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Gemini
     

Gemini

Director: Shinya Tsukamoto

Cast: Masahiro Motoki, Ryo, Yasutaka Tsutsui

 
Shinya Tsukamoto's latest work is a bit of a departure for the director of such over-the-top cult films as Tetsuo: Iron Man (1989). Though punctuated by his trademark kinetic camera work, this moody gothic horror film has the sort of brittle formalism more common in Japanese domestic dramas of the 1940s and 1950s. Dr. Yukio Daitokuji (Masahiro Motoki) is a

Overview

Shinya Tsukamoto's latest work is a bit of a departure for the director of such over-the-top cult films as Tetsuo: Iron Man (1989). Though punctuated by his trademark kinetic camera work, this moody gothic horror film has the sort of brittle formalism more common in Japanese domestic dramas of the 1940s and 1950s. Dr. Yukio Daitokuji (Masahiro Motoki) is a well-to-do doctor living in a wealthy neighborhood located near a shantytown. He lives in a gorgeous old house along with his father, mother, and beautiful young wife Rin (Ryo). The couple seems happy, but Rin's lack of a past, due to amnesia, is a source of anxiety for the socially conscious doctor. The rigid respectability of the couple's upstanding bourgeois life shatters when a bizarre rag-wearing man kills off Daitokuji's parents in sudden and gruesome manners. The terror gets ratcheted up a notch when the mysterious assailant throws Daitokuji into a deep well on the family grounds and then reveals himself to be physically identical to the young doctor. The stranger assumes Daitokuji's identity by making passionate love with his wife and threatening to kill his patients. Tsukamoto brilliantly juxtaposes the oppressive opulence of the upper class, characterized by deathly silences and Kubrick-like compositions, with the grubby, desperate world of the slums, whose residents could have populated The Road Warrior (1981). While Tsukamoto's fascination with revenge, doppelgangers, and male rage, as seen in Tokyo Fist (1995) and Bullet Ballet (1998), are clearly present in this work, it also showcases the director's growing stylistic maturity. This film was screened at the 1999 Toronto Film Festival.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jason Buchanan
Perhaps the most mature and accomplished film to date for the ever-unpredictable Shinya Tsukamoto, Gemini is a hauntingly low-key voyage into the dark realm of identity loss and lost love. Moving ever more away from the frenetic camera work that defined his early breakthrough features, Tsukamoto here goes for a more refined, quiet terror that proves as effective at building a sense of impending dread as his earlier works were at shocking audiences with audacious abandon. Though die-hard Tetsuo: The Iron Man fans may at first be dismayed at the somber tone struck early on, the opening images and story trajectory prove that, even if Gemini isn't as seductively manic as Tsukamoto's previous films, it still contains the same, if not more, horrific energy. With a hypnotic tone and visual scheme that lulls viewers into a chilled trance, the well-timed outbursts of nightmarish imagery give the impression of a waking nightmare captured on celluloid. With cold, stark compositions that invoke memories of Stanley Kubrick, Gemini consistently maintains its dormant menace throughout as Chu Ishikawa's low-key score delivers appropriate chills while avoiding the "jump cues" familiarly associated with the genre. Combine these two highly effective methods with a cultural critique of the internal void brought on by wealth and the result is a visually rich and viscerally terrifying film that will no doubt send chills down the spine of even the most jaded of horror fans.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/23/2006
UPC:
0014381298925
Original Release:
1999
Rating:
NR
Source:
Image Entertainment
Region Code:
1
Time:
1:23:00

Special Features

"The Making of Gemini" directed by Takashi Miike; Special makeup documentary; Trailer; Photo gallery

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Masahiro Motoki Dr. Yukio Daitokuji/Sutehiko
Ryo Rin
Yasutaka Tsutsui Actor
Shiho Fujimura Actor
Akaji Maro Actor
Naoto Takenaka Actor
Renji Ishibashi Actor
Tadanobu Asano Actor

Technical Credits
Shinya Tsukamoto Director,Cinematographer,Editor,Screenwriter
Yasuhiko Furusato Executive Producer
Chu Ishikawa Score Composer
Shibazaki Kenji Sound/Sound Designer
Michiko Kitamura Costumes/Costume Designer
Toshiaki Nakazawa Executive Producer
Futoshi Nishimura Producer
Takashi Sasaki Production Designer
Yohei Taneda Production Designer
Tomoyuki Tsuruoka Associate Producer

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Gemini
1. Meeting the Family [8:11]
2. In the Way [11:56]
3. Treatment [8:46]
4. Dropped in the Well [10:05]
5. Evil People [10:45]
6. Confused [8:14]
7. Revenge [14:59]
8. A New Life [10:16]

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