Visitor Q (2001)
Director Takashi Miike
Cast Kenichi Endo, Shuniku Uchida, Shoko Nakahara,
Kazushi Watanabe, Fujiko, Jun Muto.
A title card reads Have you ever done it with your dad? Boom! We see a father having sex with his prostitute daughter. Another title card follows that reads have you ever beat your mom? Boom! Sure enough, back home the son beats the mother due to his frequent bullying. The mother also prostitutes herself so she can feed her drug habit. Into this comes a stranger. He hits daddy over the head with a rock as a way of introducing himself. He invites himself into their home and starts a chain reaction that will bring this fucked up family back together again and act like a typical loving family, of sorts.
It’s happened to us all at some point in our filmic odyssey. You know the deal? When we would read a film review or article that catalogues all the gory or sexy or bloody or just plain rude bits and then maintains that you’ll never see it uncut in this country. You could see the stills; you could see the posters we just couldn’t see the damn films. Well, with the advent of DVD, coupled with the Internet this is no longer a curse for us Brits to bear. One film that would definitely have fallen under the scenario just described is Takashi Miike’s fucking ferocious Visitor Q.
It’s a textbook of sordid sexual shenanigans and vile violence that is guaranteed to have your jaw on the floor and your eyes out of their sockets. Strangely though this doesn’t play like a pure exploitation film with shock tactics its whole reason for being. It takes us on a journey with a totally dysfunctional and repressed family and shows, that with the right guidance, things can be fixed. Sort of
Takashi Miikke’s decision to shoot on digital video may have been a budgetary one but it definitely adds to the unease that the film generates. It looks too damn real. The jerky camerawork adds to this “home video” look. This film is chock full of taboo busting imagery even one incident would have been enough to gain this movie some notoriety. To give an example would just be lazy journalism and would definitely ruin the impact when you watch it for the first time. The questioning title cards that appear throughout add an interactiveness that causes unease and the way the Miike frames scenes i.e. through doorways etc turns the audience into unwilling voyeurs. It is these stylistic devices that cause most of the strong reactions when the movie was shown world-wide, not the actual content (which, like I said before, is pretty strong stuff). Miike makes us observers and thus we are left to make up our own minds and come to our own conclusions.
Not for everyone’s taste that’s for sure but for you folk out there looking for something that will shake you up and get those under worked brain cells active and as a perfect antidote to the Hollywood horseshit parade, it is an essential viewing experience.
This was one of the titles that made people stand up and take notice of Miike but also led (wrongly) to the conclusion that Miike was a director of shockingly violent and taboo busting movies. It’s this small mindedness and quick to pigeonhole laziness that pisses me off. Miike loves to make movies and he doesn’t make the same one over and over again. He is a director for hire, if the material offered to him has possibilities he will take it on and run with it. Hell, he doesn’t even know what the outcome will be (the ending of Dead or Alive for example), and that’s why his films are so fresh and vibrant. The man is a mutha-fucking genius and one day all film makers will make movies like Takashi Miike.
HUMBLE PIE ALERT!
You can now purchase this DVD in you local HMV or Virgin Megastore. Buy it!!!!
Review By Martainn Russell.
© Owned Martainn Russell 11/12/2004 16:30.