One of the films that established Miike among the more serious film fans in the West. Audition is a film split in two distinct parts. A rather dim and lifeless first hour that lulls the audience asleep, setting them up for a crazier and more outrageous second half. It's a simple trick, but it sure is effective.
Aoyama is ready for a new relationship, seven years after his wife died. A friend invites him to a film audition to look for prospects. There he meets Asami, a young ballet dancer hoping to make it big. Aoyama is smitten by Asami and decides to ask her out on a date. Asami isn't as sweet as she looks though.
With every revision, the first hour gets a bit more tiresome to sit through, but at least the payoff of the second half makes a big difference. It's really not as crazy or over-the-top as some of Miike's other films, but the contrast does its job. Solid performances, some great horror scenes and a sprawling finale make this a worthy Miike.