A strict, but caring mother has an awakening when she is told she has cancer and it is terminal. She has a few months. She needs to complete her tasks in that short time frame. She needs to... See full summary »
Manji, a highly skilled samurai, becomes cursed with immortality after a legendary battle. Haunted by the brutal murder of his sister, Manji knows that only fighting evil will regain his soul. He promises to help a young girl named Rin avenge her parents, who were killed by a group of master swordsmen led by ruthless warrior Anotsu. The mission will change Manji in ways he could never imagine - ... See full summary »
Lone wolf detective with an enormous personal grievance seeks to connect the mysterious death of his daughter to an urban legend of a villain who terrorizes Japan by insinuating himself ... See full summary »
In the near future, Japan is ruled once more by a monarchy. But, rebels opposed to this rule seek to overthrow the government. The House of Takemikazuchi, a band of assassins is hired by ... See full summary »
Based on a book by writer - director Miwa Nishikawa, a recently widowed writer ( Masahiro Motoki,Departures)whose wife died in a bus crash comes to terms with his grief,or lack of it, in ... See full summary »
An amazing---if somewhat lopsided---neo-noir detective masterpiece
The other reviewer hit the nail on the head in regard to just about everything, so I will merely emphasize and further praise the dark motifs, clever storytelling, and stylish presentation. It's essentially a neo-noir/detective piece with a horror element and vaguely/infinitesimally supernatural twist.
My one point of departure from the other reviewer is the difference between seasons 1 and 2. Season 1 is nearly perfect---the pacing, writing, music, action, performances, set design, and character development. It's all there in spades. And even though there are a handful of unresolved threads, the series could very well end there and be a masterpiece.
Still, I was excited to watch the half-as-long season 2, and while it has many great moments and more of the same stylings, certain aspects of the story become a little larger-than-life. That is basically fine, but contrasts somewhat with the gritty realism of season 1. Likewise, the philosophical banter that came at just the right moments and to the appropriate degree in season 1 becomes a bit super-saturated and on-the-nose in season 2. It's not bad by any means; it's just a little too self-aware and reality-plus in contrast to season 1. As a related point, a charismatic character (who shall remain nameless) who plays just within the bounds of believability in season 1 sort of becomes a bit of a caricature in the second season, specifically in conjunction with the overt philosophizing. Again, not bad by any means, but the character ultimately morphs into a personality more suited for anime (which is not a criticism so much as a sensitivity for what works well in certain genres and less effectively in others). Along similar lines, the supernatural component gets notably stronger by the end of season 2, at least implicitly (which is to say---and I think this is a good thing---the extraordinary occurrences aren't formally explained in supernatural terms. They're just implied to be beyond all the "normal" events in the story.
Lastly, one or two of the story lines held over from the first season are not exactly resolved in a manner I would regard as thoroughly substantive or satisfying. Granted, they are all put to bed in one way or another, but again, one or two of them end in a way that felt a bit rushed and mostly implied (and in fact, in a manner that opens up many subsequent questions).
And yet, despite all that, you'll see from my 10/10 rating how highly I regard Mozu as a whole. It is absolutely genius and a must see if you're into J-drama. But I wouldn't be surprised if you end up enjoying season 1 tangibly more than season 2.
0 of 0 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this