I’ve never seen The Quiet Family, Jee-woon Kim’s 1998 horror/comedy film that inspired Takashi Miike’s oddball 2001 “remake” The Happiness of the Katakuris. But I’m going to track the original down one of these days just to see how that film inspired Miike to make one of the more out there genre films of the previous decade.
While its not anywhere close to perfect, a bit too long and not even a tiny bit frightening, it’s certainly somewhat gleefully disturbing thanks to the cheery performances by the main cast and the black comedy revolving around the mostly accidental deaths that occur in and around the family’s small, out of the way mountain inn. The Katakuris bizarre mix of live action, wild stop motion animation, mild gore and full-on musical numbers make it a knockout flick worth repeat viewings provided you like what’s here. Miike, known for more his prolific output in multiple genres as well as some truly memorable extreme films (Audition, Ichi The Killer, Gozu) infuses The Katakuris with his trademarks and adds a decidedly Japanese sense of “no matter what!” spirit that gets the family through its assorted misadventures. Continue reading