One Missed Call (2003) Poster

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A well made horror, courtesy of Miike Takashi.
Akira-3611 July 2005
Most Japanese movies are considered as low-budget compared to their Hollywood counterparts. This is because their production costs are so high. However this factor does not deter Japanese creative production teams to come up with movie gems, in different genres.

In the realm of Japanese horrors for example, a studio working with a limited budget has to resort to Jaws-style direction, in which you hardly see or visualise the ghosts/monsters.

And it is through the movie's simplicity, or by not showing/explaining too much, that J-horrors have turned up the notch on the haunting and horror levels through movies such as Ring and Dark Water. Of course there are the still plenty of gorefest movies such as Suicide Circles and Ichi the Killer, the latter being a courtesy of that notorious but prolific J-director, Takashi Miike.

So it is remarkable and truly rewarding to see how Miike toned down his tastes for the twisted and perverted in One Missed Call. Furthermore he implemented his flair of storytelling through symbolisms and graphic metaphors quite nicely. Any shock/gore elements were used in such a way that they serve the movie, instead of downgrading it to a cheesy flick.

In conclusion, One Missed Call satisfies on many levels, providing you keep an open mind and just enjoy the ride. Another plus of the movie is the appearances of several gorgeous J-idols, such as Kazue Fukishii and Kou Shibasaki. Nifty!
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a very great "grudge" movie for Asian horror fans
gizoune75 December 2004
i read a lot of bad reviews about this fantastic movie, so i watched it without even expecting something good.Of course i was positively surprised,the actors are very good : very few American actress knows how to express pure terror on they're faces as well as a Japanese actress.Miike success in creating an intense and creepy mood that follows you all the way till the end credits.

o.k. so the story is not very original,if you have seen Ju-on, Ringu or Dark water there is nothing new here. it's another Japanese movie with a "grudge" (grudge: curse that happens when someone "most of the times a girl" dies in a tragic or horrible death,then the girl return from the dead to kill,usually grudges have long dark hair covering they're faces) but the ghost or grudge in "one missed call" is a lot more scary than Sadako in ringu or even the one in ju-on and there is a lot of murders going on from the beginning to the end. It's definitely not slow paced like dark water and a lot more entertaining.

But if your like me, when you watch a zombie movie you expect zombies,if you watch a killer movie you expect killings so if you watch a Japanese horror movie expect a grudge cause it's a part of the Japanese mythology so don't go crying out loud that this movie sucks because it's a pale imitation of ringu and ju-on, IT IS NOT!!!!

so, i give this movie 10/10 for three reason: 1: a lot of good scares 2: a very effective and disgusting grudge 3: entertaining from opening credits to the end
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A fun ride into Miike's more commercial world
melvin-1819 March 2004
It is hard to do something new in the world of horror these days. Even Japanese horrors which were deemed fresh in the late 90's got more and more repetitive, and we can say that after Kairo, there is nothing really fresh coming out of the horror department of Japanese films. The quiet atmosphere and the fear towards darkness within colorless world possessed by vicious female ghosts is no longer new to both Japan and the rest of the world. Ju-ons (all of them except the part 2 of the one made only for video which sucked badly) are scary; the series break the silent rule of Japanese horrors, its director even say that he tried to go the opposite way Nakata and Kurosawa went, he will scare the audience by showing the ghosts and gore as much as possible. And Ju-ons worked, to some extent; the director is successful in creating the world of nightmare that co-exist with the ordinary world that people live in. He use a normal house/apartment as his stage of fear and bring out all the every possible scare out of every corner of that place. But one can also say that Ju-ons are good only in parts; its strength is just the sum of a few very scary scenes that the director successfully created and not the overall atmosphere or the story of the films. Now it's time for the ever creative Miike who once scared the hell out of the audience, not by using ghosts, but using a sadistic but innocent-looking girl, to put some new blood into Japanese horrors. As a big fan of J-horror and Miike, I was so looking forward to the film and that I was afraid my high expectation will kill it, but the result was beyond my expectation, I enjoyed this thrill ride so much I wish it would never end.

In terms of story, Chakushin Ari is nothing new. It's the Ring plus mobile phone plus Miike trademark's world of weirdness. However, it's execution is a very good blend of Nakata's the silent and dark world and Simizu's bang bang ghost is coming style, and the result, IMHO, is very fresh and satisfying. Miike has toned down his weird and over-the-top scenes to suit the taste of wider audiences, but this film is still full of creative and scary scenes (the scene at the TV station which I deem so good it's classic, and the scene at the hospital which is so weird and spooky that I wish it could last longer) with quite satisfying story and (many may argue) acceptable open ending. Although his ingredients are nonetheless recycle of old tricks (everything from dark corners, female ghosts, old apartments, old hospitals, scary-as-hell sound effects, and right out of the screen gore and ghosts), they are orchestrated in such a stylish and enjoyable way that I can't help jumping and flinching while at the same time enjoying the ever rushing adrenalin in my vein. Repetitive, may be, but fresh ideas are still everywhere; Miike stood very good balance between Nakata's atmospheric scare/strong story and Shimizu illogically outrageous and bizarre world. In sum, a very very entertaining grade A pure horror (not psychological thriller in disguise) which is both repetitive and fresh at the same time. This film should satisfied both hardcore horror fans and those who want satisfying entertainment.
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A stylish addition to Miike's portfolio
DVD_Connoisseur31 December 2006
After "Audition" and "Ichi The Killer", I had great expectations for this movie. What it delivers is essentially the "greatest hits" of Asian horror. There's more than a passing resemblance to "The Ring", with bits of "Ju-On" and other films thrown in for good measure.

