Jun 21, 2022

Monday (2000)

Monday is a 2000 Japanese comedy thriller drama film directed by Sabu. The film was featured at the 2000 Berlin Film Festival and won the FIPRESCI Award "for its austere, dark wit and keen eye for human foibles.

A salaryman wakes up in a posh hotel room, totally clueless about how he got there. Slowly, he recalls what happened a day before - attending a funeral, dating but annoying his girlfriend, getting drunk in a pub and getting to know a yakuza and his beautiful mistress, having a gun in his hand and...
Freddy and Krasnaya Movie Review

F: Here we are! Ready and set for another SABU week and today we bring you "Monday"! I will call this a black comedy about two days in the life of a guy that should stay away from alcoholic beverages. The movie opening is very creative and made me think that I had a bogus copy of the movie, but no, we are greeted with a repetition of the weather broadcast until we meet our semi-amnesiac character that will soon try hard to remember what happened after yesterday's catastrophic funeral.

K: Hi Freddy! We continue to enjoy the creativity of the multifaceted SABU. Today we have Monday, a movie from 2000 whose plot is desperately simple - a young man in a black suit wakes up in a hotel room. His head is cracking. Who am I? Where am I? Having found a bag of salt in his pocket, he begins to slowly recall the events of the previous day. SABU made a very original and sort of puzzle movie. It's about good and evil, and everyone fights with the latter to the best of their ability, because evil is an integral part of a person and demons are constantly watching us, waiting for the moment to break into our warm corner. The weapon used in the movie becomes a scepter of power, giving a person the right to administer justice, based on their own ideas of good and evil.

Monday Funeral GIF
I didn't know that pacemakers did that! 😂
F: I have to say that from the earlier SABU movies (90's and early 00's) we watched, this is the best he directed and has written so far. The movie is funny, and Shinichi Tsutsumi, a SABU regular, delivers great physical comedy and moments of contagious laughter. I am just critical of the action in these early movies. It's really lame, and in "Monday" you will witness the worst Police Special Assault Team ever. He did improve hugely on that in his most recent movies. Monday can also drag in some scenes, making the pace a little too slow. For example, I remember the palm reading scene and that could have ended earlier and been a little less awkward.

I'm always happy to find SABU and Takeshi Kitano regulars (Susumu Terajima and Ren Osugi) and see them usually play Yakuza mobsters, as in the case of Ren Osugi in this movie. From now on, I will be sad every time I watch a Japanese movie and none of these guys are in it. 😢

K: Monday has a special aesthetic dimension. This film is very minimalistic in its setting, in which SABU dissects human emotions. And does it masterfully. The funeral scene is the funniest I've ever seen. Monday's character laughs in the face of death, dances solo, and goes for a provocative slow duet. His laughter is brought to despair, which becomes insanely sad or scary. The scene of an idealistic and happy society deserves special praise. It touches with its simplicity and sincerity. Shinichi Tsutsumi plays the role of Takagi excellently. For me, this is his best performance. He is a hero, a coward, a seducer and a philosopher here.  

Funny Solo Dance Gif
Freddy takes note of the sweet moves (Watch full solo dance below).
F: There are three comedic moments that really stand out for me in this crazy movie. That's when the criminal couple stops at the traffic lights after stabbing a poor guy and running over our hero. Even the worst thugs are conditioned by red lights. 😂 The other moment that I burst into laughter was when Takagi was writing his testament and took that first sip from the whisky bottle. It was so unexpected! The camera frame at that moment makes it extremely funny. It was a really nice capture. Finally, there's the whole anti-gun scene. It's just perfect and the US government should use it as propaganda (Watch it below).

I also found the white demons really cool. Now that I come to think of it, that last scene in the movie, maybe, is telling us that supernatural forces are at play. Maybe there's no such thing as coincidences and the will of devils and angels are always at play. 👀 It seems that these slower movies have a tendency to linger on our minds for a few days... 

What do you think about that last moment, Krasnaya? What was SABU trying to say?

K: I think Takagi, after all, wasn't able to kill and stayed in the hotel's room accepting that he messed up.

Don't skip this movie. Despite the fact that it was filmed in 2000, Monday is as relevant as ever. Original and provoking deep emotions.  

Japanese Demon GIF
Creepy bastard.
Freddy's Score: 65/100
Krasnaya's Score: 79/100





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