Rating: 6.5 stars
Seen 1 time
Seen on: 06/18/2020
Most recently watched by sleestakk
Morioh, 1999—a normally quiet and peaceful town has recently become a hotbed of strange activity. Joutarou Kuujou, now a marine biologist, heads to the mysterious town to meet Jousuke Higashikata. While the two may seem like strangers at first, Jousuke is actually the illegitimate child of Joutarou’s grandfather, Joseph Joestar. When they meet, Joutarou realizes that he may have more in common with Jousuke than just a blood relation. Along with the mild-mannered Kouichi Hirose and the boisterous Okuyasu Nijimura, the group dedicates themselves to investigating recent disappearances and other suspicious occurrences within Morioh. Aided by the power of Stands, the four men will encounter danger at every street corner, as it is up to them to unravel the town’s secrets, before another occurs.
Length 120 minutes
I’ve had this DVD from the library network (Park Ridge, to be precise) for 4 months. Since my library is accepting returns now I decided to put this one to bed. I actually started watching it months ago and found it a tad unwieldily for a late night viewing so I stopped. Started from the beginning this time and yep it’s still a lot to grasp. I’m sure it doesn’t help not being familiar w/the manga or anime. Perhaps this works much better for those that have read the story and have knowledge of the lore.
This movie just drops the viewer into the flick and lets one figure it out as it goes. Like the “Stand” superpower which is sorta like have a warrior spirit that can be called out when needed. Everyone that has one has a different type of superpower. None of the powers on display are explained very well; for example I’m still not entirely sure what the main JoJo character’s Stand does. It can travel thru solid objects and deflect solid objects and it can heal even the fatally wounded and mend broken items. But is that it? The other Stands are way more vague and weird.
There’s a lot of primary characters in this and 2+ hours isn’t enough time to manage them all or the threads. There is one JoJo character that appears early on then vanishes for the second half. Oh, that all these related characters have a form of “JoJo” for a name is confusing when they are talking to each other about another JoJo. Of course, I’m sure all this makes sense in the manga / anime. There’s a subplot w/a pretty teenage classmate (Nana Komatsu) of one of the main characters Koichi that just doesn’t really go anywhere and yet it’s one of the more interesting things. I’m guessing some stuff was cut for time.
I’m not sure how much is really Miike in all this because this was a large task to adapt a well-known IP and make it all work. It’s convoluted and dense. I’d like to watch the anime then revisit b/c there are some neat flourishes and a batshit finale. I love that they used Sitges, Spain for the small coastal town. I knew it wasn’t Japan b/c nothing in Japan looks like this. It creates an unusual yet fantasy like environment. Made me wonder if Miike on one of his many visits to Sitges Film Festival thought that location would be a good setting for a movie.
I don’t think this movie has had a proper domestic release so I was surprised the InterLoan had it. Turns out it is a Malaysia DVD (aka bootleg). Super curious how / where the Park Ridge library got this. I mean, sure I can go on eBay and find it but as a library what was that process for the buyer there. I’m guessing someone knew about this title and searched it out b/c they wanted to see it. And being a Malay release (I’ve got a bunch) the subtitles are janky as hell. That also didn’t help the viewing experience for a complex storyline.