Palatable: Marebito

Marebito (2004)
Directed by Takashi Shimizu
Written by Chiaki Konaka
Produced by Mikihiko Hirata, Kenzo Horikoshi, Atsuko Ono, Tsukasa Ariyoshi, Takashi Horikoshi, Yoshiyasu Ikezaki, Hiroo Murakami, Fumio Sebata
Starring Shinya Tsukamoto, Tomomi Miyashita, Miho Ninagawa, Kazuhiro Nakahara
Fascinated by a suicide he shot offhand with a news crew, a freelance cameraman and voyeur (Tsukamoto) returns to the crime scene to locate the source of the deceased's (Nakahara) horror, descending into Tokyo's underground depths to a sprawling, mountainous subterranean expanse where he discovers before adopting a feral beauty (Miyashita) whose subsistence exacts his progressive trespasses. As Tsukamoto's anomic videographer explores the substrata of both his environment and psyche to slake a curiosity that's subverted his instincts, Konaka's introspective narrative postulates the nature of terror, morality and sanity as subjective to individual perception. Shimizu's budget video production's a cut above his medial standard; less goofily stridulous foley and fewer cliched devices and dissolves would've meliorated what's otherwise an effectively photographed and performed project. A picture straddling fantasy and psychological horror, it's certainly worth viewing for its most Lovecraftian outlooks.

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