The film revolves around mobile 'phones. A girl has a message left on her mobile 'phone answering service - only it's been left by herself and in the future! To make matters worse, it ends with a blood curdling scream! Well, it soon turns out that the message is the girl's final words on this mortal coil.

The girl is not alone. It's only a matter of time before the body count starts rising and a race against time begins to solve the mystery of the bizarre calls.

Despite being more than a shade Ringu-clone-esquire, I heartily enjoyed this film. It has some great set-pieces (including a memorable death), some spooky moments, a few "jump" sequences, etc. What the film didn't deliver, though, was any real fear. It was a case of "seen it all before" (a criticism that some levelled at "Ju-On").

The plot unravels in a logical manner and there's a decent pay off. It may not be a future classic, but this is a very well made example of Asian horror cinema.

My rating: 8 out of 10 for a stylish addition to Miike's portfolio
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Chakushin ari is another ghost tale but it gets a bit special when Miike-san is in charge of things.
scobbah17 March 2006
First, I strongly disagree with some other posters at the board who weren't bothered by Chakushin ari facing a Hollywood remake. Why can't Hollywood keep their dirty fingers away when they fail in their own miserable creativity. Anyhow...

I've just started to dig deeper into the works of Takashi Miike and I have no problems admitting that his movies are awesome. Chakushin ari is another ghost tale but it gets a bit special when Miike-san is in charge of things. What you get in Chakushin ari is, besides the beautiful surroundings and awesome camera work, tension, thrills and a plot which does quite good for being in this genre. It has its moments of originality and compared to the works of Hideo Nakata, I'd say Miike here accomplish a heavier load of tension throughout the whole movie, while Nakata's movies have tension coming in waves, sort of.

I have really nothing to whine about here or rant at. The actors are doing a good job and the piece kept me interested throughout the entire playtime. Thumbs up.
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Good Japanese horror movie
barteknl13 October 2004
A good Japanese-surprise.

Was looking for something different to watch in Americanized Netherlands, and found this movie. If you have never seen any of the recent Japanese fear movies, then this one is a good compilation of the others (Ring, Dark Water, Kairo...) : strange camera angles, blurry pictures, good sound effects and music and a nice-and-somewhat logical script. I was worried about the Miike's touch, but in fact it was a surprising plus for this kind of movie, where ghosts and gore combine well. Takashi shows he knows a lot about filming methods, and also gives us an overview of the Japanese craziness about mobile phones : I can assure you that you will never look again the same way at your phone after seeing such a movie.

For the ones who have seen other Japanese horror movies, I would advise it as well, as you enjoy seeing again the same old tricks in a different context...and it works again !

So if you have the chance to have this one in a nearby theater...just try it !!
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"Hello, it's you here. You'll die in a couple of days. You are me... and I'll be dead in just a few seconds"
Vomitron_G14 December 2006
Well, what can I say? Takashi Miike's take on the whole so-called J-horror hoopla. I bet he was thinking "I can do this too. And I can do it better". And you know what? He was right! RINGU can be considered as the original one that started it all (because of being the first big hit in the genre, for one thing). I'm not even gonna argue about whether it's the best J-horror movie or not. But I am gonna say that ONE MISSED CALL is without a doubt, on some levels, more effective than RINGU. Where Sadako's ghostly tale of terror was sort of touching the boundaries and establishing some clearly defined characteristics of the genre, CHAKUSHIN ARI pushes the boundaries and uses these characteristics as a reference to the genre.

Miike handles a very tight script and a plot that has virtually no holes and a lot of eye for details. Almost every little aspect that is being mentioned in the plot, carries a little set-up within that delivers a pay-off later. The story is intriguing. The death scenes are original and rather graphic. The ghostly creepiness is there. Every jump-scare works (there was one were I almost went through the roof! I recommend watching this with the sound turned up a notch; just let it blast out of the speakers, and I guarantee you: you will jump!). The conclusion is great and practically unpredictable; the twists were damn good. And then there's Miike, who just once again had to give this movie that Miike-touch of his, making it all just one bit more special in a way. And this time, surprisingly, he doesn't do it in the usual way. Not be inserting a sickening scene, or adding some repulsive imagery (though some events and effects really are quite gruesome). No. This time he does it by taking the movie to a different level, by adding that very last scene. And the very last shot should normally have you thinking about something that someone in a very brief scene said, earlier in the movie. The effect it had on me was: wanting to re-watch the movie. Now that's just great if a movie manages to do that. So maybe I should really rate this one 10/10. But I'll reserve that rating for THE AUDITION, my favorite Takashi Miike film ever (for now, at least).

