You know, after seeing "Shock Labyrinth" (2009) I thought Takashi Shimizu was losing it. Sure, it was only one movie, but it was a really lame movie that felt like amateur hour. Most fortunately, Shimizu rebounds nicely with "Rabbit Horror." A young mute woman (Hikari Mitsushima, arguably Japan's best young actress) and her little brother experience nightmarish visions involving a large rabbit. While there's nothing particularly scary here, the horror imagery is creative and fun to watch (there is an emphasis on dream logic, various "forms" of rabbits, an amusement park, and a nifty spiral staircase). The psychological elements are nothing new, but they unfold nicely and are engaging. Ironically, this has certain similarities to "Shock Labyrinth" but does everything a lot better. At only 83 minutes this is a cool movie that flies right by.
By the way, the highly acclaimed Christopher Doyle (In the Mood for Love, Hero, Green Tea) is the cinematographer, so that helps too.
Some other recent Japanese horror films that I recommend are "Tomie Unlimited" (2011), "Kyofu" (2010), and all four of the "Kaidan Horror Classics" (2010) films.
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