DTS Collector's Edition

Starring: Ryo Ishibashi, Eihi Shiina and Tetsu Kuremura
Tartan Video
RRP: 19.99
TVD 3487
Certificate: 18
Available 28 June 2004

Following his son's advice, widower Shigeharu Aoyama decides that it is time to look for a new wife. By devising a plan to audition for the part of a female lead in a non existent production, he uses his professional position to track her down. Among the many applicants, he is struck by the mysterious charms of Asami, a quiet 24 year old, and asks her for a date...

Finding that Asami is responsive to his attentions, Aoyama becomes convinced that she is the woman for him. But when he asks her to accompany him on a romantic holiday things take a dark and disturbing turn. Soon Aoyama will discover that there is a side to Asami that he could never have imagined, even in his most depraved nightmares.

Originally one of Tartan's first Asia Extreme releases, Audition has been re-released with improved picture quality and a gorgeous DTS soundtrack.

This was one of the first Asian films that I ever saw, and I have to say that it is still one of the best. Miike Takashi weaves a lovely little tale of a man coming to terms with the death of his wife and trying to get on with his life. Of course it all goes wrong, but with Miike at the helm, it goes wrong in some of the strangest ways possible.

Whilst it is a very slow going piece, they are plenty of little moments that will keep you interested until the fantastic climax. The acting is superb, and you really do feel for Aoyama as his world gets turned upside down and inside out.

This is not a film for those with weak stomachs and almost certainly will raise a few eyebrows. If you are lucky enough to have seen this film, but don't own it, then you would be wise to pick this up. But if you already own a copy of the original release then I don't believe you can justify this as a purchase.

The DTS sound and the good picture quality are all key selling points for this re-release. But the fact that the only extra on the DVD is a ten minute interview with the director, makes you wonder why they are marketing this as a collector's edition.

Worthy, but could have been worthier.

Simon Lee

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