Cold Fish

11/18/2017 10:29

Film: Cold Fish (Tsumetai nettaigyo)

Year: 2010

Director: Sion Sono

Writer: Sion Sono and Yoshiki Takahashi

Starring: Mitsuru Fukikoshi, Denden and Asuka Kurosawa



This film begins informing us that this based on a true story. We then see a woman grabbing some things from the store. She is played by Megumi Kagurazaka. She then goes home and starts dinner. Everything that she makes is from the microwave. We then see that she is married to Mitsuru Fukikoshi. He has a daughter who is a teenager, played by Hikari Kajiwara. We learn later that Fukikoshi’s first wife passed away and Kagurazaka is the younger stepmother to Kajiwara. The daughter is currently rebelling and leaves with her boyfriend.

We see from their interactions that Kagurazaka is unhappy and Fukikoshi is too quiet to do anything. It is raining and Kagurazaka sneaks off to have a cigarette. Fukikoshi gets a call that his daughter has been caught shoplifting. Fukikoshi runs a pet shop that specializes in fish. The married couple goes off into the night to the store that is detaining his daughter. Before they do, Fukikoshi finds Kagurazaka smoking, but doesn’t say anything. He pretends not to notice and calls her name, allowing her to pretend like he didn’t see it.

They go to the store and the man who caught her is going off. He wants to prosecute and call the police. Another man comes into the room though. He is played by Denden. He calms the man down and then invites the family to his pet shop, which also specializes in rare fish. The family is grateful and takes him up on his offer. It changes their lives completely.

Denden offers to give Kajiwara a job and have her stay at the shop like the rest of the girls he has working for him. Fukikoshi doesn’t say a whole lot about it, but Kajiwara really wants to do it. Denden is married to Asuka Kurosawa. Denden has Fukikoshi go on home and has Kagurazaka stay behind. He comes on to her roughly and she resists at first. They end up having sex on the floor of his office. He then returns her home, where she shows she enjoyed their interaction. While there, he tells Fukikoshi to come back to his shop. He declines at first, but Kagurazaka explains to him that he has a business opportunity.

Fukikoshi relents and goes back. There he sees his daughter who blows him off. He goes into the office to find Denden, Kurosawa, their legal counsel, who is played by Tetsu Watanabe, and another man. We learn later that he has Yazuka ties. They are talking business about going in together to purchase two rare fish, which Denden already has, and then to breed them. He claims that each fish will sell for 10 million yen. Fukikoshi was brought in to convince this man to buy into this opportunity. Fukikoshi thinks he is being asked to pay in as well, but he is there to take care of the fish since Denden thinks he is the best.

A much darker thing happens though. The man is murdered and Fukikoshi is forced to help Denden and Kurosawa get his body into a car. Fukikoshi then drives them to a shack on a nearby mountain where they dispose of the body. The man’s watch is given to Fukikoshi. He doesn’t know if he wants to get mixed up in this, but no matter what happens, he gets pulled into it. This will lead into more murder and backstabbing, as well as the cops. Can Fukikoshi get out of this with his family or will they fall victim to this psychotic man?

I came in viewing this film due to a podcast and a movie challenge. I didn’t know much about it other than it stated to be based on a true story. I did see that it is loosely based on couple that did murder people, but this story of the film is mostly fictional. My favorite part of the story though is Fukikoshi and his character. He starts off as a timid man and he is pushed farther and farther until he finally snaps. I loved this turn in character for him. I was actually surprised how the film ended though, but it didn’t bother me. Any ending that isn’t Hollywood or happy, I’m a big fan of. The atrocities they commit are crazy to see as well.

The acting for this film is really good. Fukikoshi plays the role great. He was very timid in the beginning and I believed it. As you see him getting pushed and pulled each way, you see him starting to break and I loved it. The way he snapped and what happened seemed very believable. Denden was great as well. He was so happy and then you see the horrible acts he performs. It is a great look at the character you portray to the public and can hide a monster like this behind closed doors. The rest of the cast also helps support these two.

The effects of this film were good. The gore looked real and it was quite gross at times. Seeing Denden and Kurosawa covered in blood as they are trying to make people to disappear was interesting to see. I believe the effects were all practical and were very well done. The editing of the film was good to me as well. The film runs a little over two hours and it really didn’t feel like it. Things happen in a whirlwind, yet it works. There are parts that let breathe for a second before craziness starts up again. I thought the score of the film was good. It doesn’t stand out, but it also doesn’t hurt the film either.

I would recommend this film. I thought the story was quite interesting in that you have a timid man who is losing his family, but in turn loses everything as he things a man with more money than him tries to help him. It is great to see Fukikoshi pushed to the edge and losing control. Denden is a psychopath that hides it well which was something else that was great to see. The effects of the film look realistic and I was a big fan. The editing of the film was well done. The score didn’t stand out, but it also doesn’t hurt it. Now I will warn you that this film is from Japan and I had to watch it with subtitles. If that is a problem, avoid this. If not, I definitely think this film is good and worth a viewing.


My Rating: 8 out of 10