MIFF 2014: Why Don’t You Play in Hell? (2013)

Director: Shion Sono


Movies about making a movie are so cliché now that you may as well make them out as joke from the start, which is what this film does and is not even trying to hide the fact that the entire film is a meta joke in the infinite mirror sense. It is also quite a savage backhander to the type of film makers who talk more than they make movies with the Fuck Bombers being all talk and so little action that ten years pass and they still have not made a movie despite filming every day.

The Yakuza in the movie are the standard stock characters with Muto (Jun Kunimura) in his tacky threads, Michiko (Fumi Nikaidô) his wild daughter and the rival Yakuza leader Ikegami (Shin’ichi Tsutsumi). The look on Ikegami’s face when he finally gets to meet Michiko after obsessing about her all those years is priceless.

I am being a bit light on with the plot as that is half the fun with the movie as you don’t know what it is going to do next. There is a point in the film where they decide to drop any suspension of disbelief and heads and limbs start flying and the film crew suddenly has machine guns that they use to gun down the Yakuza while filming the dolly shots.

Michiko is a terror and the broken glass kiss is one of the more intense things in the movie. I had to watch that part of the film through my fingers.

Deranged carnage has been one description of this movie, well yes, but it knows why it is doing it and it has a lot of heart. It is not like Tokyo Gore Police that was all gore and no plot, you are actually engaged with these characters and want to see how it turns out.

If you are a fan of Yakuza action movies or appreciate films that question the medium I would recommend this film. Some people may wonder what the hell is going on and are probably best to watch something else that is more straight forward.

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