And, by the way: I'm ready for the re-make. It's gonna be directed by Frenchman Eric Valette, who previously directed the magnificent, claustrophobic & Lovecraftian-like MALÉFIQUE. For once, I just might have a little faith in an upcoming re-make.
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Miike's best since Ichi the Killer.
Delly17 May 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I've noticed that B-grade horror directors always try to scare us with otherworldly visitors, plate-throwing spooks, etc. but, as Kubrick wondered, why be afraid of ghosts? It's proof of life beyond death! This is why A-grade directors like Kubrick, Dreyer, Miike, Hitchcock, and Shymalan, realize that the true horror is existence itself, incomprehensible in its mortality, its suffering, its hopelessness. We all die; therefore, WE are the ghosts. It's the same kind of reversal you see in that Casper short where he meets a living human child and screams, the same way the boy screamed upon seeing him.

In One Missed Call, Miike quietly confesses to a deep, profound spirituality that was only apparent beforehand in his obvious contempt for everything and everyone who lacks Buddhist poise ( and the only character who even had that was Grandpa in Happiness of the Katakuris: "Yeah!" ) The movie is split into two parts. The first is a parodistic one involving lots of cell phones and tropes from The Ring, Ju-On, and other recent J-horror movies. I admit this phenomenon never made any sense to me, it was just visual noise based on memories of Poltergeist and Japanese folk tales. But Miike, who makes movies the way other people write 800-page books of philosophy, converts pop-culture dross into Renaissance-art gold, drawing out and savoring the connection, only hinted at in The Ring, between the way technology gives us the illusion of having superhuman capabilities ( talk to anyone on earth, at any time of the day! send them a video of yourself doing jumping jacks naked! ) but fails outright to protect us from the inevitable: death. You know that dread you feel when your Internet connection breaks down and you're "cut off from the world"? Miike exploits this modern fear to the limit in the greatest horror scene since the one in the shower, or 9-11 itself -- I'm talking about the very public death of Natsumi Konishi.

The second half of the movie tracks the heroine as she tries to locate the source of the malevolent phone calls who are picking off her friends left and right, hoping to escape the same fate. Her journey eventually takes her to a disused hospital, where the film's second great scene takes place, as death reaches out to life, as the departed try to close the gap between them and us. Those expecting to be "scared" won't be; others who know how to watch films without expectations, and may have seen Ordet or Vampyr, will find this scene to be curiously sorrowful and moving unlike anything they've seen before. The movie would have been a classic if it had ended here, but Miike, as he always does, spins out his concept to dizzying, unimaginable lengths, as the movie begins to concentrate more on its hero, Hiroshi, who seems to embody a very Christian kind of ethos: "When knighthood was in flower" and all of that, like Orlando Bloom in Kingdom of Heaven. I won't spoil the ending, but as he discovers, the "ghost" turns out to be a variant of Ichi, from Ichi the Killer, a destructive innocent, and it's the hero's sympathy, his capacity for loving the unlovable, that not only saves his life but wins him eternal love and eternal childhood -- the symbol for which is the candy that he rolls about in his mouth in the final shot.

No point in complaining that One Missed Call is too mainstream. Like so many other crossover movies, from Gangs of New York to Lovers on the Bridge, future generations will discover that genuine subversion resides in the collision between mainstream values and the truth; in fact, that collision IS the truth: Independent purity duking it out with the world, rather than sitting in its iron lung, all spotless and lily-white. Who wants to see a movie where the director rigs his own little belief system, his own critics, his own executioners? Every indie director, if he wants to be a great director, needs to make a large-budget film, needs to expose himself to the incomprehension and disappointment of critics, who are, though it's not often said, more of a threat to progress than the masses. Miike must find their disappointment, like that of the sadistic fanboys, proof that his quest is a true one.
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ONE MISSED CALL is an unsettling horror film with lots of scares by the cult director Takashi Mike
ma-cortes12 January 2007
A high school student named Yumi Kamura finds with a group friends in a coffee bar,while her pal Yoko receives a cellular call with a rare tone which she had heard before.Into screen phone appears one missed call.The message is sent for her cellular and contains a horrible shout that sounds like her voice.Besides the call is from three days after.A time later young people receive the call are dead for terrible killing.A strange curse causes a criminal rampage among various adolescents.

