The Chasing World (2008)

Genres - Science Fiction, Thriller  |   Run Time - 98 min.  |   Countries - Japan   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Director Issei Shibata delivers this adrenalin-fueled thriller about a rash of murders all involving people with the surname "Sato," and a desperate high school student with that name who becomes trapped in a parallel world while being forced to participate in a lethal game of tag. All across Japan, people with the last name "Sato" are perishing in bizarre accidents, dying freakish deaths, or simply taking their own lives. Though distracted high school student Tsubasa Sato is too busy tending to his catatonic sister in the hospital and attempting to get through to his alcoholic father to take note of the trend, the Sato curse seems to strike him hard when, after engaging in a fight with a vicious gangster, he awakens in a parallel world where everything - and everyone - are just slightly different than they used to be. In this world, a masked King occupies an enormous tower in the center of the city, and he's decreed a public game of tag in which anyone named "Sato" is targeted for death by his legion of hooded minions. With the city sirens sound, the onigokko (chasing game) is on. Anyone who successfully eludes the pursuers for a few hours each day of the week is to be granted any wish they want. Luckily, Tsubasa excels at chasing games, and before long he's discovered a curious link between this parallel world and his former reality: when a contestant is killed in the parallel world, his counterpart in the real world perishes as well. Now, as the siren sounds and the chase begins, Tsubasa hits the ground running in hopes of reaching his sister before the army of masked killers do.