In two weeks, I will be on a plane flying to Tokyo for my dream vacation. I have been dying to go there ever since I saw Enter the Void– my all-time favorite movie. But when I think of Japan and horror movies, Audition is always the first one to pop into my mind. Audition was one of the first Japanese horror films to create a major cult following here in the U.S., along with Ringu, Ichi the Killer, and Ju-On.
Audition is a slow-burn horror thriller that starts out leisurely and then suddenly smacks you in the face. It’s about a single father with a teenage son who talks his father into dating again. The father, Aoyama, takes an unusual approach to finding the perfect woman. He wants a special woman who is not brash and loud like the girls nowadays. He wants a quiet, smart, and talented woman (how Japanese of him). With his connections as a movie producer, he holds a casting audition to choose his ideal woman. It may be a little amoral but he is a good man at heart. The final girl arrives at the casting call. Asami seems so frail and innocent, classy and obedient, demure with her head bowed. Perfect. But love is blind and Aoyama is missing the warning signs when he falls in love with beautiful and mysterious Asami.
The film really takes a 180 with some David Lynch-ian hallucinatory imagery as Asami’s past is revealed. Without giving anything away, I can say it is highly disturbing. The slap to the face comes in the form of torture galore with systematically measured excruciating pain. Without a doubt, Audition has the best murder weapon in movie history. I’ve heard some rumors that Audition is being remade into an American film. I have mixed feeling about this but it could be great since this version is a little dated. As I stated before, it starts out slow but pleaseee keep watching. The payoff is so worth it.
Kiri! Kiri! Kiri! Kiri!
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