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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Brutal, disturbing, raw filmaking.
Great movie based on a true story. Fantastic performances throughout, and great direction from Shion Sono. However be warned, this film is very brutal and disturbing in places and doesn't hold back with some of its violent scenes, especially against women.

The Blu-Ray picture is mostly decent, but does suffer during the night sequences.

Overall I...
Published on 10 July 2011 by IMP

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Average 2.5 hour film that contains two great 90 minute movies
Tsumetai Nettaigyo) (mild spoilers): a mild-mannered fish-shop owner crosses paths with a larger competitor who at first seems like an ideal business partner – but that veneer doesn’t last long. It feels like the director started out with two completely separate film ideas; the first 1-hour 45 contains a pretty credible, low-key, tense, but slow-burning...
Published 4 months ago by Paul_ABZ


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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Brutal, disturbing, raw filmaking., 10 July 2011
By 
IMP (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cold Fish [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
Great movie based on a true story. Fantastic performances throughout, and great direction from Shion Sono. However be warned, this film is very brutal and disturbing in places and doesn't hold back with some of its violent scenes, especially against women.

The Blu-Ray picture is mostly decent, but does suffer during the night sequences.

Overall I recommend this movie - it is powerful, raw filmaking at its best.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blood runs Cold., 15 Mar 2012
This review is from: Cold Fish [DVD] (DVD)
Based loosely upon a real life incident involving dog breeders in Saitama Prefecture, Cold Fish instead switches its focus to tropical fish sellers, following the meek and useless family man Shamoto (Mitsuru Fukikoshi), who runs a small shop whilst trying, and generally failing, to maintain his relationships with his second wife Taeko (Megumi Kagurazaka) and teenage daughter Mitsuko (Hikari Kajiwara). A chance encounter introduces him to fellow fish retailer Murata (Denden), who runs a far larger and more successful establishment, staffed by young girls and his strange wife. Though Murata seems friendly enough, if a little pushy, everything changes when Shamoto witnesses him brutally murdering an investor and is coerced into helping with the disposal of the corpse.

His previously ordered world is turned upside down as Murata pulls him into his life of excess and insanity, at the same time changing forever his role within his own stagnating family unit. This film is impossible to fit into any neat category. Its part horror, part black comedy (its extremely funny at times), part serial killer movie, with a huge dollop of allegory about business and Japanese society. And its also a hoot - brilliant acting and direction keeps you hooked as the film gets gorier and gorier.

The entire cast is compelling as a group of seemingly ordinary people who are teetering on either side of major personality disorders. And its not always clear who the real psychopaths are. Only the fish seem normal. Possibly the strangest thing about Cold Fish, and what marks it most decisively as another master work from Sono Sion is the fact that despite its incredible excess and abundance of madness, it remains highly philosophical, and in its own way is a deeply personal film, an internal horror show of insecurity exaggerated and thrown up on screen for all to see. Easily one of the best films of the last year, at least for fans of the director and those brave enough to enter his warped world, it stands as yet another classic from Sono, and as a truly original and unique piece of modern cinema.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gore, 19 May 2012
By 
Dr. Delvis Memphistopheles "FIST" (London) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
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This review is from: Cold Fish [DVD] (DVD)
Contains some dazzling acting performances based upon living in an alienated world where paranoia binds people together in acts of bonding. A man lives a loveless life with his second wife and step daughter. The daughter hates the new mother and rebels.

As she embarks upon a stealng spree she becomes caught and this sets up the plot. Our hero is introduced to the man without boundaries. The film dissects humiliation, gender roles, subservience and the ability to transcend roles.

Brutal, vicious, especially towards the end, it revels in a particular Japanese film fetish os pure unadulterated oozing gore, probably one of the nastiest films I have watched. The unfolding life of the hero is the key interest as he loses his romantic self to become the opposite after being goaded by his mentor.

Alienated from his wife and daughter, this being a Japanese film, do not expect it all to end with the loose ends resolved as it twists turns and slices through a tale of a man who loses his soul. Unlike the other surface slashers this concentrates on psychological insight. The women are beaten and raped toys, whilst the men are trapped within various codes of ritual humiliation, stretching back to their lost childhoods. The pounding desire to make amends becomes a subconscious driving theme.

Loses a star for the endng which lost some of its sparkle. However in between the viewer is treated to a labyrinth where a man's mind is slowly colonised by hatred until he becomes the opposite of himself.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Dark, at times gruesome, others darkly comic, characterful film, 22 July 2014
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This review is from: Cold Fish [DVD] (DVD)
I've enjoyed various unusual Japanese films (Studio Gibli, and other anime/manga to quirks such as Turtles are surprisingly fast swimmers onto the brutal Ichi the Killer, and everyone's favourite - Battle Royale), and am somewhat a Nippon fan generally.

