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Cold Fish

Cold Fish

Tsumetai Nettaigyo

Sion Sono

  • Country: Japan
  • Year: 2010
  • Language: Japanese
  • Producer: Yoshinori Chiba, Toshiki Kimura
  • Executive Producer: Akufumi Sugihara
  • Screenplay: Sion Sono, Yoshiki Takahashi
  • Runtime: 144
  • Programmes:

Equal parts black humour and bloody dementia in this true crime portrait of a Japanese tropical fish dealer responsible for over forty murders.

Crime & ThrillerJapanViolence

screening times

    • Sunday September 12
    • 10:00:00 PM
    • AMC 6
    • Friday September 17
    • 8:30:00 PM
    • AMC 3
    • Sunday September 19
    • 12:00:00 PM

Note: indicates Premium Screening.

official description

Quiet and meek, Shamoto (Mitsuru Fukikoshi) has been beaten into submission by the mundane demands of everyday life. He’s in an awkward relationship with his beautiful but shy second wife, who still hasn’t been accepted by his rebellious teenaged daughter, Mitsuko. Shamoto’s one remaining joy is running a small tropical fish store.

When Mitsuko is caught shoplifting, the friendly Murata (Denden) helps her distraught parents by settling things with the store’s manager. Murata, who owns a tropical fish store called Amazon Gold, immediately forms a bond with fellow fish connoisseur Shamoto and offers to help his wayward daughter, giving her a job that comes conveniently with room and board. The conflict between Mitsuko and her stepmom appears to be finally solved.

Shamoto is drawn into business with the outgoing Murata, unaware that behind his friendly demeanor lurks a dangerous sociopath. Murata and his wife have a history of fraud and murder, disposing of their prey in an elaborate, ritualistic and grisly manner. Taken in by Murata’s easygoing charm, Shamoto realizes the man’s true nature too late and becomes implicated in the madman’s bloody crimes.

Madness is a familiar theme for Sion Sono, who has made nearly twenty films in the last thirty years. His work remains relatively unknown outside of fanboy and J-Horror circles, where films like Suicide Club and Love Exposure (his four-hour-long opus of fetishism, romance and religion) have gained cult status.

Cold Fish sees Sono reaching an impressive new level. He shows firm control of this gruesome subject; he never allows it to stray into exploitation or sensationalism and skillfully balances tense drama with outrageous black humour. What makes the film all the more shocking is that it is based on the real case of a serial killer who murdered more than fifty people. While Fukikoshi whimpers and cowers at the horrific crimes playing out before him, Denden steals the show with his gregarious, alpha-male portrayal of the cold-blooded Murata – the Japanese equivalent of Sweeney Todd.

Colin Geddes

director bio

Sion Sono was born in Toyokawa City,Japan and studied briefly atHousei University. He directed the short films I am Sion Sono! (85) and A Man'sHanamichi (87) and co-wrote, directed, and starred in his feature debut, Bicycle Sighs (90). He went on to directthe feature films The Room (94), KeikoDesukedo (97) and the documentary/fiction hybrid Utsushimi (00). Sono’s other features include Suicide Club (01) Into aDream (05), Love Exposure (08)and Cold Fish (10).

full credits

Principal Cast: Mitsuru Fukikoshi, Denden, Asuka Kurosawa, Megumi Kagurazaka, Tetsu Watanabe
Yoshinori Chiba, Toshiki Kimura
Executive Producer:
Akufumi Sugihara
Shinya Kimura
Junichi Ito
Hajime Komiya
Tomohide Harada
Production Designer:
Takashi Matsuzuka
International Sales Agent:
 Nikkatsu Corporation
Production Company:
Nikkatsu Corporation
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