Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Danger After Dark Collection |
Suicide Club/ Moon Child/ 2LDK
Actor: Maho Nonami; Daisuke Kizaki; Eiko Koike; Hideto Takarai; Gackt Camui; Lee-Hom Wang; Taro Yamamoto; Susumu Terajima; Zeny Kwok; Seiji Chihara; Kôji Chihara; Yosh; James H. Thomas; Anne Suzuki; Ryo Ishibashi; Etsushi Toyokawa; You Kurosaki; Kanata Hongô;
Director: Yukihiko Tsutsumi; Takahisa Zeze; Sion Sono
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Drama, Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Tla Releasing Release Date: 06/27/2006 Run time: 288 minutes Rating: Nr
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Not so much "Danger After Dark", but still good.
Allie B. | Suburbia, Pennsylvania | 08/12/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I'll review in the order I watched the movies. I didn't get the boxed set first. I brought Moon Child here after a recommendation. Let me first say that I love Gackt and Hyde. Their music makes me happy and I think both are beautiful. That was the biggest draw for me: two of my favorite Jrockers in a movie about gangsters and vampires. However, when I watch it, I forget about the stars and focus on the story and characters.
There are a few layers to each of them. Kei is a vampire, yes, but he doesn't act much like one. If you need a Western parallel, think Louis of Anne Rice's The Vampire Chronicles. He's tortured by his curse and it hinders many aspects of his life. Sho starts as your typical gangster and continues much in that vein. However, little things change him as the movie continues. I won't say much else in case I spoil this for anyone. Toshi and Shinji are very much the comic relief for most of the film, but they have their dramatic moments as well. Son is pretty no-nonsense, though he has a lighter side. You'll get what I mean. Yi-Che is very quiet and reserved, hardly ever speaking unless she absolutely must and sees no other option. I'm sure someone would bring up a little spoiler here, but I'm referring more to after that.
The story is on of friends, family, bonds, love (not the sort I'm sure you're thinking!), and time's effects on them all. I saw a thread on another site about the homo-erotic undertones in this. Well, there are none unless you want them to be there.
All in all, I personally enjoyed Moon Child. I suggest this if you enjoy Jrock/Jpop, can tolerate vampirism, like some comedy and a dash of action with your drama, and don't mind your fights scenes big, loud, and a bit over-the-top.
After picking up the box set, I watched decided to watch 2LDK. I'd read up on it a bit and determined that it would be better for my freshly filled stomach. Crazy movie, that one. The sort that makes you not dream of being a movie star, because I could definitely see it happening. Not to this extreme, however, but the tension is real enough.
This follows an evening in the lives of two actresses, Lana and Nozomi. They've just auditioned for the "heavy lead" role in a film, Yakuza Wives. Both of the are the prime candidates for this role. Both of them need said role to get ahead. They would do anything for the part. Anything.
Lana and Nozomi are at opposite ends of the spectrum. Lana has everything she could ever want, could get any man she could ever want. Still something is... off about her. You'll see just what that is. Nozomi is a girl from a small island simply living out her dreams. Both are portrayed in a perfectly believable way.
As I said, this follows two actresses housed in a 2LDK (two-bedroom, living room, dining room, kitchen) by their agency. For about one-third to half of the movie, we hear their thoughts as well as the polite conversation. Talk about a study of human nature. For the rest of the movie, we see what happens when the two finally snap and go all out for this part.
Overall, I really enjoyed this movie. As a matter of fact, it's my favorite in the set. The cinematography is pleasing to the eye and tells the story just as well as the script. The acting is the best in the set and some of the best I've seen period. It is a bit over-the-top but that, I suppose, only drives the message home all the more: don't always trust what you see. There is always more hidden beneath the surface.
Finally, there's Suicide Circle. This is a movie you simply won't get unless you know at least a little something about most, if not all, aspects of Japanese culture. Though I am by no means an experts and some things were lost in translation for me, I have to say this was an entrancing movie. It is, for lack of a better phrase, a murder mystery. Suicides have been occurring en masse and the police are forced to find a way to stop it. But how do you stop people from killing themselves? This is a definite race for the viewer to discover the killer before the main characters do. There are many twists and turns along the way, along with a false lead. But don't worry, all will be revealed in the end.
This one was a bit gory for my tastes and so things made me want to run straight for the bathroom. Still, the intrigue kept me glued until the end. If you're faint of heart or week of stomach, I suggest waiting to eat. All in all, I still liked it. Not much to say about the actors; they were good. And I can't elaborate on the story with spoiling. There were things I didn't like, but I could deal with it. If you don't mind the gore, starting with 53 schoolgirls jumping in front of any and oncoming train, or deceiving cute-ness, I suggest this.
On the whole, I'd buy this again if I had to make the choice. The feeling of "danger after dark" really isn't there, at least not in the way I expected it to be, and Moon Child doesn't really connect with the set, theme-wise, the way 2LDK and Suicide Club do. However, if you like at least two movies in the, I'd spring for the set. Not perfect, but still a good buy."
Atomic Tofu | In my heart | 07/24/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I'm rating this as an overall "bang for your buck" type of thing.