The picture gets suspense,horror,shocks,grisly terror and several eerie scenes.The film displays hair-rising and horrifying images with a bit of blood and graphical gore.Mysterious and sinister atmosphere is well made by the photographer Yamamamoto. Takashi Mike(Ichi the killer) direction sometimes is actually creepy and frightening like proves the first entry ¨Dead or alive¨with the execution starring by a mobster and much more in ¨The audition¨.This horror film is inspired by ¨The ring¨with certain remembrance more even storyline coincidences.Like that and in fact happen in the most part of recently Japan horror cinema deals about an urban legend.It's the initial argument for introducing the terror in the ordinary life by means a phone.While the look is suitable spooky and eerie the plot spread to the breaking point and the final resolution results to be a little confused.The flick will like to Japan modern terror cinema enthusiastic.
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The Call from Death
Claudio Carvalho23 August 2008
While in a bar with her friends, the teenager Yoko Okazaki (Anna Nagata) receives a call in her cellular with a voice mail from the future telling the date and time when she would die. On the next day, Yumi overhears a group of students talking about the urban legend that people connected in the address book of cellular are mysteriously receiving phone calls with date and time of their death in the near future. In the precise informed hour, Yoko is attacked by a supernatural force in a train station while talking to her friend Yumi Nakamura (Kou Shibasaki) by phone and dies with severed arm and leg. Yumi seeks out Kioto's boyfriend Kenji Kawai (Atsushi Ida), who also received a call, and witnesses his death in an elevator shaft. When her roommate Natsumi Konishi (Kazue Fukiishi) receives a call, Yoko befriends Hiroshi Yamashita (Shin'ichi Tsutsumi), who tells her that his sister Ritsuko (Azusa) that worked in the Child Guidance Center with abused children was the first victim of the phone call. While in the hospital, Yumi hears an asthma pump and recalls that she heard the same noise when Kenji died. They decide to investigate victims of asthma in the hospital and find the name of Marie Mizunuma and her daughters Mimiko and Nanako. They search the family together trying to save Natsumi from her fate.

"Chakushin Ari" is scary like most of the Asian horror movies, and has a promising beginning supported by a great acting and a good plot. However, the last quarter of the movie is confused, not clear, needing interpretation; therefore, the screenplay writer Minako Daira or the cult director Takashi Miike or both failed since they were not able to transmit a clear conclusion of the story to the audience. I glanced in IMDb the most different interpretations for the end of the story to ratify my opinion. My vote is six.

Title (Brazil): "Ligação Perdida" ("Missed Call")
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Timelines don't lie
squelcho6 September 2005
For those who think this movie is derivative, and specifically cite Ju-On, Ringu, and Dark Water as its inspiration, perhaps they should check the release date of MPD Psycho. It's 2000, the same year that Ju-On was premiered on TV.

I wouldn't go so far as to say that Takashi Miike invented this spooky technology genre, but the evil spirit/ghost in the machine in MPD Psycho originally moved from host to host via mobile phone and internet connection. Maybe Miike was influenced by Joe Dante's electrical Gremlin, or Wes Craven's Shocker. Only he would know. Whatever the reality, One Missed Call, plays out like MPD Psycho episode seven, shot on film instead of digital video, so it looks darker, less jokey, and consequently, more professional. The ring-tone even has an air of eerie familiarity about it.

As an oblique footnote to the MPD series, it's pretty good. As a moody grudge movie in its own right, it punches well above its weight.
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southardemily11 March 2013
Warning: Spoilers
I don't write reviews often, but I felt compelled to write this, because I think this film is under appreciated due to it's categorization as just another J-horror movie with nothing new to bring to the table. I think most viewers completely missed the social commentaries in this film about traditional Japanese culture vs. the rise of technology and westernization. Maybe I am over analytical, but I thought this film was about a lot more than just horror.

(POSSIBLE SPOILER) I point to the scene when Natsumi is on the television program specifically. The filmography and cuts here are amazing, and I also loved the contrast of the exploitation of the event, with the detective, the priest, and those who really do see this as supernatural and as a reflection of traditional Japanese folklore and ghost stories.

I love horror, and J-horror, but with the exception of the traditional Japanese portrayal of a ghost, I didn't really think of this as J-horror. I think it's more a social commentary, under the mask of a horror film, on the contradicting feelings of "gut" reactions and belief in traditional folk tales vs. the modern era, the ideas of logic and reason over superstition, and westernization.

(POSSIBLE SPOILER)For instance, when talking to the nurse about "Munchausen by Proxy," I love the contrast of this "logical" "psychological modern approach vs. the scenes of the true abuse, and with traditional legends.

Like I said, I might be over analyzing the film, but I honestly don't think I am, because Takeshi Miike is NOT A TYPICAL J-HORROR DIRECTOR. This is obviously more related to J-horror than his other films, due to the use of superstition and the traditional long haired, pale ghost, but that is culturally significant, and if you can view this film with these ideas in mind, and with a basic understanding of Japanese history and culture, it's a different experience
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Fantastic Movie
mirosuionitsaki228 October 2007
Warning: Spoilers
You'd have to have the movie on Japanese Audio and English subtitles to appreciate the movie. Without that, you won't be able to appreciate the good dialect of the movie.

