Audition

Seven years after losing his wife to cancer, video producer Aoyama (Ryo Another Lonely Hitman Ishibashi) finds the new bride of his dreams at a casting call for a non-existent movie. Asami (Shiina) is modest, polite, sexy, a trained dancer - and, apparently, available. As Aoyama nervously begins dating her, the film slips into nightmare. Is his paranoia and guilt causing him to imagine the worst, or is Asami really a woman physically and mentally damaged by men since her childhood and out for revenge? Creatively reworked from a script by the son of director Shohei Imamura, this was a breakthrough film for Miike: his first to win festival prizes and overseas sales. It takes sex war tensions to an hallucinatory extreme and has a Grand Guignol climax that leaves many males crawling to the exits.

Release details

Duration: 115 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Takashi Miike
Screenwriter: Daisuke Tengan
Cast: Ryo Ishibashi
Eihi Shiina
Miyuki Matsuda
Renji Ishibashi
Tetsu Kuremura
Jun Kunimura

Average User Rating

3.8 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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bleedingcritic

The Japanese have done it again, a great story on offer here that the Hollywood machine needs to keep away from. A slow paced film that's an original ride. Although slow 'Audition' (1999) manages to draw you into the world of a lonely widow who decides seven years after his wife's passing that it's time to date again. This intelligent film will definitely kick start interesting debate, the early scenes mirror how our own judgement can be a little foggy when we fall in love and that sensible friendly advice is ignored, subsequently down the line friends say those magic four little words ''I told you so''. The story also highlights just how easy it is to distort the truth so we can get what we want, be it in the early stages of a relationship or seeking work...Audition is a harsh warning shot to those few casting directors - Never take advantage of your position. Audition works as a one time viewing only because a second run, knowing how everything unravels just can't match the first. It's wise to avoid the trailer or story breakdown because the soul of this wonderful filmed slice is witnessing what happens. If you have seen the film already, I hope you admire it. When the unexpected ignites it is terrifying, absolute quality and just like livestock fire branding you'll be marked forever. The actual story is simple and works well, however there are negatives; There's some confusing moments that give the impression important scenes were edited out and some scenes lacked creativity and other sequences could have been ranked up to the more visually disturbing mark. The flipside to these negatives is that the straightforward and emptiness of the majority of scenes enhance the films climax. The big disappointment for me with Audition is that an alternative brave ending needed to happen, some will be content with the ending as it is. To be fair if Audition was made recently then the end might have been different. Don't let that deter you from watching because if my bleedingreview is the first time 'Audition' has been on your radar then you're in for a treat. And remember never presume you know someone based on the way they look after meeting them for the first time... bleedingcriticâ„¢