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House

(Hausu)
  • Japan 1977
  • 88 min
  • HD
  • Japanese with English subtitles
Hosted by New York Asian Film Fest programmer Marc Walkow

WINNER: Best New Director, Blue Ribbon Awards 1978

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Credits

Director: Nobuhiko Obayashi
Screenplay: Nobuhiko Obayashi, Chiho Katsura
Cast: Kimiko Ikegami, Kumiko Ohba, Yoko Minamida
Producers: Nobuhiko Obayashi, Tomoyuki Tanaka
Distributor: Janus Films

Description

LSD, thy name is HOUSE! One part glossy teen hijinx, one part horror movie and one part whacked out whatzit, this long-lost head trip from Japan can’t be described, it can only be experienced. We’re extremely proud to bring this movie to audiences on the big screen with this restored digital master, featuring a video introduction from the director, the inimitable Nobuhiko Obayashi—or OB as he’s known. OB didn’t follow the traditional route to becoming a filmmaker, choosing to carve his own path, releasing a bevy of mind-bending 8mm movies in the Japanese film underground. By the mid-’70s he’d become a famous director of commercials, shooting the infamous Charles Bronson Mandom commercials on the Toho lot. While there, Toho invited him to make a feature film. The industry was crashing so hard that they were willing to give the keys to the studio to just about anyone at the time. Thank god they did, otherwise we wouldn’t have HOUSE.

With a feature in his future, OB did the only thing you could do when faced with the daunting task of coming up with the story for your first film: he consulted his 11-year-old daughter. What they came up with is the horror film HOUSE, a singular movie that is the unholy spawn of a lava lamp and a haunted house that somehow leaves a fresh minty taste in your mouth and a monsoon in your mind. Combining all the best visual effects trickery that he’d picked up from his extensive commercial work and chock full of the bizarre non-sequiturs you’d expect from the mind of a seven-year-old, HOUSE features a half-dozen or so ‘Morning Musume’ (pop idol)-type teenage girls who would bop around the screen and eventually get knocked off by an evil moptop witch and her white Himalayan cat. It can safely be said, that you’ve never experienced a film like HOUSE before. While OB went on to a very successful directing career (he’s still going today), none of his films have quite reached the giddy psychedelic heights of this debut. In fact, no one’s films have. So come on out and bow down to the strange ’70s sorcery of... HOOUUUUUUUUUUUUSSSSSSE.

—NEW YORK ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL

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