The direction of this movie is wonderful. Every moment fills the viewer with suspense. Your heart is racing, your mind is thinking, "Who is next?". The DVD description is no lie. This really does take the style of "The Ring" and "The Grudge" and put it together to make a chilling film.

One thing that got me impatient but still excited was that how everything was a little slow. Some times, things just grew silent and made me just want to say, "How is she going to die?". I found my self at times saying, "Don't do it! Don't die!" But that was in my mind.

Chakushin ari (One Missed Call) is a movie you can truly enjoy. I love the style of Japanese films. They always seem better than American films. If you are a gore fan, this is not all that bloody. There is a part where someone's arm twists and bones are breaking. But some times, you just have to say, "Screw it." and watch the movie.

I plan to watch more of Takashi Miike's films.
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Ringu with cellphones!
Rocco300026 July 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Although a very formulaic movie, ripe with unoriginality, still very scary, and sure to give you nightmares afterwards.

It basically follows the standards that Ringu set up. Some vengeful ghost sends warnings out to people before it kills them. There is even the funeral scene after the first death, where a school girl tells the female lead all about the myth. And also just when you think it is over at the end, the ghost comes back for one last scare. Not very much character depth or plot depth. Just a very very good exercise in trying to scare the audience, which works very well here in One Missed Call as it did with Ringu.

The problem is that the day before I saw this one, I saw A Tale of Two Sisters. Another equally terrifying movie, but with an incredible story and character depth, so it is hard not to compare. Check it out if you haven't seen it.

Best scene in the movie? The Exorcism show. Chilling as much as it is funny; very entertaining! Well done!

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Nothing Special
DigitalRevenantX710 April 2011
PLOT OUTLINE: A group of friends are shocked when they start receiving voicemail messages on their cell phones from themselves 72 hours in the future. As the time that each message arrives, the recipient is killed by a malevolent entity seeking retribution for their death.

One Missed Call is one of a spate of Japanese horror films (commonly known as J-Horror) that came out in the late 1990s / early 2000s. The genre was kicked off by Hideo Nakata's ridiculously successful RING, which set up the clichés that all the other films, including this one, follow almost to the letter.

As far as horror films go, this particular one is nothing special. In some respects, it is a bit of a disappointment, mainly due to the fact that its director, Takeshi Miike, is capable of making some really individualistic films that can be fairly compared to the works of Shinya Tsukamoto. One Missed Call follows the Ring formula almost to the letter – there is a technologically-minded curse (in this case cell phones) where the owner of the device is given a warning & a deadline before they are killed. To be fair, Ring was not that good a film, but it did have an atmosphere that was creepy & unearthly. This film doesn't even have that, not to mention the fact that, at nearly two hours long, it overstays its welcome. There is the occasional moment which suggests a work of promise – one of the victims meets her fate in a television studio – but for all intensive purposes, One Missed Call is dead on arrival.

The execs at Hollywood conducted a remake some years later, which was actually quite better than this original.
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One missed call ((2003)
atinder15 April 2008
One Missed Call is also Know as Chakushin Ari is 2003 J-Horror movie made by Takashi Mike.

This movie dose sound a lot like The Ringu but instead of Tape now, it Cell Phone and Instead of a Older DEAD Girl with Long Black Hair, This time, it a little Girl With Long Black Hair.

Apart from that, most of this movie is total Different

May contain Spoiler ONE MISSED CALL features a series of victims who receive messages on their cell phones: the gimmick is that the calls come from their own cell phones - a day or two in the future - and the messages appear to have been recorded at the precise moment of a violent death.

The story involves a young woman trying to track down the source of the calls, with the aid of a man whose sister was the first to die. The rather thin trail of clues leads them to a hospital where a young girl died of an asthma attack; her (apparently) abusive mother (it is rumoured) intentionally waited too long to seek treatment, resulting in her daughter's death.

The mother, who mysteriously disappeared, is eventually found, dead, and the malevolent ghost apparently put to rest - until a twist ending keeps the horror alive.

This movies had some really good creepy moments , Awesome creepy Death Ring tone was great.

talking about the Ring tone in Japan, had become rather popular and even I have it on my Phone in the UK. I know some people you loved this Ring tone not even seen the movie (And I am talking about the Crap Remake Ring Tone)

Good movies and Great acting from everyone.

i rate this movie 6/10
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A fascinating hall of mirrors like abstraction of loss, abuse and alienated youth
Graham Greene4 June 2008
This just might be the most interesting psychological drama that I've seen since Miike's own masterpiece Audition (1999), and one that it seems has sadly been misinterpreted by many critics and viewers as being a work of simple J-Horror by numbers. Though it has elements of this, the characteristics of J-Horror, which are very much rooted in standard social and spiritual taboos that many Japanese people take incredibly seriously, are used as window dressing here, intended to distract the audience from the more important and subtle ideas at work behind the surface of the narrative.

