Greatful Dead

Watch Greatful Dead

"Love is Crazy, Death is Great!"
  • 2015
  • 1 hr 37 min
  • 6.3  (833)

Greatful Dead is a Japanese film from 2013 that tells the story of a lonely and introverted man named Nekosuke who works as a trapping artist. He lures unsuspecting people into his apartment and kills them, later preserving their bodies in his collection. Nekosuke's life changes after he meets a girl named Yuka, who is mentally challenged and becomes his new target. However, as Nekosuke gets to know Yuka, he starts to develop feelings for her and wants to protect her. This leads to a chain of events that moves the narrative forward in unexpected ways.

The film starts with a series of unsettling scenes that establish Nekosuke's character, his modus operandi, and his relationship with his neighbor Yamada. Nekosuke is portrayed as a sad and sickly man who lives in a cluttered and dark apartment, surrounded by stuffed animals and the preserved bodies of his victims. He is seemingly numb to human emotions and only finds pleasure in his traps and his artwork. Yamada, on the other hand, is a cheerful and nosy woman who often invites herself into Nekosuke's apartment and tries to befriend him. Despite her cheerful demeanor, Yamada is also hiding something that makes her a target for Nekosuke's twisted desires.

After Yamada disappears, Nekosuke's routine is interrupted by the arrival of Yuka, a young woman who is mentally challenged and has a childlike demeanor. Yuka is looking for her lost kitten and mistakes Nekosuke's apartment for her own. Initially, Nekosuke tries to dispose of her, but Yuka's innocence and kindness melt his heart, and he becomes protective of her. As the two spend time together, Nekosuke begins to open up and share his tragic backstory, which sheds light on his motivations and psyche. Meanwhile, a detective named Ozawa is investigating Nekosuke's crimes and closes in on him.

Greatful Dead is a slow-burning psychological thriller that uses music, lighting, and camera angles to create a tense and eerie atmosphere. The dialogue is minimal, and the film relies heavily on the actors' facial expressions and body language to convey the characters' thoughts and feelings. Aira delivers a compelling performance as Yuka, capturing the character's childlike wonder and vulnerability with genuine warmth. Itsuji Itao, who plays Nekosuke, brings a subtle mix of menace and pathos to the role, making the character both repulsive and sympathetic.

The film's themes revolve around loneliness, empathy, and redemption. Nekosuke is a man who has isolated himself from society and lost touch with his humanity. He sees people as objects to be collected and manipulated, but Yuka's presence challenges his worldview and makes him confront his inner demons. The scenes between Nekosuke and Yuka are touching and poignant, and the film ultimately delivers a message of hope and compassion.

The cinematography is another highlight of Greatful Dead. The film's visual style is dark and moody, using shadows and contrast to create a sense of claustrophobia and dread. The camera often takes a voyeuristic point of view, peering through keyholes and windows to capture Nekosuke's twisted perspective. The score by Yoko Kanno is also noteworthy, using a mix of electronic and orchestral elements to heighten the film's emotional impact.

In conclusion, Greatful Dead is a must-see for fans of psychological thrillers who appreciate slow-burning plots and nuanced performances. The film manages to create an unsettling and introspective mood that stays with the viewer long after the credits roll. It is a testament to the power of cinema to explore complex themes and emotions through the lens of genre conventions. While not for the faint of heart, Greatful Dead is a rewarding and thought-provoking experience that showcases the talent of its director, Eiji Uchida, and its cast.

Greatful Dead
Greatful Dead doesn't appear to be available from any streaming services.
Add this movie to your Watchlist to get notified when it's available.
  • Release Date
  • Runtime
    1 hr 37 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.3  (833)