Saturday, July 19, 2008

Thirteen Steps (13 kaidan/13 階段-2003)

Thirteen Steps
Takashi Sorimachi - Junichi Migami
Tsutomu Yamazaki - Shoji Nango
Kankuro Kudo - Toru Kihara
Shofukutei Tsurubei ... Sugiura
Rena Tanaka - Ako Nango
Tetsuya Bessho - Nakamori
Susumu Terajima - Okazaki
Hiroyuki Miyasako - Minoru Terada
Ren Osugi - Norio Ando
Naomi Nishida - Kazuko Migami
Sabu Kawahara
Sanshô Shinsui

Toru Kihara has been sentenced to death for the murder of two senior citizens. The problem in this particular case is that Kihara does not remember a thing of what happened due to an amnesia inducing bike accident the same night of the murder. On the request of a nameless figure, Toru’s lawyer’s hire Shoji Nango, an old prison guard, to go back to the small town and investigate the case.

Nango eventually secures the help of Junichi Mikami, a young ex-con who was sentenced to three years in prison for the accidental killing of a man in a bar room brawl. Together, they will discover that some elements of the murder are connected in a strange way to Junichi’s own criminal record. What exactly does Junichi have to do with the Toru Kihara case? That is what Nango will try to solve within the short period allowed, as Kihara’s time of execution is quickly approaching.

Hmm? This movie was totally thrilling. It's a slow paced movie and not recommended for some who are thrill seekers. This mystery/drama/thriller does reach it's maximum until the very end.

If you watch this, I'd advise to pay special close attention to all the characters and what they do and say...because it all comes to light at the end. Surprisingly though, the end was a little Hollywoodish to the point of sickeningly sweet that shouldn't have happened. It was almost soap opera-ish.

That one part of the movie, the very, very, very end was the only point where I was like "Nooooooo!" So that 1% of the movie could have been canned...but the other 99% was totally awesome. I really think this movie, if shown here in Texas. was seen....would probably get banned. LOL! We are the only state in the US and pretty much the whole world that has the highest death penalty rate. Our motto is "Don't mess with Texas." It should be "Don't F*ck Up in Texas." LOL!

This movie asked many questions that would be hard to respond by any viewer of any class. Are lives worth it? An eye for an eye? Is the death penalty really an atonement for the wrongs that were made by the inmate?

I really think this will have some of us think in a different light. I will say that I liked the catch phrase...."To live life is an atonement for the dead."

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