Hooked! The director of "Prescription Police" talks about the mysterious world of everyday life

Hyou| 2022-10-24
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In the hit drama "The Statute of Limitations Police," a man helps solve time-consuming cases as a hobby. In "Turtles Swim Surprisingly Fast (2005)," a housewife studies to become a spy. In "Insects Not in the Illustrated Book (2007)," a freelance writer tries to live in the afterlife and is visited by a man she thinks is her father. She wakes up in "Instant Swamp (2009). ......

Hooked!The director of Tensei's story tells of the mysterious world of everyday life.

(2006, 2017, 2019), a hit drama about a hobbyist solving cases that take too long. In "Turtles Swim Surprisingly Fast" (2005), a housewife begins training to become a spy.

In "The Bug That Never Appeared in a Picture Book," (2007), a man wins a posthumous championship in "The Bug That Never Appeared in a Picture Book.

A freelance writer tries his hand at the afterlife in "The Bug That Didn't Appear in the Picture Book 2007" (2007). An editor who visits a man who may be his father and is interested in antiques in "Instant Swamp 2009" (2009). Director Satoshi Miki has consistently depicted fascinating worlds in his numerous dramas and films, and his new film "Convenience Story," released on August 5, 2009, is about a convenience store that leads to another world. We interviewed the director to learn more about this mysterious world. Once you try it, you will be addicted.


Screenwriter Kato (Narita Ryo) and his mysterious wife Keiko (Maeda Atsuko) visit a hot spring inn where the souls of the dead gather.

Many of Miki's early films also featured the theme of the "afterlife. The name of the film's main character, Kato's film company, is "Momogensha." This is taken from the word "Momogenkyo" (桃源郷). A world far removed from everyday life, that is Hirasaka. (the border between this world and the next). Yusuke, a freelance writer for "Insects Not in the Illustrated Book," is asked by the magazine editor-in-chief, Miki Mizuno, to embark on a journey to find a mysterious "deadly insect" in order to live in the afterlife. In the drama "Atami no sokureki" (2010), the boundary between this world and the afterlife is described by the word "line," often used in the case of the disappearance of a school bus carrying four young girls.

Commentary by Director Miki. Motifs from Japanese folklore and Greek mythology.

My interest was not in the afterlife or the occult, but in Japanese folk tales and Greek mythology, such as those of Kunio Yanagida.

In these, the afterlife is connected to the world. My major at university was folklore and archaeology. I wrote my thesis on folk tales and the making of laughter (laughs). Influenced by some of my favorite directors, such as David Lynch and Seijun Suzuki, I made many films, such as "Insects that don't appear in picture books." In addition, I knew the film noir side with "Convenience Story."

I also liked the basic grammar of film noir, which is what happens to the protagonist when a femme fatale (Keiko) or helper arrives in another world. I also liked the older films "Sunset Boulevard" (directed by Billy Wilder, 1950), "The Postman Rings Twice" (directed by Luchino Visconti, 1942), and the Coen Brothers' "Mulholland Drive" (2001) and "Barton Fink" (1991) I'm not sure what I would do if I tried to do it now.

I was also curious to see what it would be like to do it now.

A Everyday life is a gateway to another dimension.

A Kato (Ryo Nara) meets a mysterious clerk, Toru Kageyama, at a reach-in convenience store.

In "Turtles Swim Surprisingly Fast," Suzume (Juri Ueno), a housewife who falls down stone steps, sees an advertisement for a spy. In "Instant Swamp," Haname (Kumiko Aso) discovers her mother's letter in an old mailbox sunk in a lake. Kato (Narita Ryo), a screenwriter, visits a convenience store deep in the mountains. She has a strange experience.

Director Miki speaks.

World Cinema

Watching my films at festivals.

Many people are delighted, but then they ask, " Why doesn't your film feature a refrigerator right away?"

