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Who's Camus Anyway?
Who's Camus Anyway
Actors: Hirotaro Honda, Tomorowo Taguchi, Hinano Yoshikawa, Ai Maeda, Shuji Kashiwabara
Director: Mitsuo Yanagimachi
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
UR     2006     1hr 55min

The story is set on the campus of a university in Tokyo. Students from the literature department's "film workshop" are about to start shooting their movie "The Bored Murderer", part of their course curriculum. Everyone is ...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Hirotaro Honda, Tomorowo Taguchi, Hinano Yoshikawa, Ai Maeda, Shuji Kashiwabara
Director: Mitsuo Yanagimachi
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
Studio: Film Movement
Format: DVD - Color - Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 12/26/2006
Release Year: 2006
Run Time: 1hr 55min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 5
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: Japanese
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

Real Treat for Film Fans
Randy Buck | Brooklyn, NY USA | 08/12/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Writer-director Mitsuo Yanagimachi is news to me, but after seeing this glorious valentine to the movies, I'm going to dig up everything of his I can find. WHO'S CAMUS ANYWAY? is loaded with references to film (and other arts, as well) -- great fun to spot them as they fly by, thick and fast. Mann, Visconti, Welles, Altman, Godard -- every frame's dripping with love for these artists, plus many, many more. But Yanagimachi's not simply name-dropping here; there's a fascinating exploration of our old friends, illusion and reality, going on, too. And he does the best job I've ever seen of capturing that peculiar, insular atmosphere of an arts school, where the students are simultaneously aquiver with infinite possibilities and tremulously exploring their own personas. Fascinating, surprisingly moving, and strongly, strongly recommended; the sort of picture that rewards multiple viewings. (And try to spot the major blooper in the spelling of a subtitle; the person translating the script into English didn't know film as well as Mitsuo does!)"
One of the best Japanese films I've seen in awhile....
Miguel Douglas | Tacoma, Wa | 01/07/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Who's Camus, Anyway? follows the trials and tribulations of a group of Japanese university film students, more specifically, it follows the final five days of the shooting of their first film, which recounts the story of a high school student who killed an old lady just for fun. Each day leading to the film's conclusion is filled with tension and anxiety, ranging from long planning meetings to the character's daily lives. What makes Who's Camus, Anyway? a great experience though, is the great character development that is so prevalent throughout the film.

From the impressive opening sequence, to its stunning conclusion, Who's Camus, Anyway? is a great character study.The private life of the various protagonists interferes with the preparation of the film, and the professor who oversees their works (nicknamed Aschenbach after the character in Death in Venice) must also cope with his own personal problems. Each character on the film crew is given ample screen time, and by the end of the film, I felt like I was actually part of the film crew myself. The film is essentially a film with a film, giving us (the viewer) an inside look into how a student film is actually made, from the budget, the casting, to eventually the shooting process. This all takes a backseat though, and what are mostly displayed are the character interactions, and this is where the film really shines.

The director, Mitsuo Yanagimachi, shoots the film with a great eye for shot composition. Each shot is delicately taken with care and definitely gives the viewer a great perspective to the film's scenes. His choice of youthful actors was great as well; they each were able to play their parts convincingly and gave great performances.

The music throughout the film was great and was a pleasure to listen too. It reminded of music that would be played during a play or opera, and this film certainly played out like one. The music was able to display the emotional impact of certain scenes quite well, and in some cases, enhanced the scenes significantly.

My final say on this film is very short and consists of only three words; just see it. It's a magnificent film, with a great cast, music, and direction. It also raises questions such as "does art imitate life, or is it the opposite?", and with a stunning conclusion that will definitely have you speculating, how can you not appreciate this film? A totally engaging experience, I whole-heartedly recommend viewing this film, you will not be sorry."
A film lover's dream
David Negron | Tallahassee, FL | 12/31/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Absolutely a sheer delight to watch. Well produced, brilliantly directed, wonderful performances. Unique in the aspect that it's a film within a film, following Japanese film students as they try to film their take on the deep and confusing novel The Stranger by Albert Camus. As the production goes on, however, the students begin to encounter problems not only with the source material, but encounter issues with themselves.

The DVD:
Anamorphic widescreen, 1.85:1.
No extras about the movie, but a 10 minute animated Korean short film is included.

Definitely worth the purchase."
Film on a film
Daniel B. Clendenin | | 01/25/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)

"For their class project a group of students makes a film with the title "The Bored Murderer." When the male lead falls ill, that role falls to the very weird Takeda. At first this meets with enthusiastic approval, but when he plays his role a little too intensely they begin to wonder if he is sane or not. Before too long we realize that this film is not only about the student film and all its problems of story, budget, cast, sites, etc., but about their own lives and how their film roles and real lives merge. Goofing around with their hand held videos and camera phones they film each other making the film. Problems abound in their personal lives even more than with their film project. The girlfriend of the director Naoki is badly co-dependent and tried to commit suicide. Naoki sleeps around. Nakajo, a famous film professor, has quit working, is lonely for his deceased wife, and is obsessed with a gorgeous student. The assistant director Kiyoko breaks down in tears. In this film about film-making, life imitates art. Who's Camus Anyway? won the Best Film award at the 2005 Tokyo International Film Festival. In Japanese with English subtitles."