*Hello there, finally I got the guts to complete the English version for the movie review, perhaps it’ll be different a bit from Vietnamese version but don’t worry because my basic clumsy writing still remains the same no matter what language I use lolol. So please pardon me for any grammar mistake as I’ll try to edit them again in the near future.
Spoiler alert (!)
The world of Kanoko is the English name of ‘Kawaki‘ – a horror, crime and thriller Japanese movie based on the novel by Akio Fukamachi.
The movie is about Akikazu, a former detective (who had his family breakup was because of his problematic personality and behaviors, and he was fired because he caused a car crush and hit his wife’s lover), is asked by his ex-wife to look for their daughter, Kanoko, a nice high-school student, who goes missing although before she hasn’t received any caring from her parents. He starts a desperate search of Kanako using any means, during the search, Akikazu has to face with his mental illness, including the hopeless of getting his ideal family back, also the struggles from his ex-colleagues, police officers, the people that in the end of the film, I still confused of their true position, between Justice or just other spoiled officers? Especially, the main narrative, is when he figured out his daughter’s life – Kanoko – is beyond his imagination, it relates to drugs, prostitution, and many more… (oops, it started to sounds more spoiler coming..)
To be honest, this film is out of my league, since I watched it the day which you can called not my cup of tea, and because it’s a bloody and horror, also contains lots of violent scenes film, I ended up watching it in 2 turns. So I’d recommend you guys no having meals while watching this movie, and to brace yourself before you started watching.
Must be noted that, throughout the whole film, characters’ names are not mentioned much but mostly Kanoko, her smile, and the lines from her favorite book Alice in Wonderland: “And she fell, into a very deep hole..”. This is the first time watching a movie that can bring me the excited and scary feelings at the same time, as well as the disgusted feeling also curiosity for the narratives, because the characters have been described so well by actors’ acting. It was the first time in a movie, there’s likely no boundary exists between Good and Evil, when the one who supposes to be the victim but turns out to be the Devil, bad guys turn out to have their own sad and miserable stories, I guess maybe this is just like any other Japanese movie (yes, you know how difficult to understand a truly Japanese movie), so it’s hard to practice any regular rule to judge any character in the movie. In general, the film depicts a spoiled society, where people betray, kill, abuse each other easily, where the pure communication simply doesn’t exist, it’s the world where there’s a sweet, innocent Kanoko, tells you everything you want to hear, and then after you have slowly fell for her, she will start to destroy you, bit by bit. Taken form the movie, the line that perfectly describe Kanoko: “she’s a beautiful girl, but crazy and hollow beauty”. In other words, the film also is a lesson to awake nowadays society, when teenagers grow up without the caring from relatives, lack of caring from family and adults, although this is the period that their perspective both mental and physical change a lot, as well as easy to be affected by others’ influence.
Every detail of the film is pushed to its limit, in an extreme way. Time frame describing characters’ actions overlay on each others, just like their own thoughts, to emphasis on the hopeless the characters are trying to deny, and chase after their own illusions, hopelessly. Regarding of visual effects, the opening of the film uses comic gangster style of America to introduce characters, also to censor/ reduce the way-too-bloody scenes which appear a lot throughout the film. In order to describe Kanoko’s characteristics, Harajuku/ Mori girl style with colorful stickers are used during close-up scenes when she shows up her real self with her friends inside the secret bar, in adorable outfits. Excluding violent scenes, the movie’s atmosphere in short is quite soft, with slightly sadness, along with the touching background music as well as the OST.
I just finished this movie more than a week ago, and I’m living in Japan and there will be Christmas in few more weeks, also to remind you, the set of this film is during Christmas in Japan. Therefore when I watch this movie, I got this some source of awkward feelings. Anyways, I would not recommend this movie for you guys if you truly want something warm and fit with the Christmas feeling to see.. ^^!