JAPAN 2010 Directed by: Yasushi Koshizaka Written by: Yukio Miyajima Produced by: Yukio Miyajima Cinematography by: Susumu Kasahara Cast: Satomi Kaneko, Yo Kamiyoshihara, Toru Amemiya, Tomohiko Isomura, Koji Nakayabu, Mayu Sakuma
What would we all do without today’s technologies? Probably talk to real people, have a real conversation, have real get-togethers, and miss out on all the junk distributed via MMS and internet, including disturbing images that could lure us out into the woods. It’s interesting to compare a terror flick like MAN HUNTING to, say, FRIDAY THE 13TH: back in 1980 it was kind of the idea to keep the victims isolated, contain the murders, control the space and ensure its functionality in the future. Just like Norman Bates in the 60s, the killer had to leave no trace if it was his goal to do it all over again. Today, it’s the killer’s goal to tell the world about it. How pathetic; I thought gentlemen don’t brag. The good old killer etiquette is dead: they are not killing for their own pleasure anymore (or dead mother), they are killing for the public (and very rarely only that means pleasure as well).
MAN HUNTING is no DEATH TUBE, but the story wouldn’t develop the same way without multimedia mobile phones. Not that this makes the film any better or worse than it is. The story is a lame attempt to justify misogynistic torture scenes that are embedded in plot extracts from movies like BATTLE ROYALE, SAW or ALL NIGHT LONG. I am not sure why some filmmakers think doing the same thing others did before – just worse – would be sufficient for any audience out there (but maybe the V-audience is really that undemanding).
In principle, MAN HUNTING could have been an ok genre flick if it wasn’t for an irrational storyline and an outstandingly inelegant execution. Some movies are gross, some are weird, some are raw and realistic, but MAN HUNTING most of all is clumsy. Not only the direction and editing are clumsy, but the special effects: if you have ever watched a making-of by Tom Savini, or any other FX guru, you’ll be laughing out loud seeing many of the wannabe gruesome effects. A movie that has barely anything else to offer is digging its own grave displaying poorly executed scenes of violence. The only effective scenes are those copied from other films, yet MAN HUNTING never achieves the same level of quality.
With clearly less than 90 minutes of running time MAN HUNTING is best suited as opener for a movie night, or downer early in the morning when many are on their way home, or asleep. The only thing MAN HUNTING is killing is time.
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