HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Breaking In
Breaking In
Please Stand By
Cockeyed Cowboys of Calico County, The
Deadpool 2
Smart Money
Lupin the Third vs. Detective Conan: The Movie
Gangsta
3 Nuts in Search of a Bolt
Magic Serpent, The
That's Not Me
There Goes the Bride
Billy the Kid versus Dracula
Liquid Sword
I, Tonya
Universal Soldier: Regeneration
Bad Match
Güeros
Anchor and Hope
One, The
Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie
Lucky
Still of the Night
Home Sweet Homicide
Mannaja - A Man Called Blade
Spitfire
Killers from Space
Castle of the Creeping Flesh
Ghost Stories
Wild Boys, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Manor On Movies--Black Shampoo--three three three films in one
Manor On Movies--Invasion USA
Time Trap: Last Year in Marienbad and La Jetée
Gaining Three Stone: Salvador, Natural Born Killers and Savages
Right Said Bernard: Cribbins on DVD
1969: The Year Westerns Couldn't Get Past
A Network Horror Double Bill: Assault and Death Line on Blu-ray
The Edie Levy: Edie Sedgwick, Andy Warhol and Ciao! Manhattan
The Ultimate Trip: The Original Psychedelic Movies
Players of Games: Willy Wonka, Tron and Ready Player One
What Am I Doing Hangin' 'Round? The Ends of The Monkees
Flings and Arrows: Conquest vs Flesh + Blood
Orson Around: F for Fake and The Late Great Planet Earth
ITC What You Did There: Retro-Action on Blu-ray
And It Was the Dirtiest Harry We Have Seen in a Very Long Time: The Dirty Harry Series
   
 
  Happiness of the Katakuris, The Dead And BreakfastBuy this film here.
Year: 2001
Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Kenji Sawada, Keiko Matsuzaka, Shinji Takeda, Naomi Nishida, Kiyoshiro Imawano, Tetsuro Tamba, Naoto Takenaka, Tamaki Miyazaki
Genre: Horror, Musical, Comedy, Weirdo
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Mr Katakuri lost his job as a shoe salesman, but in the depths of his despair, he had an idea: open a guesthouse in the Japanese countryside to cater for tourists. It won't be long before a new road is opened, and Mr Katakuri is hoping that will bring customers. His whole family are hired to help out, but business is quiet until a depressed loner arrives and unfortunately commits suicide in his room. The Katakuris decide to hide the body, but this is only the beginning of their problems...

Prolific director Takashi Miike emerged in the nineties as an idiosyncratic talent to watch, and this bizarre musical, scripted by Kikumi Yamagishi, shows no signs of him directing something ordinary. The songs range from sugary ballads to a sort of rock opera, and usually crop up in the most unlikely places: for instance, when the Katakuris discover the first body, they begin dancing dramatically and screaming along in time with the music!

The guesthouse makes Fawlty Towers look like The Ritz, what with all the bodies piling up and general bad luck that follows the family around. There are six of them, the highly strung father and mother, the irascible grandpa, the son who's just been released from prison, and the daughter who was made pregnant while at school age and has a little daughter of her own. Not forgetting the pet dog. They all yearn for the quiet, ordinary life, but have to accept that things don't always go to plan - if at all.

The important thing here is that no matter what life throws at the Katakuris, they remain optimistic, whether in the face of murderers, con men, or their own guilt at covering up the deaths that follow them around. Hopes and dreams are paramount in getting through life, and it's their determination to look on the bright side that makes them engaging. When the daughter falls in love at first sight with a Japanese man who claims not only to be in the U.S. Navy, but also a member of British royalty, she believes every word he says, even when it increasingly becomes clear he's talking rubbish.

The musical numbers are all the more amusing for being performed by actors with limited talent for dancing, and some of their singing isn't much better. To brighten things up, there are animated sequences of stop-motion puppets, when live action would prove to be too expensive, one presumes - a precarious fall over a cliff, or the explosive finale. The philosophising at the end makes me certain the filmmakers are sincere in their message, but the weird, irreverent handling, while refreshing, makes it difficult to take seriously; in spite of its darker elements, it feels light-headed. Also with: dancing zombies.

Aka: Katakuri-ke No Kofuku
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 6048 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Takashi Miike  (1960 - )

Japan’s most controversial director, notorious for his dauntingly prolific output and willingness to push the boundaries of taste. Miike started working as an assistant director in the late 80s, before moving into making straight-to-video thrillers in 1991. He made his feature debut in 1995 with the violent cop thriller Shinjuku Triad Society, and since then has averaged around seven films year.

His best best known pictures are the deeply twisted love story Audition, the blackly comic gorefest Ichi the Killer, cannibal comedy musical Happiness of the Katakuris and the often surreal Dead or Alive trilogy. Films such as The Bird People in China and Sabu showed a more restrained side. With later works such as samurai epic 13 Assassins and musical For Love's Sake he showed no signs of slowing down, reaching his hundredth movie Blade of the Immortal in 2017. A true original, Miike remains one of the most exciting directors around.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Who's the best?
Steven Seagal
Pam Grier
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Stately Wayne Manor
  Patrick Keenan
Enoch Sneed
Ian Phillips
  Afra Khan
  Dan Malone
   

 

Last Updated: