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Red Room (1999)

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Movie Connections:
Red Room
> Red Room (1999)
> Red Room 2 (2000)
Genres:
Horror, Sadistic Horror, Sex Horror
Director:
Daisuke Yamanouchi Daisuke Yamanouchi
Starring:
Hiroshi Kitasenju Hiroshi Kitasenju
Sheena Nagamori Sheena Nagamori
Mayumi Ookawa Mayumi Ookawa
Yuuki Tsukamoto Yuuki Tsukamoto

5.2 / 10 - Overall Rating

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How low would you go to win a million dollars? Just how desperate are you for the cash? Desperate enough to enter the Red Room? In this latest and most vicious game show to emerge from the Japanese underground, four contestants (a husband and wife on the edge of divorce, and two sisters) are locked in the Red Room to draw cards in the "king game." Whoever draws the king selects two others to enter a cage where one performs the most outrageous acts upon his or her unlucky victim. The game is played to the death. Survivor takes all, and the losers go home in body bags! --IMDb
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Review by Chad
Added: January 12, 2007
I've always found it sort of ironic that Japan has some of the most draconian censorship laws (for example, pubic hair can't be shown in films - even in hardcore pornography), yet they consistently manage to cross the line of good taste nonetheless. Ever heard of a little series called Guinea Pig? How about the Entrails of a Virgin series? Of course, let's not forget the entire subgenres of alien tentacle rape (and rape in general), lolicon, "snuff" movies, and everything else that would you wouldn't want to be caught purchasing from your local retailer. Taking a lot of inspiration from Guinea Pig, tonight's film certainly hasn't changed my opinion on this subject.

The storyline is very thin, and it's honestly only there to string along the violence and torture. Four people - played by Hiroshi Kitasenju, Sheena Nagamori, Mayumi Ookawa, and Yuuki Tsukamoto - are locked inside a room in order to play "The Kings Game" for a prize of ten million yen. The Kings Game revolves around four playing cards, one of which is marked with a king's crown while the others are numbered, and whoever draws the king card is the winner. By winning a round, you pick two numbers (each of which has been assigned to one of the other players by their having pulled that card) and force them to play the next part of the game, which requires that one player torture the other in an attempt to make them quit and lose their chance at the cash prize. A variety of household items is available to make things more interesting, and what you wind up with is numerous things along the lines of "break this light bulb inside her vagina" and "beat the shit out of her for five minutes." It just gets worse as the movie progresses, and the final act has to be seen to be believed.

I could probably wrap this review up right now with little to no complaints from the readers; after all, the synopsis that I just spelled out should tell you everything that you need to know when it comes to this title, as it'll either sound like a must-have or a piece of trash depending on your taste in film. Whatever your opinion of it is after reading that outline is probably close to what you'll think after the credits start to roll: if you're in the market to see some nasty, vile acts of depravity from one person onto another, then you'll love this. If you're in the mood for a high-art, plot-oriented horror film, then you'll hate it. Simple enough, right?

Now, I fully knew what I was getting into when I picked this up, so I don't think that it's necessary to point out my personal opinion on this type of film. It's certainly not for everyone and it's not something that I'd want to watch on a daily basis, but senseless violence of a horrific nature is definitely something that I can manage to squeeze into my reviewing schedule every now and again. It works out fairly well in this underground classic, thanks to the inventive methods of torture that they use and the rather nasty imagery that is displayed as a result. It's not quite as realistic as the better offerings from the Guinea Pig series, but it's effective enough that most viewers won't complain.

This film sets out to disgust and shock the viewers, and while it's far from the most repulsive thing that I've ever seen, it does do a good job of accomplishing its goals. The grand finale is especially interesting: I won't spoil it, but I will say that you probably won't see something like that in any other movie. If this sort of movie sounds like something you'd enjoy, then you probably will. I sure did. 8/10.
Recommended Movies
Red Room 2 Splatter: Naked Blood Tumbling Doll Of Flesh American Guinea Pig: Bouquet Of Guts And Gore Assault! Jack The Ripper
Corpse Prison: Part Two Star Of David: Hunting For Beautiful Girls Torment Entrails Of A Beautiful Woman Corpse Prison: Part One
Entrails Of A Virgin Deep Web XXX Bonesaw Grimewave I Spit On Your Grave
Edd #1: Edd - added 01/14/2007, 09:58 PM
Not only did you mention Lolicon, but this movie is disgustingly good. They certainly cross that "moral" line many times here. I say, rated against most other mainstream J-horror films, this one feels more complete, and certainly had good, non-confusing elements and subtitles.
grain of sand #2: grain of sand - added 02/27/2008, 05:17 PM
just netflixed this little beauty.. that lightbulb scenario! wow!
Cryptorchild #3: Cryptorchild - added 06/15/2008, 04:52 PM
I think the shock value is the only thing this film has going. I thought that overall, the movie was really bad. It basically had no story, the lighting was annoying and the subtitles were extremely hard to read. Other than the messed up 'torture' scenes, I wasn't too impressed with this. I think this is a really good review, I just differ on the overall opinion. It's really just a matter of taste though.
Tristan #4: Tristan - added 07/31/2008, 02:29 PM
Loved this just as much as Chadders up there. That lightbulb scene was fantastic, as was the rest of the later stunts. 9/10 from myself as well.
Ginose #5: Ginose - added 09/05/2010, 02:56 PM
Meh. I can't say I was anywhere NEAR as impressed as Chad and the boys, but I thought it was decent. None of the stunts or shock moments were all that great and the ending was just kind of boringly predictable. (My lady mentioned a good bit of factual error: Having to do with the ending, and how, technically, the winner had already lost.) Overall, I would watch it again, but I didn't enjoy it anywhere near as much as the second.
5.5/10
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