Friday, February 10, 2006

Japanese Horror-Comedy...Gozu

Pooteewheet and I watched Audition last year based on the fact that it made the A&E top 10 list of scariest movies of all time. It was scary, in the sense that seeing a nice Japanese woman go freaky psychotic with a razor wire on a guy who's something of a letch is scary. And then you realize she has another limbless guy in a bag, so this isn't her first time dismembering someone, and you worry about her issues with the place of women in Japanese society.

The director of Audition also directed a movie called Gozu that we watched over the last two days. As twisted as Audition was, it made infinitely more sense than Gozu. Gozu is a David Lynchesque experience that attempts to one up Mr. Lynch in character weirdness. To summarize: newish Yakuza (gangster) is asked by the Yakuza boss to take older Yakuza who has gone batshit bonkers (he suspects small toy dogs of being yakuza hunters and goes crazy on one) out into the countryside to off him. There's a river in the way where there should be a road, and older Ford Mustangs do not come equipped with passenger-side airbags. Older Yakuza is conveniently killed, which you would think would be fortuitous and the end of the movie. Not so...the body still has to be disposed of, but only after a bit of food at the local cafe. The chicken curd topped with quail egg and possibly some human excretions is a real stomach turner, and an occasion for someone to steal the body from the Mustang while the younger Yakuza is puking. This is not Yakuza body disposal in the strict sense of the phrase, and must be remedied, unfortunately for the younger Yakuza by interacting with the locals, who are all sure he's not from them parts.

Who does he interact with? The half white, half red, baseball-head Nose (No-che), who has a skin condition on his white side. Note: the wife laughs at my joke that he's hapa, but evinces a certain amount of shocked "your sister would kick your ass" attitude. Rightly so. Who else? A hotel owner and her brother, the former who fills milk bottles with breast milk for a living because she lactates constantly, and the latter who can channel spirits, but actually can't - although his sister beats him up for not being able to channel because if he can't, he's not giving the hotel guests who expect it good service. What about minotaur white briefs boy who drools semen or milk - it's hard to say which - and who lives in the room immediately upstairs in the hotel. It may be his drool leaking into the younger yakuza's room, or it may be lactation from the hotel matron who's breast feeding someone or something up there. And why, oh why, is there a picture of a squid either eating or humping someone...that's something undoubtedly only PZ Myers could explain. Did I mention two-tone Nose? I did? What about his boss at the junkyard who plays some sort of riddle game with the younger yakuza, threatening to take away something "important" if he gets it wrong (present for getting it right is just helping him find the older yakuza's body). Pooteewheet and I yelled out suggestions for what he should tell him was important at this point: my jacket, my specs, this stuff, Nose! Fortunately it didn't matter because he answered correctly, and the answer is "time", not "a ring in your pocket."

Whew...break...ok, back to the characters. The elder yakuza...often called "brother"...he comes back as pressed skin per the two guys the younger yakuza meets at the restaurant. They seem crazy, constantly swapping stories that are, almost verbatim, "It was hot. I wore a t-shirt. That's how hot it was. How hot? That hot. So hot you wore a t-shirt? So hot I wore a t-shirt. It was hot. It was hot. It was hot. It was t-shirt hot. So hot. You can't believe how hot. I can believe it was hot. No, it was t-shirt hot. T-shirt hot. That hot." In their spare time they crush people in cars at the junkyard and press them flat, creating strange dry-cleaning-type press-skin-work notable for its decorative yakuza tattoos.

Did I mention the younger yakuza just got a circumcision and the elder yakuza made him show it to him? Then he (the older yakuza) presented younger yakuza with crotchless panties to present to the first woman he introduces to the new basket? Well he did.

But his boss is dead. Or is he? Seems he can be found, although he's now an attractive, horny, young woman. The younger yakuza resists her temptations, but is convinced it's actually the elder yakuza. His boss, the yakuza boss, is not convinced and cannot resist the temptation. He wants to sex up the formerly male yakuza woman and he wants to do it his way...a kink involving a ladle up the backside, his backside. He has several ladles in strange little shrines, and he opts for the hardest ladle he has. That's unfortunate, because the younger yakuza interrupts the sex act and the boss falls backward onto his ladle, killing himself in what he seems to feel is just a great way to go. But he's not quite dead...not until the younger yakuza finishes the deed by taking an electrical wire to the ladle. Whew...older yakuza brother is safe. But this close call has made them feel that much closer...close enough to do the deed.

The deed involves the crotchless panties and lasts about ten seconds until it's interrupted by young woman who was older yakuza' ('s a pun...just wait)...grabbing the younger yakuza's recently circumcized wang and refusing to let go. This isn't just your "hey, let go!" scene. This is crawling around the room, dragging a young woman with you, attached at the crotch. When the younger yakuza finally does manage to break free, it is to the awareness that what has him by the balls is a hand...extending from her crotch (if you must see this, here's a picture link). Older yakuza brother is rebirthed in an extended birthing scene that literally ends with a "ploink" as he slides out of her, across the floor and smack into younger yakuza brother who evinces surprise, but a pleased surprise. The yakuza brothers give young woman who was older yakuza brother a bath so she can regain her lost fluids, and they all finish the movie happily with their arms around each other strolling through the city.

That's not a movie, you say. But it is. A psychosexual bout of insanity exploring the mind of younger yakuza brother and his need for a circumcision so late in life, his lack of sexual experience, his obvious pseudo-sexual bonding with older yakuza brother, mayhap a bit of homosexual tendencies, and a host of mother issues including breast feeding, birth, fluid phobia and the like. Damn if they don't cram a ladle-load of issues into just 90 minutes.

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