It certainly isn't a pastiche or a spoof as some viewers have indicated, though you could argue that it works on a certain satirical level, with the odd hint of benign humour that we've come to expect from Miike woven throughout. However, judging from much of the stylistic tone of the film, with its deeper allusions to child abuse and the murky and alienated tone that the director attaches to it, I honestly can't imagine that this is meant to be laughed at. Those who claim that the film is a comedy or a spoof are more likely to be Miike fans that are unfamiliar with the broader aspects of his work and the way in which he puts his films together; instead judging his films simply on the shock-value and tongue-in-cheek triviality of projects like Ichi the Killer (2002) and Dead or Alive (1999). Yes, he does accept any film that is offered to him, and more often than not chooses work that he feels he can do something interesting with; experimenting with the form and content and occasionally adding his own touches that are often subversive and somewhat attention seeking, but he always has in mind an approach that best suits the material.

He doesn't condescend to his work; there's no cynicism here. As ever, Miike is fulfilling the wishes of his producer whilst simultaneously bringing something else to the film that may have been missed by a lesser filmmaker, more interested in the superficial quality of the story. In this case, a sly comment on the media and how it manipulates tragedy for profit; turning horror and pain into spectacle. It also continues the theme of lost youth; something quite prevalent in Japanese cinema, with films like Battle Royale (2000), Visitor Q (2001), Pulse (2001) and All About Lily Chou-Chou (2002) documenting the recent struggles in both social environments and education, with the idea of a generation of Japanese youth overwhelmed by expectations of family and society and cast adrift in such a way as to leave them ultimately more venerable to a greater evil (be it drugs, gang violence, suicide or crime). It's all done metaphorically of course - with the J-horror elements used to mask these ideas - though certainly, in many of the scenes, we see characters, kids even, isolated and with no one to turn to.

Think about the presentation of both the film and the narrative; the absence of responsible adults creating a ghost world that these kids drift in and out of, turning only to each other for solace. The creation of a nocturnal world where school children hang out on railway bridges in the early hours of the morning, watching scenes of abject horror in a way that suggests tragic familiarity. The way that the background characters - the everyday people on the street - huddle under umbrellas watching a televised exorcism in the centre of Shinjuku completely cut off and detached from everything that is happening, becoming an almost representation of the audience even; eating up the pain and suffering as dismissible entertainment and completely missing the personal horror and exploitation of the abuse itself. Likewise, look at the scenes shot during the day. The streets are mostly empty, save for the presence of the adult media, the police (who have a complicated role within the film) and the students who are at the centre of the whole thing.

Those claiming that this is a comedy seem uneducated when it comes to Miike and his work; looking for the vapid cartoon character and his torrents of gore and depraved sex, and not the finely nuanced filmmaker who gave us excellent, multi-layered works like Shinjuku Triad Society (1995), Rainy Dog (1997), The Bird People in China (1998), Audition (1999), Dead or Alive: Birds (2000) and Gozu (2003). As a horror film, this is effective. The scenes in the abandoned hospital, although clichéd, work incredibly well at ramping the tension. However, there's more to the film once we dig beneath the surface. The final act of the film takes place on at least three different levels; taking in the real, the imagined and the abstracted memory of both. The way Miike brings the various elements together - using stylised production design and skewed perspectives - creates a hall of mirrors like sense of abstraction familiar from the final act of Audition. Think about it. Is Gozu simply an absurd spoof on the latent homosexuality of the Yakuza sub-genre, or is there a more interest sub-textual argument about identity and gender being woven within? One Missed Call works on a similar level.

Those who make the effort to watch Miike's work will know that there is always much more to his films than it initially seems, though you really have to work at it. To suggest that this is a spoof because you fail to appreciate the subtle, sub-textual storytelling and ask simply for mere cartoon-like abstraction is a discredit to a great filmmaker and those of us familiar with Miike's work beyond that of Ichi the Killer. With One Missed Call, Miike gives us a multi-layered film; shocking and satirical in equal measures and tied to a truly tragic depiction of loss, abuse and alienated youth.
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Same bullcrap, different movie
Justin5 July 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Basically, take the concept of every Asian horror ghost movie and smash it into one and you get this movie. The story goes like this: a bunch of college kids get voice mails from their own phones that are foretelling their deaths. There's some s*** going on with ghosts, which if you've seen any Asian ghost movie, isn't scary by now. This movie was quite upsetting because it's very clichéd. It's the same bullcrap, different movie.

The acting was pretty good. Unfortunately the actors are put into a very Ring-esquire situation, so it's nothing we haven't seen in the past. The two lead acts did a solid job though.

As far as gore, there's not much going on. We get a cool sequence that includes an arm twisting a head off (I don't know how else to explain that), but it was cut away so you don't see anything except the final result. You see some blood at times, including decapitated arms and a zombie (that looked really cool I might add), but this movie isn't too bloody.

