The Mystery of Rampo

Overview

Edogawa Rampo -- a pen name that is also a homonym in Japanese for Edgar Allen Poe -- amassed a major cult following after writing a series of short stories that masterly meld the erotic and the grotesque. Unlike previous films about of his work -- such as Noboru Tanaka's masterful Stroller in the Attic -- this piece is not so much an adaptation of his work than a dreamlike vision of his inner workings. Set during the 1930s, Rampo (Naoto Takenaka), after learning that his piece Osei Tojo was censored by the ...
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Overview

Edogawa Rampo -- a pen name that is also a homonym in Japanese for Edgar Allen Poe -- amassed a major cult following after writing a series of short stories that masterly meld the erotic and the grotesque. Unlike previous films about of his work -- such as Noboru Tanaka's masterful Stroller in the Attic -- this piece is not so much an adaptation of his work than a dreamlike vision of his inner workings. Set during the 1930s, Rampo (Naoto Takenaka), after learning that his piece Osei Tojo was censored by the government, reads a newspaper article about an incident that bears freakish similarity to his suppressed story. The article details a murder investigation surrounding Sonoko (Michiko Hada), the wife of an antique dealer who was found suffocated in an large oblong chest. At the funeral, Rampo is immediately drawn to Sonoko, who exudes a certain femme fatal magnetism. She fires his creativity and soon he is banging out a sequel to his censored work. In his story, Osei becomes the lover of a debauched aristocrat (Mikijiro Hira) who likes to sexually humiliate the recent widow. Meanwhile, a straight-arrow detective, Kogoro Akechi (Masahiro Motoki), ventures to the count's estate to further investigate the murder. While writing this tale, he passionately pursues Osei in real life -- or at least what he thinks is real life. This film was famous in Japan for its turbulent production history. Producer Kazuyoshi Okuyama was displeased with original director Rintaro Mayuzumi's faithful, delicate version of the film and reshot 80 percent of the film, fashioning it into a flashier, bawdier affair. Both versions were released in Japan.
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Original theatrical trailer; Original Japanese: stereo surround; English & Spanish language subtitles
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/10/2004
  • UPC: 027616902306
  • Original Release: 1994
  • Rating:

  • Source: Mgm (Video & Dvd)
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Theatre Wide-Screen (1.85.1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Surround
  • Language: Japanese
  • Time: 1:41:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Masahiro Motoki Kogoro Akechi
Naoto Takenaka Edogawa Rampo
Michiko Hada Shizuko
Teruyuki Kagawa Masashi Yokomizo
Mikijiro Hira Marquis Ogawara
Julie Dreyfus
Nekohachi Edoya
Kirin Kiki
Ittoku Kishibe
Shiro Sano
Technical Credits
Kazuyoshi Okuyama Director, Executive Producer, Screenwriter
Mayazumi Rintaro Director
Kenichi Benitani Musical Direction/Supervision, Sound/Sound Designer
Yuhei Enoki Screenwriter
Kyoko Heya Production Designer
Masahiro Kawasaki Musical Direction/Supervision
Akimasa Kawashima Editor
Yoshihisa Nakagawa Producer
Yoshinobu Nishioka Producer
Yasushi Sasakibara Cinematographer
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Hope Chest/Main Title [4:22]
2. Osei's Crime [5:17]
3. Censored [1:38]
4. The Commercial Stuff [4:44]
5. The Appearance [3:58]
6. A Changed Reality [3:25]
7. Broken Treasure [4:31]
8. The Way Out [6:00]
9. Monstrous Movie [5:45]
10. Inside His Novel [6:14]
11. Enter the Alter Ego [4:04]
12. Ogawara's Poison [4:15]
13. Watching, Waiting [4:48]
14. Dreams Without Pleasure [8:49]
15. A Cruel Joke [3:23]
16. The Poe Poem [4:19]
17. Ultimate Entertainment [3:45]
18. One Last Confession [5:39]
19. Imaginary Deaths [13:02]
20. End Credits [2:26]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Play Movie
   Scene Selections
   Theatrical Trailer
   Subtitles
      English
      Español
      None
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