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Happiness of the Katakuris [Import]
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This one scene alone tells you just what kind of movie "The Happiness of the Katakuris" is, and whether you're going to like it. Takashi Miike -- well known for gruesome action movies -- is pretty obviously having a ball as he tells the colorful, chaotic story of a singing family and the people who have the misfortune to visit their hotel. Zombies, random musical numbers, and family strife are all here in abundance.
The Katakuri family is made up of four generations of family, criminal activity, and general hopelessness -- the only one currently immune is the little granddaughter.
And things are not improved when the head of the family Masao (Kenji Sawada) is laid off from his job. So he purchases a remote hotel, after being told that a major road is going to be run nearby. But nobody checks in until one rainy night, when a strange man appears -- and then stabs himself on a sharpened keychain. Cue the Japanese techno and dance number!
Terrified that the suicide will ruin their reputation, the Katakuris surreptitiously bury the man in the woods -- only to have more guests die in bizarre ways, and end up buried in the woods. Oh yeah, and Shizue's (Naomi Nishida) new boyfriend is a criminal. As a typhoon approaches and their secret burials are threatened with discovery, can this family of failures pull it together -- or will everything blow up in their faces?Read more ›
being an avid lover of the cinema, I have always had great respect for directors that like to push the envelope and do something unique as well as creative. This movie goes above and beyond the call of duty to accomplish that. I am of two minds about this movie, I'm not saying I don't like it, in fact I think it's one of the best foreign films I've ever seen. Yet at the same time I feel like going up to Takashi Miike and saying 'What kind of a sick freak are you?' It's amazing how a movie can pull your feelings in different directions.
This film seems to defy all the conventions of genre and/or style in regards to movie making, because it seems like Miike threw all of the rules right out the freaking window.
The film is indeed a feel-good black comedy, it's also a musical, a horror film, a romantic comedy, and a family film. It's strange how one film can be all of these things at one time, and yet be none of these things at the same time.
i swear, sometimes I felt like I was watching a Japanese version of Monty Python's The Sound of Music. That is essentially the best way I could ever describe this film. The film also incorporates avant-garde and absurdist slapstick situational comedy along with other great stuff thrown in, including moments of claymation thrown in for good measure.
It is the sort of film that you can't help but get drawn into, not just because of everything that I just mentioned above, but also thanks in large part to the incredible performances by the actors and actresses involved.Read more ›
"The Happiness of the Katakuris" is not a film for anyone with expectations of what a film should be like. It is a remake of the Korean film "Choyonghan kajok," and tells the story of a family who opens a bad-luck inn, where all the guests keep [expiring] through suicide of accident. A black comedy, it might be said to be in the tradition of "Arsenic and Old Lace."
Stylistically, the film follows no conventions, and slips into claymation at whim, musical at whim, and straight drama at whim. The cast is all delightful, and you find yourself rooting for each and everyone of them.
If you are in the mood for something strange and funny, you can't go wrong with "The Happiness of the Katakuris."
the Katakuri clan: grandpa Jinpei, the old crusty family patriarch,
and his little Benji-style mutt Pochi; Masao (Kenji Sawada), an
ex-shoe salesman, and his wife Terue (Keiko Matsuzaka), who met at
work, fell madly in love with each other and stayed that way; their
divorcee daughter Shizue (Naomi Nishida), a pretty and sweet girl who
unfortunately is unbelievably gullible, making her a complete pushover
for every lying jerk that comes around; their son Masayuki (Shinji
Takeda), who has a bit of an attitude problem and a history of
problems with the law concerning lifting wallets and the like; and
Shizuo's little daughter, who is something of an observer to the
Masao, having been laid off from work, invests in a country house to
rent rooms to vacationers, bringing together his semi-dysfunctional
family in an earnest attempt to get things back on track.
Unfortunately, they can't seem to get any guests, driving everyone to
distraction; and so when a gloomy stranger shows up and asks for a
room, everyone is ecstactic. They are distressed, then, when he
commits suicide during the night. Instead of reporting the incident
to the police, Masao decides that it would be healthier for business
if they simply buried the poor fellow in the woods, and manages to get
everyone to agree. However, this turns out to be only the beginning
of a streak of really terrible luck, which just seems to go from bad
to worse ...
As this description suggests, THOTK is a quirky film, made all the
more quirky by the fact that it is a musical.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
This is one of miike's best movies. a combination of horror, comedy, drama, and a musical is a very original film. it has segments using claymation even. Read morePublished on March 17 2004
"Happiness of the Katakuris" is about this japanese family who own a guest house in the rural japanese countryside. Read morePublished on March 8 2004 by GoGo Horrorshow
Miike is known for him graphic violence, strange sense of humor, and shocking imagry, but claymation and musical numbers?! Read morePublished on Feb. 24 2004
That is all I could say after seeing this movie for the first time. I was pretty confused and I wasn't even sure where I was. This movie was not good or bad. Read morePublished on Dec 27 2003
With this film, Avant-guarde Japanese director Takashi Miike shows that he still has a sense of humor. Read morePublished on Aug. 15 2003 by James Lee
"The Happiness of the Katakuris" is one part Robert Wise, one part Tim Burton and 100% Japanese kitsch (think ninja sequence in the "Peaches" video by The... Read morePublished on Aug. 4 2003
A Japanese family starts a guest-house on the top of a hill but it seems to be jinxed -- all the guests who visit them have an unfortunate habit of dying. Read morePublished on July 14 2003 by Nearly Nubile
THE HAPPINESS OF THE KATAKURIS is the Japanese remake of the Korean black comedy, QUIET FAMILY, as filtered through director Miike's pitch-black sensibilities. Read morePublished on May 12 2003 by Greg Goodsell
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