The scares in the movie are few and spread out, and it's really not that scary. You'll get some creepy images at times, but it's not enough for me to consider scary. It's nothing different from Ringu, Ju-On, or Dark Water, and none of those scared me either. That's really the downfall of this (and most Asian horror movies) is that if it doesn't deliver the scares then it's just not that good.

As far as directing, Takashi Miike still did a pretty good job. He seemed a little tamed in this movie compared to his past movies, but he still portrays a lot of his messed up style he's become famous for. A lot of images were a lot like Miike (including a scene with a bunch of jars of dead fetuses), and the last 15 - 20 minutes seemed far more Miike then the rest of the movie. Still, the movie is flawed by its unoriginality.

I would recommend this only to people who are huge on Asian horror movies (even if you are, I can recommend much better) or big Miike fans. Warning to those who want to get into Miike, this is NOT his best work.

I'm giving it a 4 because it's just mediocre. Perhaps if this was released 4 or 5 years ago it might be worth a higher rating.

Also, I'd like to b**** about Asian horror movies real quick. How come if it's an Asian horror movie it's automatically suppose to be good over here (US)? A LOT of these movies are the equivalent in Japan to what Scream, Urban Legends, and I Know What You Did Last Summer were over here in the 90's. If you've seen one you've seen them all. And a lot of these movies rely way too much on scares and imagery that if it doesn't deliver the scares they set out to do then they're just not that good, and nothing would change that. More Asian horror films need to be more like Audition and A Tale of Two Sisters, two movies that if they don't frighten or scare you, at least they have great stories, acting, direction, cinematography, and much more to back them up. Two movies that aren't just great horror movies, but great movies in general. More Asian horror movies need to be like these instead of the cliché, "A ghost just wanted to be found so it went around killing people through their phone/video tape/house/electric appliance/water pipes/google search engine/vibrator/groceries/etc."
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J- Horror at its finest
orcasman-122 July 2008
With all the kudos and credits being thrown at Shimizu and Suzuki its a shame Miike is not given the same accolades as his films are just as well done as his counterparts, the only difference being he hasn't accepted any Hollywood millions to redo his films himself. I found the film as creepy and scary as any of them. The acting for all J-Horror took me a while to get used to but once I quit looking with a Hollywood eye the superbness jumps right out at you. the special effects by our standards are a bit unreal but the way they are done makes them even better. I have the directors cut DVD with all the interviews and extras as all my DVD's do but it opens up a whole new aspect to the ideas in the directors vision, I recommend the film to all J- Horror fans as well N.A. fans that will watch it without the expectation of giant HW. sfx and budgets and watch with an eye for what a director can do without hampering by a studio or over priced production staff, I give it 8/10 only because I know he has better works coming and older ones being translated.
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Takashi Miike's somewhat unique entry into the Japanese ghost sub-genre
LoneWolfAndCub16 April 2008
Miike is well known for making visceral and disturbing horror movies. Think along the lines of 'Audition,' 'Ichi the Killer' or 'Visitor Q.' Upon hearing that he delved into supernatural horror ala Ju-On and Ringu I was quite excited. I finally caught this on TV a couple of weeks back and was surprised...and disappointed. Although this holds up very well amongst the recent crop of J-Horror (and American horror), it isn't entirely original and it all felt a bit "been there, done that."

Chakusin ari (or One Missed Call) revolves around mobile phones. A group of friends start receiving ominous voice-mails from their future selves. At the time that they die. This starts a chain of odd deaths which causes our main character, Yumi (Kou Shibasaki) to investigate the source of the phone calls with the help of policeman Hiroshi (Shin'ichi Tsutsumi).

Miike knows how to create suspense and he proves it here. There are many tense and creepy moments throughout, although the pace does slow down a tad in the middle. The acting is very good from all the actors and the story proceeds in a logical manner (with no plot holes; rare in a ghost movie). Expectedly, the deaths are gruesome and bloody (it IS Miike after all). The ending is typical Miike, confusing, disturbing but original and oddly suited.

However, this movie cannot escape the feeling of "seen it all before." The typical long-haired girl scares are the there, along with a couple of "boo" scares; so basically it carried a 'Ju-On' feel throughout. As far as J-Horror goes, though, this is a fitting contribution.

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I suppose I should be impressed...
TwoCrude13 January 2008
Warning: Spoilers
By all the fawning people have been doing over Miike and his work. I sat through this flick tonight. I figured, if it's half as good as Ringu, as I assumed from these comments it might be, then it will be worth my time.

No such luck.

I'm all for finding the next great director (or writer), but I don't think Miike is the one. I don't have an NYU Masters of Fine Arts, but I do know this much: a horror movie has to have pacing. It also has to give the viewer more credulity than this movie does.

This film's pacing had me shaking my head. Some of the scenes near the end dragged so badly, I went to the fridge and lingered there while Kou Shibasaki stared at the camera for seemingly minutes on end, eyes wide and mouth agape. A famous director once made the claim, and I'm paraphrasing, a movie could be made by turning the camera on a beautiful woman and letting it roll. Kou is not a good enough actress to make that work. She stares paralyzed at the undead girl for more scenes than I care to remember. And she isn't the only one doing an impersonation of a deer in headlights; other cast members apparently feel the need to imitate this non-performance. The script gives them little room to do much else for far too much of the time.

