“Some things are truly strange.”–Father from Visitor Q, preparing to commit an unnatural act
DIRECTED BY: Takashi Miike
FEATURING: Shungiku Uchida, Ken’ichi Endô, Kazushi Watanabe, Jun Mutô, Fujiko
PLOT: Father is a television reporter who was publicly humiliated when he was sodomized on camera by a gang of punks, Mother turns tricks to pay for her heroin habit, teenage Daughter is a runaway prostitute, and Son beats his mom with a riding crop when he’s not being bullied by his schoolmates. One day, a strange man conks Father on the head with a rock and moves in to stay with the family. Thanks to his influence Mother and Father gain confidence in themselves, and the family is drawn together, as corpses pile up in their home.
- Visitor Q was made as part of the “Love Cinema” project, where six independent Japanese filmmakers made direct-to-video movies to explore the possibilities of the ne digital video format.
- According to Miike the film was shot for a mere seven million yen (about $70,000) and completed in one week.
- There are several times in the film where boom mics are visible.
- Miike’s plot owes much to Pier Paolo Pasolini’s Teorema (1968), in which a mysterious, nameless visitor serially seduces members of a wealthy Italian family.
- Besides acting, the multi-talented Shungicu Uchida (“Mother”) is also a manga artist, singer, and writer.
- Visitor Q was one of two winners of the 2010 “reader’s choice” poll asking 366 Weird Movies’ readership to select one film that had been reviewed but passed over for inclusion on the List of the 366 Best Weird Movies ever made.
INDELIBLE IMAGE: In a movie full of shock after shock, it’s the very last image, a scene of perverse family unity, that turns out to be the most affecting and haunting.
WHAT MAKES IT WEIRD: Visitor Q is a baffling parable of perversity. What starts out as a depraved but unhappy family ends up as a homicidal and unified clan, thanks to the intervention of a mysterious, omnipotent stranger who cracks the father on the skull with a rock and teaches the mother to lactate. Along the way, Miike films the family graphically indulging in every act of sexual deviance he can think of, and even makes up some new ones.
Short clip from Visitor Q
COMMENTS: Visitor Q is a confounding, bewildering movie, and not just because of the Continue reading 74. VISITOR Q [Bijitâ Q] (2001)