Says filmmaker Toshiaki Toyoda about his movie, Monsters Club:
This is the story about a young man living in a cabin in remote place outside of urban culture and away from all things. Living by himself in the winter covered mountains, we see the emotional survival of the person depicted. I was really thinking about the Unibomber in America. The Unabomber was quite strict, he did not bomb everywhere but was rather making a statement and was thinking about how to make things a little bit different, asking maybe, the question of the people and a question to the people living in a world of egoism. We've got the pyramid in our society. You have the top and then the bottom. I have been asking people: how are we going to survive in this pyramid world?! [ source ]
After we posted the positive reviews on Hard Romanticker, it's inevitable that we mention Monsters Club, since it stars Eita Nagayama, another top Japanese actor who figured prominently in our Top 30 Hottest Japanese Actors.
The reviews are mainly positive, and Twitch posted this:
Monsters Club follows Ryoichi (Eita), a young, cultured man who retreated into a life in the wilderness. A little hunting cabin hidden in a snow-covered mountain becomes Ryoichi's humble shelter from the world. From his cabin, Ryoichi sends bombs and angry letters to CEOs of various corporations as an attempt to repel the advancing modern life. The film is quite a feat, especially considering how the movie was achieved in such a short time period and such an improvisational manner. Slow, steady shots help emphasize a haunting, isolated feeling as we witness Ryoichi unraveling in front of our eyes. The sparse, beautiful landscape of the film grows increasingly unnerving as a mysterious monster enters Ryoichi's periphery. [ source ]
Other reviewers also gave positive reviews to the movie, Flixist noted:
There's something meditative and poetic to the imagery of Monsters Club. Writer/director Toshiaki Toyoda supposedly shot the entire film in two weeks without a script, which I find rather fascinating. For all of its lingering and smoldering and silences, there's a certain tightness to Monsters Club. The dialogue and visuals seem well considered and graceful rather than slapdash, the latter often a sign of films done on the fly. This might have to do with its extremely short run time of 71 minutes. It feels packed, and becomes somewhat stunning once ghosts from Ryoichi's past come to visit. The most striking may be the ghost that looks like a meringue in clown make-up. [ source ]
And finally from 2012moviesUK:
Monsters Club is a beautiful film. Everything about it, from the sparse guitar driven score, the patient cinematography to the emotional performance is awe inspiring – and the film rightly deserves to be judged upon its own merits. Yet also, from the methodology and approach represented in the telling of this tale, I feel that Japanese cinema now has its first glimpse of a chance to change the way in which seemingly unrelated genres might continue. As much as I am looking forward to Tsutomu Hanabusa's Sadako 3D, I don't think it can be counted on to revitalise cinema, genre or otherwise.
Within Monsters Club, within the simple story of a man exploring who he is in both the context of capitalist society and the context of his family, there is a chance to move forward. [ read more ]
View selected photos from the movie:
Have you seen this movie? Are you a fan of Eita Nagayama? Let us know what you think!
|JAPAN CUTS: Festival of New Japanese Film, the largest celebration of new Japanese cinema in North America, is 11 days of blockbusters, documentaries, animations, new classics and avant-garde from Japan’s latest and most exciting directors, writers, and actors. Many films will be making their United States premiere. A few will even be having their international and world debuts. And, in celebrating the JAPAN CUTS’ 10th anniversary, an unprecedented number of screenings will feature exclusive introductions and Q&A’s by special guest filmmakers, stars, and artists.|