Saturday, October 13, 2012

Demon Hunting (2007)

Demon Hunting is a Japanese film, dubbed in English and shot on video, so we're off to a great start. See if you can makes sense of this one, because I certainly couldn't. Some chick is on a roof and in voice over tells us, "I'm depressed with the world these days." She then litters from the rooftop. Then she washes blood down a bathroom sink before returning to the roof. There she looks vacant, and tells us in more voice over, "The future is so far away." Then she's at the school gym, holding a basketball.  In voice over she says, "I hope this thing goes in." She takes a shot, but misses.  She and some other stupid girl talk about the end of the world and how cool it would be. This thing is so poorly dubbed that for a little while I'm convinced the whole thing is intended to be expressed through telepathy. The girls' mouths aren't moving, but inane dialogue keeps coming.

The other girl says, "I noticed your rival didn't come to school today... If she doesn't come to school, she can't flatter the teacher, can she?"  It's an intriguing question, or it would be if I had any idea whom she was talking about.  Apparently the girl likes some boy, but another girl likes him too. So the main girl goes to the bathroom and says, "Mirror mirror on the wall, who's the fairest lady in the world?" Doesn't quite have the same appeal as the original line, but whatever. Besides, there are no fair asian women. Asian women are all dark-haired.  Well, she then finds a dead girl in one of the stalls.

Some awkward boy in a lab coat tells the main girl that life has its ups and downs. He gives her a cassette and tells her, "Just smile, okay?"  Then there is some nonsense about a chain letter, "The demon is coming." If you don't pass it along, you die (a slight variation on every other lame contemporary Japanese horror film).  The main girl is being interviewed by some guy, and that's how this information comes out.  Maybe something is lost in the translation, but every single line of dialogue in this film is incredibly stupid.  Also, all the girls wear the same school uniform, so it's nearly impossible to tell them apart (if that sounds racist, tough).  Are we in a flashback? Is that the dead girl? I have no idea.

The main girl tells the interviewer that her heart is broken. He says, "I'm very sorry. It's only shortly after the incident." He promises to pursue whoever is behind the chain letter.  Some other guy, while looking at his phone, says, "Here's the demon's chain letter." And that's that. I don't think we ever see him again, but I can't be sure.  The girl is on another roof. Or is this the same shot from the beginning? Oh, she's on the roof, but thinking about another time she was on the roof.  Then suddenly a group of people look up at her and tell her she's the demon.  They keep saying, "The demon."  They say it like thirty or perhaps forty times. It goes on and on. She blocks her ears and in voice over says, "I still pretend to believe in various things."  And that's the end of that scene. Then she's on a bus.

By the way, whoever made the DVD forgot to provide translations of any words we see on the screen, like the film's title and the various messages on cell phones.

Anyway, she goes home and her mom attacks her, but we only see it after the fact, when she tells a cop what happened. She grabs the cop's gun and aims it at him for some reason, then runs away. I think this film proves that asian people are completely insane.  A news report in voice over says that phones and the internet are not working, then says the police are investigating the email message. How could they?  Apparently, there was another murder at the high school, this one in a pool on a roof. A pool on the roof of a high school? That doesn't sound dangerous, or just plain stupid. Not at all.

The girl starts talking to the mirror again and cutting herself. I pour myself another glass of wine. Randomly the interviewer asks some person if he remembers "New York's 9/11." The guy answers yes, so the interviewer follows up with, "What can you say about that?"  Well, I could say that it's completely irrelevant.  The interviewer is a professor that all the girls like, apparently.  Certainly not for his intelligent, probing questions.

Well, the cop finds the girl, and chases her through the school's halls, saying they can be friends. Some other girl takes a Polaroid photo of her, then says she got an email from the demon.  A cell phone magically appears in her hand. She then talks about... Well, I can't follow it.  The main girl shoots the camera girl in the shoulder.  Camera girl says, "You did reveal your true personality" and then runs off. That's just what I would say if someone shot me.  The main girl then finds the interviewer/professor and tells him she shot the girl and then asks, "Am I a demon already?"

Some chick tries to call Bruce Willis, but remembers the phones don't work, so she starts laughing because broken things are funny.  They run outside and see a car pass, so they yell to it for some reason. It doesn't stop. Why would it? The mayor shows up at the school, but the cop sends him away. The girl decides the cop must be a demon. You can tell a demon from a person because all demons have just eaten cherry popsicles, and prove it by sticking out their tongues.

A giant red CG moon hangs like two feet above the building. Maybe near the pool.

For some reason, they don't leave the school, and the interviewer/professor is on the phone. So maybe the phones work now. The mayor on television sticks out his tongue, and the interviewer/professor becomes angry and says, "There goes my exclusive news." Then he talks about a voodoo child. Time for another glass of wine.

Meanwhile the other girl is trying to remember the name of a John Travolta movie. Finally she remembers; it's Mad City. Glad we got that cleared up. This makes me think the United States should drop another atomic bomb to stop the Japanese from making more films. 

Things get even more retarded when the girl goes back to the gym and there's some other guy there dancing with a knife and talking about song lyrics. Then she has to play basketball. The guy wins and shouts, "Yes." And the word "Yes" actually flashes across the screen. In English. She lost the game, but then shoots the guy. So is anyone a winner? The other girls says this is just like The Truman Show.  Interesting. I hadn't made that connection, but then again I'm not a Japanese girl.

The interviewer/professor thinks about policemen, and the main girl thinks about the interviewer/professor. In voice over she says, "I just wanted the professor to hold me. But how can I think of such a thing at this awful time? Maybe that's the reason why I am called the demon."  Sure, why not?  She then tosses away the professor's stone from New York and kisses him. The big red moon is still in the exact spot it was hours ago.  Odd. Then the girl watches the tape in the guy's video camera, and learns that the interviewer/professor is the killer since he conveniently filmed everything, including (somehow) himself walking away from the scene of the crime.  The moon is big and in the same spot, but now it's white.

She runs from the interviewer/professor/demon. But he catches her and asks her if she's afraid.  Another great question from this brilliant freelance journalist.  She runs to the roof and then says, "Of all places on Earth, why did I come here?"  Exactly, especially when she could have taken that staircase to Cairo or Paris or Toronto.  The interviewer/professor follows her to the roof and says he did kill the girl in the bathroom but is not a demon.  The girls says, "But that's wrong, you know?" And he replies, "But it's not wrong, okay?"

He then says, "It's the end of the line for you because you have to die. Is there something wrong, my dear?" Then he suggests they kiss again. And she shoots him. Then it turns out another girl has been filming this, but it's not like the movie Biohazard (I have to take her word on that, as I haven't seen that film).

We see the opening bit again on the roof with that awful voice over.  And then it's all explained, sort of. A contract, an erased memory, some blood on a mirror, and ninety minutes of my life wasted.

By the way, there is only one minute of music recorded for the film, but it's played throughout the ninety minutes, which really adds to the pleasure of watching this horrid pile of feces.

One more thing: the photo on the DVD box has absolutely nothing to do with the film (in case you were wondering).

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