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Focus (1997)

Drama | Japanese Movie | Japan | 73 min
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Satoshi Isaka makes his directorial debut with this psychological thriller and expose on Japan's voracious media. Iwai (Akira Shirai) is a television director with dubious morals and a great suit. Iwai wants to do a piece on Kanemura (played by Japanese Gen-X poster boy Tadanobu Asano) -- a nerdy otaku with a passion for electronic eavesdropping equipment. As Iwai, accompanied by his equally ambitious assistant (Keiko Unno) and cameraman, prepares his interviewee, Kanemura grows increasingly apprehensive -- and for good reason. Seeking to turn the nebbish otaku's life into an object of tabloid sensation, Iwai tries repeatedly -- though unsuccessfully -- to insinuate himself into Kanemura's privacy. Kanemura soon wants little to do with the man, but Iwai remains doggedly persistent. Later, when he learns of a contraband gun deal from Kanemura's machinery, Iwai realizes that his human-interest piece has evolved into something much bigger. With Kanemura along as an unwilling assistant, Iwai stages a discovery scene of the stolen weapons. Then a trio of skate punks barges into the shoot, demanding to know what the crew is doing. Iwai's attempts to shoo the youths away only inflame the situation and soon they are attacking the group -- Kanemura snaps. Soon blood is on the walls, people are killed and at least one person is raped.

Tags: Politics