Japanese: 寄生獣 Part 1
Romaji: Kiseiju Part 1
Release Date: November 28th, 2014 (Japan)
Running Time: N/A
Director: Takashi Yamazaki
Writer: Ryota Kosawa (Screenplay), Hitoshi Iwaaki (Original Manga)
Starring: Shota Sometani, Ai Hashimoto, Eri Fukatsu, Nao Omori, Pierre Taki, Hirofumi Arai, Kazuki Kitamura, Tadanobu Asano, Jun Kunimura, Kmiko Yo, Masahiro Higashide,
Invasion of the Body Snatchers! Cronenberg Style. This is the first of two movie adaptations of Hitoshi Iwaaki’s sci-fi horror manga, Parasyte (Kiseiju), which was originally serialised in Kodansha’s Afternoon magazine from 1990-1995. I haven’t read the horror manga despite having it on a list of titles I want to finish but it is part of a multimedia adaptation that includes a TV anime scheduled for the autumn season. It is the horror title of the season and I always watch the horror title so I guess I’m going to get very familiar with it.
Mysterious worm-like aliens tumble from the sky and penetrate people through their ears, nose and mouth and head to the brain to live-off and control the invaded bodies! Shinichi Izumi (Sometani) was an ordinary high school student until he was attacked by a parasite and managed to fight it off. For the most part. The parasite still exists and lives in Shinichi’s right hand. Shinichi learns to co-exist with the parasite and because of this he discovers the presence of the other parasites around the world. This makes him a threat to the aliens and so they begin to monitor him by sending another parasite to inhabit the body of his teacher Ryoko Tamiya (Fukatsu). With only his best friend Satomi Murano (Hashimoto) to rely on, what can Izumi do?
I don’t know what to expect from the film but I’m confident that it’s going to be good based on the trailer and how highly the manga is
held – it has been on a long list of horror manga recommendations I follow and only one title has been a dud. The director is Takashi Yamazaki, a big-budget action man with titles like Returner (2002), Space Battleship Yamato (2010) and last year’s box-office mega smash, the WWII saga The Eternal Zero. The scriptwriter is Ryota Kosawa and he has worked on hits with titles like Detective in the Bar (2013).
The cast is lead by Shota Sometani, who gave an amazing performance in the Sion Sono film Himizu (2011). Every other title I have seen him in has assured me that he is one of the most talented actors of his generation. Talking of talent, there is Ai Hashimoto who was part of a strong ensemble cast in Confessions (2010) and The Kirishima Thing (2012) and took the role of Mei Misaki in the live-action adaptation of Another (2012) – review incoming for a horror season. Support comes from Eri Fukatsu, lead actress in Villain (2010), Tadanobu Asano one of the leads in Bright Future (2003) and Jun Kunimura, yakuza boss Muto in Why Don’t You Play in Hell? (2013). Both also starred in Vital (2004), my favourite Shinya Tsukamoto film, an intensely beautiful exploration of memories, love and death.
Here are pictures of Shota Sometani looking cool:
Here’s the PV for the anime: