6.4/10
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3 user 1 critic

Akumu no erebêtâ (2009)

(Japanese with English subtitles) Three seemingly unacquainted men and a woman find themselves trapped in an elevator. As the hours pass and anxiety rises, they recount darkly funny tales ... See full summary »

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(based on the novel by), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Credited cast:
Seiyô Uchino ... Saburo (as Masaaki Uchino)
... Kaoru
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Shôtarô Ashida
... Yoko
Moto Fuyuki
Kotoha Hiroyama
Manami Honjô ... Manami
Chad Horii
Shinpei Ichikawa
Hachirô Ika
Shin Ikeda
Tetsuhiro Ikeda
Ryosei Konishi
Makoto Miyashita
Kôichi Ohori
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Storyline

(Japanese with English subtitles) Three seemingly unacquainted men and a woman find themselves trapped in an elevator. As the hours pass and anxiety rises, they recount darkly funny tales of how they came to be stuck there in the first place. They finally realize the elevator is in fact a trap, but hatched by which of the parties and for what motive? Written by Anonymous

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10 October 2009 (Japan)  »

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Elevator Trap  »

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Quirky comedy-thriller
24 December 2013 | by See all my reviews

The plot: Four strangers trapped together in a stopped elevator share their stories and learn that some of them may ulterior motives for being there.

Elevator Trap isn't the kind of film that I usually watch, but I figured that I'd take a chance on it. It's a quirky Japanese comedy-thriller that unpredictably veers from comedy to thriller throughout the film. Sometimes I really enjoy that quirky refusal to adhere to stylistic convention, but here I thought that the film would be better off as a straight thriller or black comedy. The first half of the film is fairly lighthearted and silly, but it becomes darker as time goes on; eventually it pauses in order to deliver a public service message about suicide.

As with the stories of Agatha Christie, which the film references a couple times, the requisite plot twists may seem a bit predictable to savvy thriller fans who know to expect the unexpected, distrust the obvious red herrings, and automatically suspect the least likely characters. Still, for fans of Agatha Christie, this is a fun homage that plays with the clichés of the genre. I was not able to predict everything, of course, but I did a fair job of mapping out the plot twists once the characters were introduced. Unlike some films that depend on plot twists, I did not notice any obvious plot holes.

The sets are not as limited as the synopsis might lead you to believe, and the list of characters is larger than the few people stuck in the elevator. In fact, probably half of the film takes place outside of the elevator, though many of those scenes are flashbacks. The acting was pretty good. I found the quirkiness a bit forced and the plot a bit predictable, but I'm sure others will enjoy it. If you haven't gotten tired of films about people stuck in an elevator, this is worth a watch.


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