Survive Style 5+ (2004)

Run Time - 120 min.  |   Countries - Japan   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Josh Ralske

Director Gen Sekiguchi and screenwriter Taku Tada, phenomenally successful award winners in Japan's advertising industry, make their feature-film debut with the fast-paced omnibus film, Survive Style 5+, which incorporates five strange tales that occasionally intersect. The ubiquitous Tadanobu Asano introduces the film, playing a man who has apparently just murdered his lovely wife (Reika Hashimoto). He drives out to the woods, buries the body, and returns home to find her waiting for him, and not in a particularly good mood. In the second story, Yoko (Ky├┤ko Koizumi), a driven copywriter who constantly spews ad ideas into her handy minicassette recorder, has just had quick, unfulfilling sex with Aoyama (Hiroshi Abe), a sleazy, conceited TV hypnotist who proceeds to insult her work and her personal hygiene. Yoko takes it well, but she's got plans for the jerk. In the third story, Kobayashi (Ittoku Kishibe), a good-natured salaryman, is hypnotized by Aoyama into believing he's a bird. His family has a whole new set of problems when Aoyama is incapacitated before he can break the trance. The fourth thread follows three dimwitted burglars (Yoshiyuki Morishita, Jai West, and Kanji Tsuda) as they grapple with both professional and sexual confusion. The final plotline concerns a hot-tempered English hitman (Vinnie Jones) and his goofy employer (Yoshiyoshi Arakawa), who also serves as his translator as the hitman asks nearly everyone he meets, "What is your function on this planet?" Sonny Chiba has a cameo as the hen-pecked president of a drug company. Survive Style 5+ was shown at Subway Cinema's New York Asian Film Festival in 2005.