Autodidact: self-taught

Nov
02
2012

My Initial Foray into J-Horror

by V. L. Craven


When looking for films featuring goths, I came across a film called, appropriately, Goth,¬†which I really enjoyed. The cinematography is lovely, and the relationship between the leads was right up my street–asexual and based around a shared interest in macabre things.

The film was based on a book by the same name by a Japanese writer named Otsuichi. Knowing books are nearly always better than the films made from them, I picked up the ‘novel’ it was based upon. The word is in quotes because it’s a collection of stories about the aforementioned protagonists in a non-linear fashion.

Dark and warped and great fun (if you’re a little Addams-y around the edges), each tale expands a bit more on the relationship between the teens.

The teens (Morino, and an unnamed boy who is the narrator) attend the same school. There have been a series of grisly murders of late and they’re both fascinated by the details. They stumble upon a notebook that was clearly written by the killer and find the next crime scene before the police do. If they go to the police the killing will stop, which is boring, so they choose not to. Morino begins dressing like the girls who’ve been murdered and is eventually taken.

The second story is about a person who is removing people’s handseople. He’s been obsessed with hands of all types for as long as he can remember. As with the other stories, the p.o.v. alternated between the boy, whose interested in the case, and the person he’s and Morino are looking for.

The third story, is written from the p.o.v. of a dog being trained to fight and kill other dogs for a very good reason. The end is a clever surprise.

The fourth one is focused on Morino’s past and her relationship with her sister. The male protagonist has become intensely interested in the girl at this point and delves into her past, against her wishes.

The next story is about a man who buries people in his backyard, leaving a bamboo shoot in place in order to talk to the current inhabitant. While this is happening, Morino goes missing and the boy tries to find her.

The final story is the one that both ties everything together but also seems the most out-of-place, somehow. It’s about a girl whose sister was gruesomely murdered and she begins receiving recorded messages of her late sister’s last words. The only way she can hear all of the messages is to meet the killer at the place her sister was butchered. Alone.

dun dun DUN

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