film Festivals, some people literally walked out, and in one instance someone even needed medical attention. What makes this film so wild is that we see a female that has gone rogue, but there is an enjoyment to her sadism, and this is what is truly frightening. How is is possible for anyone to find delight in cruelty!?
If ever I had a criticism for this film, it would be the pacing. The film is just shy of a 2 hour runtime, and the first half of the film takes a while to move and develop, but at the same time I understand now why the director chose this. He was building something up, a moment of shock and horror. So give the film time. If you’re a fright night enthusiast, this is for you!
TRIVIA COOKIE: Richard Gray, Australian bron director has taken on the project of remaking this film. I must admit that I am not necessarily excited by this, but I will try and remain optimistic. At the very least it will hopefully expose the original to people who haven’t heard about it yet.