Saturday, July 14, 2012
Curse of the Dog God (1977)
Japanese cinema has for me mostly been Kaiju-movies and Sonny Chiba. I've never been so much into samurai-movies and the recent Sushi Typhoon-production is just pure crap. I'm not a novice by any mean, I've seen a lot of Japanese movies but it has never been my area. But what I've realized is that the 70's cinema of Japan is something special, like most of the world during that time. The Inugami Family is one of the best and then we have Village of the Eight Gravestones, the Hanzo-films etc. Stuff filled with originality, violence and controversy. Three ingredients that's very important for me. My pal Jon in
package a little while ago, and Curse of the Dog God was included. I've heard
about it since earlier, but this was the first time I was able to actually see
it. And oh boy, this is one original ghost movie... Norway
I team of experts searching for Uranium finds a big heap of at a sacred mountain. On their way up there they accidentally destroys a small spirit house and then even more accidentally hits a dog! One in the team is getting married also, to a village girl, but the owner of the dog - a little boy - throws stones at him during the wedding. As a revenge. Back in the big city strange things starts to happen and soon people around him is dying. His wife is afraid the he's gonna die to, from the curse of the dog god, and goes slowly mad! He takes her back to the village for an exorcism, but it all ends with her dying! THEN shit hits the fan and the Dog God is furious, setting out to kill and destroy!
Wattya say about that set-up? Impressive? Yeah, and it works! I had no idea what this movie was going, and I couldn't in my wildest imagination see a subplot of rapist-wannabe motorcycle hooligans, a flying dog head, a giant drill running amok and so much other weird stuff. Not to mention the traditional female ghost with black hair, but here she's really nasty and violent!
Curse of the Dog God is a beautiful movie, packed with Japanese nature and landscapes, all in ultra-widescreen. The blood is RED, the violence is corny but borders to nasty and it's totally unpredictable. Lots of superlatives here, but this is a great movie - one of the best Japanese movies I've seen in long while. When Sushi Typhoon is churning out bullshit they should look back in time to their own countries past and see how to make original and bizarre genre movies for real and not just like simple, cheap, childish jokes.
But fuck Sushi Typhoon. Why does Curse of the Dog God work, with it's absurd premise and killer dogs, nudity, explosions and ghosts? Just because it's serious. I can guarantee that most movies works good when they're serious and the filmmakers actually trying to make something good out of it instead of joking around like another jackass. The Asian countries has always been experts in making serious, absurd and crazy, genre movies and most of them still do - even Japan sometimes. I like, as a part of the audience, to be taken seriously. And when the filmmakers respect me I'll respect their movie. Sure, there's of course pure horror comedies - but that's a whole different thing.
Lots of rambling in this review, but it's because I'm not sure what to write about Curse of the God Dog. It's that original and should be experienced instead of being a silly review at Ninja Dixon. Now my lust for watching Japanese cinema has awoken once again. Lets see what else I find in the collection...