I'll start with Suicide Club.
The movie has got a lot going for it. Great suspense, buildup and twist. It does a good job of bringing a lot of tension in the viewer trying to figure out on their own what is happening, but to me takes a turn into nonsense because of who they are saying is causing these acts. I don't like to spoil for anyone so my words are well-crafted I think. The movie is good up to the point of this ingredient, it then becomes silly. Had they taken a different route it would have been thoroughly enjoyable, but as it is, only about 65% so.
It's not bad. I think the movie tries to ride on these popstars Hyde and Gackt more than the story itself. Eventhough I like jpop, I know very little of these 2 guys. Take a look at my pic...I think I'm "cuter", lol. So, that said. The story is interesting and has a lot to go for it. It deals with difficult choices individuals have to make and rides on "good and bad" or yin and yang fairly well. Keep that in mind, yin and yang. It's more that than the black and white good and evil. A little bit too low budget. I think if it was kicked up a notch it would have been much better.
Last, I rate 2ldk.
Out of the 3 I believe this is the best. Of the 2 stars, I recognize Eiko Koike. I'm one of those that picks up on details. I recognized her from her voice alone...so after this if you haven't yet, go watch Kamikaze Girls. She has a small role in that.
Eventhough the basis of this story is the most outrageous, vampires and suicide clubs aside, it's all about the premise. It's not "urban legend/myth" like Suicide club and it's not sci fi vampire stuff ike Moon child, but it's more tangible...plausible.
2 roomates, that not only have to live together, but do so with the fact they are complete oppposites...and if that wasn't enough, they have to compete for something that is very dear to them. A dream to become an actor. Throughout it all, you witness them acting within their own world, facades and all. It's quite interesting and very intense.
Buy the pack, you won't be disappointed."
Note on Suicide Club
The Fiddler | New Orleans | 01/10/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Of the three movies only 2 are in Anamorphic widescreen as the box and DVD's say. Suicide Club is 4/3 letterboxed widescreen and will not display properly on the widescreen TV without zooming which cuts off parts of the subtitles When printed on the box,in big letters, it says "new anamorphic widesceen transfer" one would expect it to be correct! Wouldn't one?
Addition: TLAreleasing emailed me today, and stated that there was a problem with the disk and has been corrected. Unfortuntantly the new ones are bad too. It wasn't fixed.
Action Grab Bag: 2 goodies and the prize at the bottom
Jacob Lawrence | Seattle, WA : USA | 08/19/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
-2LDK was my second favorite of the collection. It's comic, twisted, and entertaining. The only drawback was that its runtime is about an hour... which is alright, a quick film, but it left me wanting more. You get to know the characters, with a little back-story that unfolds, and though it is kept to what is "necessary" to the story, there is a lot more that they could have covered, easily pushing the length... but it's a good one to plug in and just enjoy. The characters, while being completely psychotic, are both lovable and repulsing in aspects. There is also a nice cautionary message to it, so with 2LDK, you're in for a treat.
--This one is the prize at the bottom. Personally, I didn't really like it; I sat through it, and doubt I will again unless it is with friends and we're only half paying attention... Compared to the other films in this set, this is very long; twice the length of 2LDK and it drags... very much. Perhaps, the time that they could have spent expanding 2LDK cosmically transferred itself here, cutting one short and the other much too long. Easily, the story could have been condensed, but we love looking at our pop idols! So I guess that's okay. The story was interesting, but there wasn't too much played on the vampire thing, it was much more of a "family epic" style film about a group of friends... Also, don't let the commercials fool you, there isn't too much action in this one, and I'm pretty sure they used all the scenes in the advertisement... so when I say this is like a family epic, I mean: talking, dialogue, chatter, and a few exciting scenes in-between. I don't mean to say this is a bad movie, just slow, but there is still quite a bit to think about in it, and I think if you take the time to watch it, not necessarily enjoy it, but watch it, you'll take something from it.
---And for the one everyone has been waiting for, and probably the main motivation for buying the set. Unfortunately this does not come with any extras, because there doesn't seem to be a Region 1 releasing with extras... or any that I've found... but that doesn't subtract from an excellent film! Suicide Club is one of my all time favorite movies, and it tries to do a lot, which is where some of the criticism comes in... The movie is scattered, patchy, but on a second watch, evens the first, things come together, and they do make sense. The movie asks a lot of question, mostly on society that is not specific to just Japanese culture, but capitalism in general... A LOT to think about. Also, if you do like this, there is a sequel, and in time, there is an expected third installment. Yes, this movie has a considerable amount of gore and violence, but don't let that distract you from the very, very brilliant thing that Sion Sono is trying to do!
----So this is a great investment if you're interested in all three films, and even if you're just interested in two, you'll find the third to be a nice bonus. All of the films are quite different from one another, attempting to examine three different aspects, but interest in one may lead to disappointment in the other two... The price is right, though, and it's a pretty good deal for an adventurous film goer, and it doesn't look bad as an addition to your movie shelf. Personally, I'd say it's a great collection, and definitely worth the buy!"