Having seen Sion Sono's Love Exposure on Film 4, I wanted to see some of his other works. Cold Fish is quite a different film, (based partly on true events in Japan (instead of fish replace with rare breed dogs), but has a similar aroma as Love Exposure. Cold Fish has a similar feel as Sion's other work - Guilty of Romance, and shares a certain downward spiral of a character from a previous good person, into something darker, and less clearly labelled. The film progresses well, (a shorter and quicker pace than Love Exposure), with the main character (a small time live fish seller) becoming embraced by and drawn into the world of the very eccentric, charismatic and sometimes very darkly comic 'big fish' of the live fish selling arena.

You can read about the plot on IMDB etc, so I wont repeat more here, but suffice to say there are interesting characters, plot development, moments of madness, the isolation yet enclosedness of people, interspersed with curious tranquility that you can either simply take and enjoy at face value, or sit and contemplate to a deeper level, given the commentary on Japanese society it can share.

Worth buying and watching, though depending on your partner / wife / husband etc, not necessarily with them, unless they're already a world cinema / nippon fan - they start to look at you differently afterwards!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sono Sion delivers once again, 19 Oct 2011
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This review is from: Cold Fish [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
After watching Love Exposure, I didn't think Sono Sion would ever come close to achieving what he achieved in that absolutely wonderful, perfect film. Then along came Cold Fish. There's not much to say that hasn't already been said, it's unflinching and totally enthralling. Mixed with the right amount of disturbing element with a tinge of jet black comedy, it delivers like a brick in the face for Sono fans. This film is brutal, holds no prisoners, balls out entertainment. It's grim, it's truly sexy, it's violent and it's damn near perfect.

Highly recommended.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Average 2.5 hour film that contains two great 90 minute movies, 23 April 2014
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This review is from: Cold Fish [DVD] (DVD)
Tsumetai Nettaigyo) (mild spoilers): a mild-mannered fish-shop owner crosses paths with a larger competitor who at first seems like an ideal business partner – but that veneer doesn’t last long. It feels like the director started out with two completely separate film ideas; the first 1-hour 45 contains a pretty credible, low-key, tense, but slow-burning con-man drama – with an off-kilter / black comedy undercurrent. The final act transforms the film into a full-blown slasher – which dwells on depraved sex, violence, gore and some body disposal scenes for a little longer than would be deemed comfortable (or necessary), peaking in a hyper-messy crimson-soaked blood ‘n’ guts finalé – shock cinema at it’s best; or perhaps worst!

This wouldn’t usually be a big deal, but at 2.5 hours you could have cut two (better, and) entirely different 90-minute movies out of it – an Evil Dead style gore-romp, or Coen-esque black comedy. There are glimpses of superb direction and storytelling, straight off the bat, but they end up getting lost in the bigger-picture. Acting is also solid (the runaway star being leading man Mitsuru Fukikoshi’s full-bodied transformation) – although, along with everything else, it all gets watered down and lost within the superfluous runtime. This would, by normal standards, be anything but an ordinary film – particularly because it’s littered with gropey and sensational sex scenes – but when you’re following up from an epic like Love Exposure, this feels lukewarm in comparison.

Score: 5/10 from ParagraphFilmReviews dot com
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5.0 out of 5 stars This will blow your mind!, 8 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Cold Fish [DVD] (DVD)
I watched this one night knowing nothing about it. The next morning I was on here buying it!
Simply put this movie stuck with me for days! Go into this one without doing any research and it will blow you away.
One of my favourite films of recent years, easily!
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5.0 out of 5 stars not for the fainthearted, 22 Oct 2013
This review is from: Cold Fish [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
Based on a true serial killing spree in japan the acting is superb and tension builds up quickly from a slow beginning.Certainly not for the fainthearted and holds no punches with the blood and gore and sex scenes.What sets it apart is the superb acting from all the cast not always evident in jap films.The extras are excellent as well some of the best I have seen if you are interested in horror films and jap crime.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Masterpiece, 18 Oct 2013
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This review is from: Cold Fish [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
Keeping this review short and to the point, this film is a masterpiece. Although it takes a while for the gore to show, stick with it. Add every single 'video nasty' together and I promise you that this film has more gore in it than all of those movies combined. So, if you like gore, buy this film. It's a masterpiece of its kind.

Karl Steiger
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4.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing and Interesting, 18 Aug 2013
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This review is from: Cold Fish [DVD] (DVD)
Cold fish -

A disturbing film from Japan with
a sense of crime thriller around it.
In the film there was gore and blood
but that is now part of many thriller type
films nowadays, it provided an emphasis
to the story.

I considered 4 star for Cold Fish because
its an out of the ordinary film with a great
cast.
A definitive film for those late night's
with tons of pop corn.
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Cold Fish [DVD]
Cold Fish [DVD] by Sion Sono (DVD - 2011)
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