I like Asian cinema. Hong Kong action flicks from the last 30 years, Korean horror like "Phone" and "Koma", Ang Lee's work, some of the trashy but fun Filipino movies with gratuitous sex and fighting, as well as others. Chakushin Ari I could have done without.
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One of Miike's better films
xirho67-117 November 2005
I was a little put off in the beginning, felt like a mix between Ju-on and Ringu. It is the same kind of 'ghost gonna get you' story lines, but Miike succeeds where the others failed. He gave the story more depth and showed you more of the evil. As the film progressed it got creepier and creepier. It was shot very well and the story moved along well. As opposed to most horror films of late, the death scenes were not the main focus. Instead, he really focused a lot on the events leading up to the kill. Compared to a lot of his films, One Missed Call did not have a lot of blood and gore. (It still has some, but not a lot.) I rarely get "creeped" out by movies, but this one gave me goosebumps at least a dozen times. I loved this movie and can't wait to spring it on my unsuspecting friends, like I did with Audition! Ha ha ha.
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One missed call Ringtone!
Nuno Mateus25 July 2005
This is a great movie for all you horror fans. And if like me, you became mesmerized by the ring tone on this movie you can download directly to you cell phone from the following website.

Follow this website:

You can download the polyphonic ring tone by WAP.

Other great movies from the same genre I've seen lately are "The Tale of Two Sisters", "Audition", "Kairo", "Ichi The Killer" and "Night Watch" (from Russia!).

Keep watching this extraordinary horror movies and share your thoughts and ideas with everyone!
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A movie that slowly bleeds to death.
Boba_Fett113829 September 2010
This movie has a more than interesting and good premise and it also has a real promising beginning but as the movie and its story start to progress more the movie actually gets worse and starts to drag and become overlong.

Japanese horror movies are well known and appreciated over the world now days, due to the global success of several genre pieces, with of course "Ringu" as the best example of this. And even though these movies are always well made and good looking ones, there are often more or less the same. Aside from its premises, they are often hardly original in their execution, with the exception of an occasional memorable and effective sequences. And yes, this movie is also pretty much more of the same. It's welcome for the fans of it but it's just offering too little originality, which makes this a movie you'll easily forget.

This is a pretty mainstream movie for normal Takashi Miike standards. Guess he needs to make these type of movies, every once in a while, before he can continue and finance his other movie projects, that are less mainstream and just plain odd and weird with their style and approach. But it are still the movies he is known for and also most appreciated more by people all over the world. I'm not a fan of just all of his movies but often his weirdness, extreme graphic violence and humorous approach of it all can still appeal to me and make his movies something unique and enjoyable for me. But this movie really doesn't has any of that. It's made in the same style as any other popular Japanese horror movie, which means that this movie will probably also disappoint most Takashi Miike lovers.

Thing with this movie is that it has an alright story and main premise in its beginning but the more it all progresses the harder it gets to understand and the less interest you'll keep in this movie. It's the reason why the movie feels like it's dragging at points and feels also certainly overlong. This is a movie that should at least had been 20 minutes shorter really.

This also certainly goes at the expense of the horror and mystery of the movie. Horror-wise this movie is certainly disappointing in what it is offering. Again, because it's being nothing too original but also because the movie it's story-telling doesn't really get you involved with things and therefore a lot of the mystery and tension dies off pretty quick already. It also doesn't help that the movie becomes more and more confusing toward its ending.

But overall, this movie still does a lot of things well. It's certainly not any worse than the average Japanese horror entry and despite all of its problems, I still consider this a watchable movie.

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A genuinely creepy J-horror romp brought to you by the one and only Takashi Miike.
Not the first and certainly not the last in a long, long, (very long) line of Japanese horror 'creep' flicks, "One Missed Call" was not one I anticipated to be much really. The premise is awfully teenybopper: a strange voicemail message on your cell phone tells you when you will die. Somehow I felt like this must have been done before. But not like this guy did it...

It takes a lot to creep my out and Takashi Miike managed to do it pretty well in the final twenty minutes of this movie. The setting becomes extremely scary and the jumpouts are not typical; they don't really build up, they just seem to come out of nowhere.

My only complaint with this film is that it never really ties itself up into a neat little package in the end; it's a little convoluted as to why certain people are connected to the original death. Without giving anything up, I'll just say that I was a bit perplexed.

I have to ask: who thinks it's a smart idea to keep remaking these awesome Asian horror flicks and dumbing them down with Americanized garbage? Are we really that lazy that we can't read subtitles? And if so, why not just watch the dubbed version? I just don't get it! "One Missed Call" is one that should not be missed by horror buffs. I liked it.

8 out of 10, kids.
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