films seen
7
average score
2.78*
nationality
Japan - 45 years old
status
Alive and kicking
more info

Solid pieces

Hyouka: Forbidden Secrets

by Mari Asato
Also known as
Hyôka
Specifics
2017 / 114m - Japan
Genre
Mystery, Drama
More info:
rating
3.5*/5.0*
Hyouka: Forbidden Secrets poster

A somewhat surprising film from Mari Asato, who is best known for her work in the horror genre. This is full-blown drama with a touch of mystery thrown into the mix. A quest of a couple of high school kids into the mysterious events that happened 33 years earlier. A low-key and calm little film that does just about everything right, but doesn't truly excel at anything.

Bilocation

by Mari Asato
Also known as
Bairokeshon
Specifics
2013 / 119m - Japan
Genre
Drama, Horror, Mystery
More info:
rating
3.5*/5.0*
Bilocation poster

One of Asato's better films. Maybe because it's not just a horror film, but also a pretty nifty mystery. Asato leaves the typical Japanese horror tropes behind her and delivers a film that's a little spooky, a little eerie, but mostly very mysterious. Well acted, nicely shot and interesting from start to finish.

The inoffensive

Kidan Piece of Darkness

by Koji Shiraishi, Yoshihiro Nakamura, Mari Asato, Eisuke Naito, Hajime Ohata, Hiroki Iwasawa
Also known as
Kidan Hyakkei
Specifics
2016 / 100m - Japan
Genre
Horror
More info:
rating
3.0*/5.0*
Kidan Piece of Darkness poster

A decent but slightly underwhelming horror anthology. Six respected directors tackle 10 horror stories, but with a setup like this there simply isn't enough variation in style and themes. There are no real weak entries, on the other hand far too few shorts that make an effort to stand out. Solid filler, but nothing more.

Fatal Frame

by Mari Asato
Also known as
Gekijô-ban: Zero
Specifics
2014 / 104m - Japan
Genre
Horror
More info:
rating
3.0*/5.0*
Fatal Frame poster

Worthy but flawed

The Grudge: Girl in Black

by Mari Asato
Also known as
Ju-on: Kuroi Shôjo
Specifics
2009 / 60m - Japan
Genre
Horror
More info:
rating
2.5*/5.0*
The Grudge: Girl in Black poster

Dubious filler

Ring of Curse

by Mari Asato
Also known as
Gomennasai
Specifics
2011 / 91m - Japan
Genre
Horror
More info:
rating
2.0*/5.0*
Ring of Curse poster

The Boy from Hell

by Mari Asato
Also known as
Jigoku Kozô
Specifics
2004 / 50m - Japan
Genre
Horror
More info:
rating
2.0*/5.0*
The Boy from Hell poster

A lesser film in the Hideshi Hino series. A bit surprising maybe, as Mari Asato is a pretty decent horror director, and should've been capable enough to handle a film like this. Some effects are really too poor though (not to mention utterly pointless, like the car ride in the beginning of the film), which makes it a lot harder to enjoy this one.

Daio is a young boy growing up in a loving family. A carefree car ride turns into a nightmare when the boy sticks his head out of the window and is decapitated by an oncoming truck. The mother is devastated, when she's given the chance to resurrect her son, she leaps at it right away. The boy who returns isn't quite the son she remembered.

If properly executed, it could've been pretty interesting, but this felt more like a poor Teruo Ishii clone with bad CG. The effects are truly poor, the performances are awkward and the horror never really impresses. The film is pretty weird and out there, so there's at least some appeal, but not enough to save The Boy from Hell.