Tuesday, December 03, 2013

JFF 2013: The Devil's Path / Kyouaku

I can't really make up my mind about The Devil's Path. The movie starts off with this yakuza Sudo doing bad things to a few people before he gets captured. One day, reporter Fuji played by Yamada Takayuki receives a letter from Sudo who is one death row. Sudo claims to have commited even more murders for this person called 'Sensei' who is living large while Sudo is awaiting death.

Fuji starts investigating Sudo's claims and this sensei person played awesomely by Lily Franky aka the bad old dude from Moteki. Never realised what his name was until I noticed the name at the credits of this movie despite having seen his work many times. I didn't see no caucasian lady in this movie. The more Fuji investigates, the more we see what Sensei's plans were and be prepared for a morbid movie about people's ability to do evil.

Performances are great especially Lily Franky as sensei and Ikewaki Chizuru too brief appearances as Fuji's wife who has to deal with his elderly mother while Fuji obsesses with the case. The movie feels too long but I never felt bored. It just never brought me to the edge of my seat. Probably because the whole movie can be reduced to a scam and while there may be deeper themes The Devil's Path wants to explore like treatment of the elderly and righteous indignation of others' sins at the expense of one's own, its only skin deep.

The Devil's Path wasn't the gripping dark movie I was hoping but I didn't mind it. Morbidly watchable.

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