Audition ★★★★½

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This has been on my horror watch list for a long time. I thankfully didn't know much about the plot specifics going in and I expected a lot of J-Horror insanity and ultra violence. I was pleasantly surprised to find an expertly paced thriller instead. Now there is violence, but it is reserved. Miike spends a long time working up to the reveal. Almost too much time. Just when you start to get lulled into a false sense of security, he reminds you that not everything is as it seems. For the most part, Audition exists in a plausible reality. There are exceptions like the campy ballet teacher and the bag but neither outstayed their welcome.

Eihi Shiina is incredible. From the outset you get the impression that there is something not quite right with Asami. You just can't put your finger on it. Miike slowly doles out the truth piece by piece. The final reveal is unforgettable.

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