Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The World Sinks Except Japan

Minoru Kawasaki | 2006 | 98 min | Japan

Japan is the only of Earth's land masses with its head above water. The rich from all around the rest of the globe have flown their private jets to Japan to see refuge from their liquid assassin. Once there and without power (the US dollar plummets to less than 1 yen), they have no choice but to do whatever they need to do to survive. Famous actresses become high price prostitutes, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruce Willis (played by hamfisted Japanese actors) become bar jesters, acting like fools for whatever change patrons throw their way, and the prim ministers of China and South Korea become the PM of Japan's lapdogs.

The film's premise is obviously full of potential comedy, and it's well tapped. Minoru Kawasaki fills the film to the brim with outrageous but deadpan laughs. If you've seen any of Kawasaki's other films (The Calamari Wrestler, Executive Koala, Rug Cop) you're pretty well prepared, but those who haven't are sure to be scratching their head for a while before settling into the wonderful world where the absurd is as common as the banal.

The World Sinks Except Japan isn't a perfect movie, and feels a lot longer than its 98 minute runtime, but it's a lot of fun and a fresh take on the end of the world. It's nice to know that someone else out there thinks that the world coming to an end is funny, and not cause to run around panicked with a Quaid brother.

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