Hausu (1977)

Genre: Horror, Comedy

Cast: Kimiko Ikegami, Miki Jinbo, Kumiko Oba

Synopsis: A bunch of girls with ludicrous names go to visit an estranged aunt in a beautiful country house. A bunch of crazy shit happens involving a piano, flying logs, and a cat.

What the actual fuck is this movie? If there was ever a movie that epitomizes the ‘WTF Japan’ theme then it’s this one. The film is so bizarre and unusual that it almost becomes a caricature of itself. However, I have never really experienced a film quite like this before so it was completely refreshing at the same time. I kind of feel like everyone who made this movie was on some kind of mysterious psychotropic drug and that explains why everything in this movie is just a beautiful and messy orgy of ridiculousness. I seriously thought I was hallucinating but after a few minutes I was quite pleased to discover that I had not gone insane from too much weed. No, I am not insane. However, after watching this movie, I am sure that everyone in Japan is.

At the time Hausu was made I guess the techniques that were used were state of the art but by today’s standards they’re just…odd. Odd and anachronistic. Watch in amazement as each scene ends with a psychedelic scene swipe which compliments a chilling techno soundtrack of a cat being beaten with an auto-tune machine. Everyone involved in the technical direction of this movie clearly had the impulse control of a drunken Lindsay Lohan….which makes is instantly brilliant. This movie will club you over the head with its weirdness but it still retains its Japaneseyness through the regular schoolgirl up-skirt shots and with the girls’ exposed breasts.

Speaking of the girls, they all have hilariously one-dimensional names that reflect their personal talents. The pretty one is Gorgeous, the musical one is Melody, and the martial artsy one is Kung Fu. The best character however is Gorgeous’ step mother who is constantly followed by soft lighting and a dramatic gust of wind which catapults her silk scarf into the air. It’s just overkill but the best possible kind. I didn’t feel much of a connection with the characters but I suppose in a movie like this you really don’t have to. In fact, it kind of made what was happening to them all the more funny.

If you can get over the hilarity of this film though you’ll discover that it actually functions quite well as a horror movie. The central plot is fairly creepy as it deals with isolation, aging, and cannibalism, a theme that isn’t often explored outside of the zombie sub-genre. Once you invest in the movie you begin to see what it’s actually trying to be which creates a multidimensional viewing experience. I had a lot of fun watching this movie and I think it will satisfy all kinds of horror fans. Just make sure you’re stoned when you watch this. It’s a whole different experience.

High-lights:

  • A girl getting eaten by a piano and another by a lamp. It has to be seen to be believed.
  • I want to smoke whatever Gorgeous’ step mother has been smoking and then listen to the cat music.
  • Any of the scenes involving Kung Fu fighting inanimate objects.
  • Really nice closing credits.
  • The movie was low-budget but had a lot of heart.

Downers:

  • At times it feels like the wet dream of a dirty Japanese business man with a very specific and terrifying fetish.

Summary:

Although not flawless this movie is a riot. Suitable for any occasion. I highly recommend that you watch this after smoking a strain that’s going to elevate your senses. If you do then you’re in for a treat! The technical brilliance/fuck uppery will blow your mind.

8.5/10

Advertisements

7 Comments

Filed under Comedy, Great, Horror

7 responses to “Hausu (1977)

  1. >If there was ever a movie that epitomizes the ‘WTF Japan’ theme then it’s this one.<

    Oh, my brother. You must see The Calamari Wrestler posthaste, and then dive into the rest of Minoru Kawasaki's unbearably brilliant output. WTF JAPAN. I LOVE YOU.

  2. I’ve been meaning to see this. Should I buy it?

  3. lmao…This is the second review I’ve read about this movie, and it’s pretty much the same opinion. I think I added this to my Amazon wish list at some point. I didn’t know there were exposed breasts, though. I’ll bump it up a few notches.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s