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Creepy - By jeffrey-edalatpour - October 20, 2016 - SF Weekly
SF Weekly

Creepy

It’s been six years since Saki’s parents and brother have disappeared. When Koichi, a retired cop, stumbles upon this cold case, he questions her about the past. The director, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, stages a remarkable interrogation scene. It takes place inside a glass-walled office. The camera circles the interview and the light, already a sickly, hospital green, darkens as she searches for memories lost in the aftermath of trauma. In the background, dozens of people go about their daily business oblivious to the anguished conversation taking place nearby. In the meantime, Koichi’s wife Yasuko is settling into their new home. She decides to politely introduce herself to the neighbors by making and delivering a batch of homemade chocolates. When Mr. Nishino (Teruyuki Kagawa) opens his gate to Yasuko, she — and the screen — are overwhelmed by his creepiness. It takes almost 75 minutes for the two plotlines to collide, but when they do, it’s terrifying. The psychological tension builds up minute by minute as each unreliable narrator reveals a feint or a lie. Creepy examines the complexity of Japanese etiquette, the rigid system of personal deference, and then shows how that system strains and breaks under pressure. Yasuko’s curiosity about her odd neighbor fogs her common sense. Her unfailing kindness makes her forget that good fences make good neighbors.