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Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu

Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006) Movie Poster
Japan  •    •  98m  •    •  Directed by: Minoru Kawasaki.  •  Starring: Kenji Kohashi, Shûji Kashiwabara, Masatoshi Matsuo, Cynthia Cheston, Blake Crawford, Avery Fane, Hiroshi Fujioka, Delcea Mihaela Gabriela, Jon Heese, Arthur Kuroda, Takashi Matsuo, Ian Moore, Kenji Motomiya.  •  Music by: Masako Ishii.
      Thanks to global warming and shifting tectonic plates, planet Earth's landmass has just gotten a massive overhaul. Japan is the only country on the planet that has managed to avoid being devastated by the unprecedented natural disaster, and it isn't long before refugees from every affected nation are attempting to integrate themselves into Japanese society. And it isn't an easy transition either, because as A-list American actors turn up on television costume samurai dramas and white women go to work for middle-class Japanese families, those who don't sufficiently blend in among Japanese society are arrested. Meanwhile, as the former leaders of China and South Korea become lapdogs for the Japanese Prime Minister, geologists discover that there's more seismic activity on the horizon, and the worst may be yet to come.

Trailers:

   Length:  Languages:  Subtitles:
 1:34
 

Review:

Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Image from: Nihon Igai Zenbu Chinbotsu (2006)
Due to rather dubious plate tectonics, every country in the world starts to sink beneath the sea... except Japan. It all happens so quickly that few survive, but the richest and most powerful in each country manage to make it to Japan to escape the watery fate of most of humanity. Politicians and movie stars that were used to being the world's elite find themselves in an entirely different situation in their new homeland, at the mercy of the generosity of their hosts - or failing that, their ability to entertain them.

THE SINKING OF JAPAN was originally a novel, released in 1973, and it spawned a satirical response in the form of a short novel called THE WORLD SINKS EXCEPT JAPAN. When it was announced that the original novel was to be made into a big-budget movie (for the second time) in 2006, the only reasonable thing for Minoru Kawasaki to do was to announce that he would make its satirical brother into a movie too... but on what must doubtless have been a fraction of the budget that could comfortably be rounded down to zero.

Whilst the rest of the world was barely mentioned in passing when Japan sank, here they are foregrounded, and the reaction of the Japanese to having to share their country with an influx of foreigners whom they now have power over is the major focus of the film. Whilst JAPAN SINKS revels in notions of the Japanese spirit excelling and triumphing in the face of adversity, THE WORLD SINKS has a much more realistic view of humanity (not just in Japan) - selfish, vain, petulant, unreliable, untrustworthy and xenophobic.

Whilst WORLD certainly doesn't have the budget for special effects that JAPAN did, it makes up for it by having a smart script and a sense of humour. Characters are mostly ridiculous stereotypes, and the film is cheerfully ridiculous on many occasions. The acting is mostly terrible, but that's not such a bad thing when the film isn't asking us take it seriously and have an emotional response. There are many non-Japanese cast members, and their ability with the language ranges from fluency to barely able to string a sentence together - which fits the situation of their characters.

There are no heroics to be found here, and no heart-warming message about triumph in the face of adversity, which means it's much less nauseating than the film it satirises - and generally more satisfying. It can't be claimed to be a great film because the production values are so bargain basement, but I happily give it..


Review by Simon Booth from the Internet Movie Database.