It's true, I use the refrigerator and the bus a lot. Certainly we use buses and refrigerators a lot, but I think it is interesting in terms of the story structure to blend into another world. You go to temporary housing and come back as an adult. For example, "Star Wars" (2001) and "Spirited Away. The story "Instant Swamp" is about the main character visiting a father he does not yet know. When he returns, there is growth and discovery. I believe that is what I mean when I speak of stories. My choice of a convenience store reach-in as a "borderline" story was inspired by my own personal experience. The convenience store clerk, Toru Kageyama (the main character), says to the main character during the reach-in, "There is another world, " which I think we all experience on a daily basis. You are about to get a drink when the man on the other end refills your order. You say, "Oh! What a surprise! " you say. Another time, when you got your change at a local butcher shop, you were puzzled when he said, " That

's ____ yen. Normally, I would think, "It was ____ yen."

What?" "What? Is there a gap in time and space

? The sound of "________" feels like there is a gap somewhere, through which another world is opening up."

A sense of unreality on location

The film was shot at Asagiri Kogen in Shizuoka Prefecture, where Kato wanders deep into the mountains.

Asagiri Highlands, Fujinomiya City, Shizuoka Prefecture. A former motocross field reception area was transformed into a convenience store with an extraordinary atmosphere. The fields of pampas grass and fog created a fantastic atmosphere. The "indescribable feeling of being left behind" that Director Miki felt in Atami in 2000 was the inspiration for the drama "Investigator In Atami.

Director Miki states.

It is no exaggeration to say that part of the film was based on this place."

The location was essential to the film's success. This is no exaggeration. The distance, time, and scheduling problems of rebuilding a motocross circuit made filming difficult. However, these locations were essential in creating this world view. The fog was so thick, we couldn't get the smoke out. If you want to start smoking, you need Hollywood-grade smoke. We thought we could create an extraordinary story in this location. From the first time we found it, the whole atmosphere and music started to align in the same direction. For the interior, I consulted with Tomona Hayashi (art director) and changed it from a regular Japanese convenience store. The music and sound effects are all based on the theme of nostalgia. The wallpaper was also covered with patterns inspired by the 1970s. The wallpaper is very similar to that of a general store in the Mojave Desert in the American Midwest. Seiji Rokkaku plays the role of Nagumo, a convenience store owner. The Atami Investigator," and it is also the location for that film. The area has moved a lot in the past few years, but those days were still before the arrival of foreign tourists to Atami. The Showa period seems to have

ended in this area. It used to be a popular tourist destination. What is Showa-like is the green ornament lights placed on the palm trees.

Set in this area, like "Twin Peaks" (1990-1991)

I thought it might be interesting to create a mystery detective novel.

Sausages taste better when it's cloudy and sunny." "Lying raises your body temperature. Glasses also fog up. ......... Miki uses the word "absurd" throughout all his works. Even in the drama "Jiken Keisatsu (Statute of Limitations Police)," such plausible lines and gags are laid out during the solving of a mystery. Many people may ask the question, "Where does reality end and where does unreality begin?" This question is likely to be debated on the Internet, just as "Investigators in the Sea of Heat" drew a strong response from viewers with its dramatic ending.

Director Miki: I wanted to make a film in which a gag can become a horror story, and vice versa, in which it loses its meaning.

As director of the City Boys, a comedy group formed in 1979 by Makoto Ohtake and Tokitaro, I cut out a large Daruma toy and cut it up. I cut a medium Daruma doll, and then I cut a small Daruma doll. ...... and then a small Daruma came out, and then dried plum seeds came out. I was expecting the small daruma to come out, but by the dried plum seeds coming out, the meaning was lost. So I am trying to end that kind of chain of meaning. Even in "Convenient Story," I dare to break the continuity between reality and others. I don't know if the audience will like that kind of speculative thinking, or if they will resist it if it doesn't add up. But for me, it is a pseudo-experience from the 'I don't know what's going on' world as seen through Kato's eyes. Hopefully, it will be an experience of Kato's world through my eyes. As was the case with "Investigators in the Atami Sea," people try to find meaning when nothing is presented to them. The unspeakable without meaning is frightening. This is the fundamental similarity between horror and comedy. A gag can be a horror, and vice versa.

Lewis Carroll also describes this world. How we interpret nonsense is important. I craft my scripts to carve out thought-provoking conclusions. Sometimes I let the story fall apart, sometimes I put in something strange to confuse the meaning. This is not by accident, not by chance, but by deliberate conviction. "

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Items and characters linked to other works

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Kato and his lover Zigzag (Tomoki Katayama)'s dog Cerberus It is

The appearance of different characters and items in various works is one of Miki's great pleasures.

