Director Takashi Miike is widely known in the horror world. He is known as one of the most active directors in the world (with 110 directorial credits at the current age of 60), with an extremely versatile range of projects. But his few horror outings have become cult favorites, including his 1999 project 'Audition.'
A widower is persuaded by his friend to find a new wife. His friend is a movie producer who also encourages him to screen through a series of women by giving them a fake audition for a film - giving him a chance to find the woman of his dreams. But things take a dramatic turn as the relationship is pursued with the quiet and mysterious Asami.
Most photos, trailers, and reviews for this film completely spoil the ending - but the truth is that this movie is extremely effective if you don't see what's coming. That being said, I'm not going to dive into what unfolds or how it's done, but rather I just want to say that this film is well worth your time - whether its your first viewing or a revisit.
It plays out like a Lifetime movie, focusing on the drama and the estrogen going into this relationship, with the horror taking a slow cue and hanging in the back seat - waiting to strike. It's a tad bit sweet at times and isn't overly graphic or hard to watch (until the ending starts to unfurl), but it has this sinister tone that carries itself throughout as we start to learn the secrets being held by our widower and the woman he wishes to date.
It's a great film that holds up well 20 years later, and it may be more relevant than ever now that the #metoo movement has made itself widely known.
"Audition" is currently streaming for free on Tubi.
'Til Next Time, Mike Cleopatra