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Focus (1996)

7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 145 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 6 critic

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Title: Focus (1996)

Focus (1996) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Kanemura
Keiko Unno ...
Yoko
Akira Hirai ...
Iwai
Tetsuo Sano
Ikko Suzuki
Atsuo Nakata
Suki Tadaka
Yoshihiro Ono
Takeyuki Hirano
Hisami Saito
Kentaro Kawae
Gosuke Seto
Mikio Ryumoto
Wakako Matsuzaka
Akiko Hamada
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Plot Keywords:

wiretap | tv reporter | sex | nerd | murder | See All (9) »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

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Release Date:

12 October 1996 (Japan)  »

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1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

a powerful media commentary
1 July 2002 | by (Chiba, Japan) – See all my reviews

A short (72 minutes), direct and to-the-point media-commentary thriller. A sleazy TV producer trying to exploit a quiet otaku (an obsessive hobbyist) whose hobby is electronic eavesdropping ends up getting a lot more than he bargained for when they eavesdrop on the wrong conversation and he prods said otaku into helping him "investigate" the lead, only to find out that some things (and people) are not always as they seem, when a minor altercation causes things to take a rather nasty turn....

In a relatively quiet, but brutally direct way, this movie is an excellent criticism of the trend towards "reality shows" and "reality news," and how both tend to sensationalize violence and danger and exploit ordinary people in the service of "entertainment."

Adding to its power and feel of authenticity is the fact that it was shot entirely from the perspective of the cinematographer, who also plays the occasionally heard (but never seen) camera man. No sensationalizing; just a brilliant, powerful movie.

Excellent performances all around, but a special mention for Tadanobu Asano, who gives an outstanding performance as the beleaguered otaku, and demonstrates why he is one of Japan's best and most sought-after actors.

The subtitled (Region 2) DVD release is not widescreen, but considering the premise and perspective, the original probably wasn't and shouldn't've been.


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