Country / Year
Japan / 2013
Black Comedy / Horror
Kkobbi Kim, Takashi Sasano, Kumi Takiuchi
Nami is a young girl struggling to get attention from her mother and father.
Her mother, obsessed with raising money for poverty-stricken children overseas, abandons the family and leaves her father fall into depression. Under the control of a mysterious new mistress, Nami is left all alone, with her Lucky Shopping television network remaining her only friend.
Years later at age 20, Nami is living a carefree life thanks to a considerable windfall left to her by her deceased father.
She now spends her time secretly spying on what she calls ‘solitarians’, social outcasts and loners with a wide range of eccentric behaviour. Her new found obsession leads her to one particular old man, whose sad and lonely lifestyle meets Nami’s warped criteria.
However, the intervention of a group of Christian missionaries, determined to bring a happiness and companionship into the old man’s life, sparks a dark and violent series of events.
A twisted and violent tale, “Greatful Dead” is a film that refuses simple categorization.
In the warped tradition of Japan’s master of the unexpected Sion Sono 園子温, Eiji Uchida offers a heady mix of thematic preoccupations, from gender roles, religion, social conformity and mortality, to a biting comment on TV culture and consumerism.
The film has much in common with Sono’s magnum opus “Love Exposure” in terms of themes and approach, shifting from pitch black comedy to scenes of shocking and brutal violence.
“Greatful Dead” is a tour-de-force of film and signals the emergence of a bold and brave new voice in Japanese cinema.
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