Release Date: December 17, 2011 Length: 82 minutes Director: Tsurauta Norio
Yurina Kumai as Chiemi
Airi Suzuki as Maria
Dori Sakurada as Nobuaki
Maimi Yajima as Reika
Saki Nakajima as Kana
Hitomo Yoshizawa as Yoko
Saki Shimizu as Masami
Miharu Tanaka as Minako
.... and a few others from some H!P groups
If you read the review two days ago for the "Black Angels" film you may recall how I mentioned that these B-movies are usually my favorite kinds of films. Got out of that genre for a while but kind of getting back into it and have been rewarded with two solid watches in a row. Had read a few reviews for this movie and they weren't all that positive which kept me from watching it for so long. Have been getting a bit tired of dramas lately so decided it was time to give this a chance, 80 minutes out of my life isn't that long.
Except for the males parts all of the characters are from various H!P groups, lot of times we don't see too much of them as there were so many quick deaths in this film. The main character is Chimei who is played by Yurina, she's a member of Berryz Kobo plus the other two members of that group are also in the movie.
The setting is a second year high school class at Tamaoka Gakuen school, don't know if it's a real school but there's no town by that name. One night a mysterious and untraceable cellphone message goes out to all of the students in the class. This message is sent by someone named King, he says to obey his orders or to face the consequences. At first these orders are kind of funny or embarrassing, such as a boy to tell the class which girls he likes the most or having a pair of students kiss each other. When the orders have been carried out King sends a message that the execution was confirmed and no punishments will befall anyone.
Soon the orders get a bit too personal and demanding such as when the King orders a boy to touch one of his classmate's breasts. When the pair didn't follow through with his order their existence was wiped away. That put such a scare into the group that when the next order arrived which said for two classmates to have sex with each other the order was followed. That act was by a cute looking student along with the class nerd, that upset her boyfriend to no end and he plotted to exact revenge.
That boy Yahiro didn't have to do any planning to get back at that male who had sex with his girlfriend as the next order granted him the position of King. Yahiro didn't make any orders but wished that other male classmate was dead and before you knew it another sudent has vanished from the class.
One thing to mention is that when a student is eliminated everything about their existence is, all records of them ever being a person are erased. For instance their parents don't even know they had a child, the teacher has never heard of the student plus any photos they appear in their image disappears from it.
These orders and mini games continue on for most of the movie, the class is quickly dwindling as at first there were about 30 students and at about the 2/3 mark of the film only seven were left. In one instance some students felt that if they didn't answer their phone then they couldn't be eliminated for not following an order but the King found out about their plan and about ten were gone in a blink of an eye.
The main two characters have been friends since childhood, those two being Chiemi and Nobuaki. That pair tries to keep everyone form going insane and even try to do things to prevent any punishments but they fail to stop any of the eliminations. Nobuaki is even suspected of being the King by some of the students as one of his plans backfired so badly that a female student jumped to her death. One character not mentioned is a quiet and mysterious female Maria who is played by Airi.
Maria should have been the prime suspect if any student was thought to be the King though she never was but she seemed to have some insight into the history of this game. She uncovered some evidence that the game had been going on for quite a few decades, well before the cellphone era which meant in the older days letters were sent instead of phone calls. One other piece of evidence she discovered was some pics of the old classes that lost in the game, seems as though there was always a student in the class who looked like Nobuaki. Chiemi brought up a good point at that discovery, if all evidence of a person's existence was erased when someone was punished in the game then how why are there photos of those old classes?
Nobuaki bring three students to an old school that's been closed for many decades but is supposed to be the starting point for the curse of the King's Game. Unknown to him though those students knew of the old pics that had a student with his likeness, they tied him up at the school and were about to kill him. However in the nick of time one of the two remaining students at Tamaoka Gakuen were able to send a message to those three students and they were now among those not in existence. Nobuaki was ordered to send a message to three students he didn't like, that other student sent that message in his place saving Nobuaki's life but because he was the person that sent the message that male student was also another victim in the game.
In the finale we're now to down to two students, the friends since childhood Chiemi and Nobuaki. He had done a bit of investigating and what he discovered was that it was true that the same student over the decades had been a part of the class that was chosen to be in the King's Game. However that student wasn't him but Chiemi, this came as a shock to her as she had no idea what he was talking about. Kind of seems her mind has been erased of all past memories and to me there has to be someone higher than her to give her the orders to run this game, that was a point that was never discussed or revealed.
In a so-so ending Chiemi manages to thwart Nobuaki's attempt to kill her and end the curse, he ends up being the one killed leaving Chiemi as the final student alive. Not the final student for long as she disappears which means that no evidence of there ever being a class now exists. We briefly flash forward six months and there's Chiemi in a new class at a new school, looks like the game will continue with yet another class about to enter the world of nonexistence.
Not as good as "Black Angels" but still a solid watch for me. Couple reasons it wasn't quite as good was there were a few unanswered and hard to believe things that kept occurring in the film. How could Chiemi keep sending those text messages to everyone in her class, she usually was in class when those orders arrived. Plus as I mentioned above was there someone else in the game or controlling her? There's no way she could have done the killings or various other things, especially if her memory has been erased.
There were a few other thoughts like the above ones but they didn't take away from the film too much. Think an 8/10 grade would be about right for this movie, of the few other reviews out there this would definitely be it's highest grade but as I've said these kind of B horror films are right up my alley. It's an easy enough film to obtain plus the subs were quite good so if you enjoy low budget horror films with H!P gals then would highly recommend this film, wish there were a few more in this vein with H!P gals. Maybe there are so will do a search for some more as I would think a few have flown under the radar. Have a few more screenshots here but plenty more in the next post, after these pics check out a short trailer for the film.