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Miike Takashi - Genius or Depraved Perv?


Angry Postal Worker
28 Nov 2002
It's a struggle to find Japanese films outside of Japan, unless they're fifty years old or belong to the "extreme" genre. I must admit I'm a big fan of "Beat" Takeshi Kitano, so having found one gem in the mire of the Japanese extreme films available in the UK, I thought I'd try finding out more about Takashi Miike.

I bought Audition after reading rave reviews. It's a brilliant film, although I've only watched it once. The last 15 minutes put me off repeat viewings. . . I won't spoil it for anyone yet to see the film . . . just be sure to sit near a bucket. Rather than blindly spend money on others of Miike's films, I've been checking out features and reviews online and in magazines. Is it just me, or is this one sick bar steward?

I don't know about everyone else, but watching someone masturbate onto a pot plant while watching a woman being raped doesn't sound like entertainment to me. All of Miike's films (with the sole exception of Audition, it seems) look like they involve rape, or at the least use women in roles as objects rather than characters. In one review, Miike said that he didn't make films with strong female characters or leads because "he is a man and only understands the thoughts of men". I'd hate to meet any of his male buddies, considering what the blokes in his films get up to.

It seems to me that all this stuff about Miike being a cinematic visionary is a load of old arse. If he can't even put himself in the place of a woman sufficiently to create a proper female character, what kind of director is he? Imagine if Studio Ghibli took his stand - all their films feature strong female characters, usually in the lead role. Beat Takeshi has a number of strong female characters in his films - I think his latest film, "Dolls", features a number of (admittedly tragic) female characters. Why the hell is Miike's stuff so easy to find when there must be so many better Japanese films that have never made it off their native shores?

Oooooooooo, it makes me MAD!
The reason his films are so popular and easy to find outside Japan, is because that genre is practically not done in Hollywood. If anyone tries it gets killed by the censors.

Generally people are perverted primitive beings that like to watch people suffer. Takashi simply offers what many people want to see.
It's a bit unfair to compare him with other directors, since every director has his or her own trademark. Otherwise they wouldn't be outstanding.
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Well, i've just watched Audition and i must conclude that Takashi is a genius. He's toying with his audience.

The fact that this movie has two endings is also explained in the movie itself: "The sponsor didn't like a certain part of the movie".

I think Takashi is a fan of David Lynch.
I have never seen any movie directed by Miike Takashi, but reading through the reviews I got interested.

Generally people are perverted primitive beings that like to watch people suffer. Takashi simply offers what many people want to see.

I am afraid that's true, Peter.

Miike himself vehemently denies that Audition is meant as social criticism. In fact he denies the existence of any kind of artistic pretense in his films, instead stating that he is in no position to criticise his fellow men and that he simply wants to create the best possible result from the material offered to him.

Midnight Eye offers excellent reviews of Takashi's oeuvre:


Dead or Alive - Hanzaisha

Dead or Alive 2 - Tobosha

City of Lost Souls - Hyoryu Gai

By the way, the reviewer is member of our board, but hasn't been around for a while.
Wow, this thread seems to be dead since February, why?
However I have seen only the "Audition" and "Visitor Q" - I vote for the "Genius".

As about "Visitor Q" - some reviews I agree with are at
Natural Born Viewers | Reviews about…..well, everything!
Midnight Eye review: Visitor Q (Bijita Q, 2001, Takashi MIIKE)
Visitor Q (JAPAN 2001)

Hey, Hairyneville (I really like your Angry Postal Worker letters by the way 🌹 ), do you think all those Japanese people reading violent mangas while commuting to work are just a dangerous murderous perverts (not to mention the writers)?


As about women in Takashi Miike's movies,
just read a page on a movie made by Shungiku Uchida (a mother in the 'Visitor Q")
(by the way, anyone knows where I can find her mangas online? Her homepage has moved OUT).

Well, to me it's an extraordinary movie: I have been watching it, and thinking: oh no, it's just a metaphor (exaggerated witty comment on the social reality; a movie on the fantasy), one can't take it serious.... and then - after it's finished I realized it all CAN be true (such things do happen... and everywhere)... just a happily regressed psychotic family, a moment ago before Police comes... a definite Japanese David Lynch (or even better). Not a Lost Highway - but a Lost JR Track.

Ja mata ne!
watch Happiness at the katakuris, Sound of music meets, low key thriller & a touch of wallace and gromit.

He does comedy and he is very good at it!
My favorite
Happiness of the Katakuri's is one of his best movies ! It made me laugh so much !! ^^
Miike tha Man

I don't know if this has been discussed (I'm new here) but I read an interview with Miike where he stated he eliminates the fiemale characters quickly before they have any chance to bring a sense of order to the chaotic universes the male characters occupy.