Shizuka Mikazuki of "Vigilante" fame went to "Tento" in 2007. Endo (Matsuo Suzuki) was a police officer in "Zukan ni nai nai shi" (2007). Go to "Shiteki ni shite ga kareta" (2007). Chupa Chups: "Chupa Chupasan," a lady who licks Eiko Shintani's electric candy in "Investigators in Atami" (2010). Now, "Yes-no Lamp," a mysterious device to judge whether thoughts are good or bad, in "Investigators in Atami" (2010). Also, Cerberus, the guard dog that guards the entrance to the underworld in Greek mythology kept by the heroine's lover in "Convenience Story," is used as a code name for the grandmother in the park in "The Turtle Swims Surprisingly Fast.

Director Miki: She is a woman who uses electric candy.

Both Cerberus and the grandmother have gone to hell. Is there a Mamoru Oshii work called "Cerberus: Hell's Watchdog" (1991)? It often appears in Osamu Tezuka's works (Ham Egg, Acetylene Lamp, Higeoyaji, etc.) and often links his works to each other. In this work, too, there is a woman who eats electric candy, but this character has been around for a long time: when I was writing the script for "Rumo Kohan ni," a local drama for Hokkaido Television Broadcasting in 1995. I used an old lady holding an electric candy. Electric candy was popular at the time, and the original purpose of the script was to show how bizarre and rude it was. In "The Investigator in the Atami Sea," the old lady was eating marble candy. Investigator Hoshizaki (Odagiri Joe) thus gets to the bottom of the matter. It was a way to give meaning to the story and make it more frightening and bizarre itty-bitty.

I made the "yes-no" lamp as a "silly" device because I was curious about a TV show I once saw in which dowsing was used to locate water pipes. (Dowsing was used by Hoshizaki in "The Inspector of Atami" at the criminals' hideout, where he found the entrance to the basement.)

Studio andActress

Kato's lover Zigzag is an actress.

Originally written by Mark Schilling, the plot of "Convenience Story" was changed when Miki wrote the screenplay.

One was the introduction of Kato's lover, Zigzag (Zigzag). Another was the inclusion of actress Tomoki Katayama. She is Kato's lover. This eccentric and important character is quite unique: Kaho played the lead role in the omnibus "Declaration of Emergency," released on Amazon Prime Video in 2020. The film focuses on her strange experience with a mysterious mail package and the circumstances surrounding her audition. Mayu Tsuruta (an actress known as the horror queen of the Heisei era) appears in the fifth episode.

Inspired by director Miki's commentary on such classic films as "Sunset Boulevard" and "Mulholland Drive," the director explains, "The omission of a single finger zigzag is an example from the Yoshiwara (brothels) of the Edo period.

In the Edo period, the custom was to cut off a finger to signify that "you are their only lover. The finger would then be given to various men. There were also some vendors who made fake ones. This is why the zigzag is used as the basis for this unique expression of love. It would have been interesting to have a character who, at the beginning of the film, is unsure of where her body is. The fact that she is on drugs may mean that she is hallucinating ... . It could be a hallucination that Kato and Keiko are seeing (Atsuko Maeda plays a married woman in a mountain convenience store).

In such a situation, Zigzag is necessary as a link to reality. The room where Kato and Zigzag are together should be realistic, but I decided to use an old 16mm lens to create a bizarre effect. To the viewer, one might ask, "Isn't this real? " they might think, "No, this is not real. and confused, and the way the film is shot makes them wonder if this is real. Talking about the actresses. Kaho is a completely different character in "Declaration of Emergency." But the actress who came to the studio

actress from " Sunset Boulevard," "Mulholland Drive," and "8 1/2" (1963 ). ...... It is a fusion of these films. In the play, this zigzag is wearing a wedding dress and is shot from behind while ingesting large quantities of salmon oil.

Instead of salmon roe, they used tapioca. e (laughs)

In Satoshi Miki's "Convenience Story.

What was the true nature of the other world that the main character, Kato, experienced?

......? The most important trigger in life can be found at any moment. What do you think about reality when you write? There are many important lines, such as "What's happening right now?" and "What's going on right now?" eight minutes ago. But the secret to solving this problem may be hidden in the most ordinary scenes and words.