Zan’e: Sunde wa ikenai heya [The Inerasable] (2015)

Zan’e: Sunde wa ikenai heya
Director: Yoshihiro Nakamura
Writer: Ken’ichi Suzuki
Based on: Fuyumi Ono‘s novel
Cast: Yûko Takeuchi, Ai Hashimoto, Kentarô Sakaguchi, Kuranosuke Sasaki, Ken’ichi Takitô
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 28.9.2016
[Review by cornholio.]

I (Yûko Takeuchi) is a famous writer of horror stories and she is always open to stories that her readers send to her. One day she receives a letter from young student Kobu (Ai Hashimoto) who has just moved into a new apartment and is convinced that the apartment is haunted. She asks I for help. I is intrigued and together the two women embark on a research mission to try and find out what happened in Kobu’s apartment.

The Inerasable felt endless to me and as it got its storyline increasingly tangled up in itself, the last remains of my interest evaporated and left me disliking the film intensely.

There could have been a good story in this film. The writer of paranormal/supernatural stories getting involved in one is not really a new conceit, but it usually works and I liked that it was combined with historical research here. The problem was, though, that they were simply not all that clear and consistent with how the plot unfolds. They build theories based on leaps in their thoughts that I simply could not go along with and with every twist and turn, the story has to carry more and more detail without being able to support it, making the entire thing almost incomprehensible after a while. I’m still not sure if the question marks that remain for me are because the questions weren’t answered in the film or because I didn’t get it or missed an explanation.

Plus, sometimes the characters were just wildly stupid. When do you go to explore a possibly haunted house? OF COURSE you do it when it’s dark and you don’t have any proper torches with you. And that was just one thing of many.

Another problem was that the film simply never managed to be scary or tense, despite trying really very hard to be just that. Instead it was way too long and dragged every single second of its existence. I can’t even say that I hated it, though I certainly did not like it, but for me to hate it, it would have had to inspire more energy in me. Instead it seemed to sap all my strength with its glacial pace, leaving me with a beaten sense of dislike.

Summarizing: Skip it.

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