Male's are warlike and nonsensical by nature, and to have an entity/person/female that brings order to his universe would be to give an unfair advantage to the protagonist(s).

I dunno, but I feel the guy has a point there.

I've done a few reviews of Miike films (one with my fiancee/review team partner) on the site which you may want to check out.

Dead or Alive: Hanzaisha


Ichi the Killer

I plan on checking out Gozu this weekend.

Tell me what you think :)

i would certainly say Miike is a genius...

regarding his use of female characters - i think he is trying to show that we are perfectly fine with watching men being sliced to bits etc but if we watch it happening to a woman we are sickened - so in an odd kind of way he is promoting gender equality..........or maybe not, i dont know :p

at the end of the day his films are hugely entertaining - and im not talking solely about the violence - everything about the mise en scene is perfect for me- the sets, the sound/music etc etc...the guy is a genius
Miike is most definitely a genius, this thread seems to be focused on violence so here's an excerpt from the only English language book about the director (Agitator by Tom Mes), regarding a controversial scene from Ichi the Killer where a womans nipple is apparently cut off:

"By using suggestion, Miike implicates the audience in the violence. The violence the viewer purports to have seen took place not on the screen but in his or her own head. The viewer creates and decides for himself the intensity of the violence in these scenes. If it shocks the viewer, then to all intents and purposes the viewer is shocked by his own imagination. The viewer fills in the blanks and is provoked into finding violence inside himself, violence that is more painful and disturbing than anything Miike explicitly shows in the film, because each individual viewer decides the intensity for himself...

...This is a matter of filmmaking technique, it has nothing whatsoever to do with ideology and can therefore not be considered misogynist. Particularly when the filmmaker's intention is to make the viewer question the uncritical consumption of violent images. This leaves no room for misogyny, since it would contradict the intent."

I agree. Sick scenes arent just stuck randomly into his films for the hell of it, this isnt a conventional filmmaker. A regular director would have rape scenes etc, to make the film exciting and popular for the target audience, wheras Miike shrugs genres and target audiences and includes such scenes to either challange the viewer or to develop his characters.

An amazing director whose directed something like 50 films in 11 years, and the majority of them are of amazing quality.
I think Miike is a great director. My favorite movie is Koroshiya Ichi (Ichi The Killer). I like movies with od characters and out of the ordinary scripts. Sure Ichi the Killer is a bloody and gory movie, but that's not all. Great actors and original script just makes this a 10/10 movie...

but that's only my opinon...
My review site will be about everything Asian. So not only movies but all things I can get my hands on. (ok maybe not girls ;))
Ichi the Killer is by far the best (I have seen). The torture scene was cool, the part where the guy was beating and raping his prostitute girlfriend made me smile, and when the head yakuza guy (I forgot his name) was getting beat up and enjoyed it, and the final fight where he dropped all his metal skewers, the nipple slicing...in fact, I love that movie!

I like Audition a lot, aside from the 'feeding scene', that was absolutely disgusting. The ending was nice, unfortunately the dog scared me more than anything else.

Visitor Q, I never even finished that movie it was such crap.

These are, unfortunately, all I've seen. I have Full Metal Yakuza I have been meaning to watch. And Kitano, he's funny :D
Wo! I justed watched Audition and the movie left me feeling like an idiot. Can someone tell me what the hell happend in the end? Did that really happend to Aoyama or was it just a dream?

I gotta tell you the thing that scared me the most was when that phone rang and that girl was just waiting for it.
Audition and Ichi Anime

I guess you could attribute it to a fever dream of sorts. Sort of a mix of flashbacks and dreamscapes based un knowledge he had acquired but not quite assembled. She did torture the hell out of him though.

As for the Ichi Anime, I've got it, along with 6 of the ichi mangas. The anime I have on dvd and the manga's are huge zip files. If you want I could find a way to make the manga's available to you online.

Either way, the anime was sort of a disappointment. It actually was kind of annoying.
i thought the anime was pretty cool. nothing special, but enjoyable. havent got round to getting hold of the manga though. and i thought visitor q was pretty good. i almost turned it off myself at the beginning because it is just porn for about 10 minutes..but it gets better as it goes on - the bit where the dad confronts his son's bullys outside the house has me in hysterics every time :D
The part where he gets stuck inside the dead girl was surprisingly funny as well. He even came loose with a cork popping sound.

I agree. After you get past the first 10 minutes, Visitor Q is a blast.
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