The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]

The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]

The Crazy Family (1984)
DVD5 | IMG | PAL 16:9 | 01:42:20 | 3,97 Gb
Audio: Japanese AC3 1.0 @ 192 Kbps | Subs: English
Genre: Black Comedy

Director: Gakury├╗ Ishii (as Sogo Ishii)
Stars: Katsuya Kobayashi, Mitsuko Baish├┤, Yoshiki Arizono

The Kobayashi family finally get the chance to move out of their tiny, cramped Tokyo apartment in favour of the suburban house of their dreams. But all is not well: the house is infested by termites and the family starts cracking up: Son Masaki is studying so obsessively for his exams that he's losing his mind; daughter Erika is oblivious of all but her forthcoming record company audition, grandfather Yasukuni starts getting World War II flashbacks and father Katsuhiko is so worried about his family's "sickness" that he thinks can only be cured by group suicide…


The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]

Not many people caught this pitch-black comedy when it was released in the United States – no surprise since its New York City engagement consisted of a one-week run at an upscale arthouse theatre, and a sparse, thoroughly confused audience of blue-haired Upper West Siders. Though still unavailable on video, I'd like to give it my vote as one of the most genuinely demented movies to ever emerge from Japan. And that's saying a LOT!

The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]

Directed by Sogo Ishii (ANGEL DUST), this was his first (and as of yet, only) feature film to be picked up by an American distributor. Mixing sledgehammer social satire with rapid-fire cinematic dementia, this is an unforgettable excursion into the darkest recesses of his culture's middle-class values, as well as a precursor to such '90s cult hits as TETSUO: THE IRON MAN. Vicious and unrelenting, THE CRAZY FAMILY focuses on the outwardly-sane Kobayashi family. They're an Asian bourgeois wet dream, complete with a successful dad, a loving wife, and two well-adjusted children.

The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]

To top it off, they've just moved into their suburban dream home. Sounds perfect? Not for long. Because soon their unwanted grandfather moves in, white ants are discovered feasting on the woodwork, tempers begin to percolate, and the family's oft-mentioned "sickness" takes over, which sends our happy Nuclear Unit spinning headfirst into a series of comic obsessions. Father begins digging up the floorboards and spreading toxic bug poison; the straight-laced mother does an impromptu striptease for her ever-more-paranoid hubbie; and the daughter practices for her unlikely pop star career.

The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]

Meanwhile, the son crams for his Tokyo University entrance exams by turning his room into a high-tech nightmare, complete with electrodes, glowing pyramids, and a handy knife which he stabs himself with in order to stay awake. The household hostilities escalate and soon the place becomes a full-scale battlefield – the family armed with mothballed World War II weapons, a chainsaw, even a baseball bat with the family dog strapped to it. Gramps goes so far off the deep end that he takes his pre-pubescent granddaughter hostage and threatens to rape her. In between the various fires and explosions, Ishii makes scathingly hilarious points about life in modern-day Japan, where socially-programmed perfection and technological advances have taken their toll on a new generation.

The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]

Imagine a movie that begins like FATHER KNOWS BEST, turns into a mass-hysteria mix of THE SHINING meet THE SIMPSONS, and is edited like a Road Runner cartoon on L.S.D., and you have THE CRAZY FAMILY. So if you can laugh at the notion of a father trying to murder his entire family by shoving a coffeepot full of liquid ant poison into their faces and urging them to drink, then you'll have no trouble appreciating its distinct brand of mutant-age humor. I admit I probably missed some of the deeper social implications of the work, but I was thoroughly impressed by Ishii's technical wizardry, as well as the entire tone of this wild, flamboyant and extremely sadistic comedy.

The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]

I've wanted to see "The Crazy Family" ever since reading about it in Shock Cinema. After finally being able to track it down, I can honestly say it didn't disappoint me. "The Crazy Family" has to be one of the most berserk screen satires I've ever seen. I think I missed a lot of the deeper social implications and attacks on Japanese family life, as its a culture I am largely unfamiliar with. Fortunately, a lot of the humor is absolutely hilarious anyways, albeit in a very dark and even surreal manner. The jokes include, but are not limited to, Nazism, incest, and a lot of insanity.

The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]

Past the humor, the film is remarkably well made. Considering the fact its a low budget production (and very much a predecessor to the Japanese New Wave cinema of Takashi Miike and Shinya Tsukamoto), its editing is amazing. The rapid and quick cuts achieve a hypnotic style, not so much quickly paced and being able to capture the frenzy of the situation. The pacing is very good as well, as the situations just continue to become worse as the film continues. This is the classic "things just get worse" style of sitcom humor taken to its most surreal extreme. "The Crazy Family" is an absolutely unique film which needs a much larger audience. Its easily the closest Sogo Ishii has came to creating a masterpiece.
IMDB Reviewer

The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]
The Crazy Family (1984) [ReUP]

Special Features: None on the source and menu removed as well.

No More Mirrors, Please.