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Genre: Horror/Thriller
Starring: Ryuhei Matsuda, Hitomi, Masanobu Ando, Ren Ohsugi, Yoshio Harada, Shinya Tsukamoto
Director: Shinya Tsukamoto
Rating: M18 (Violence and Gore)
Year Made: 2007




- Trailer
- TV Spots
- Photo Gallery




Languages: Japanese
Subtitles: Chinese/English/Malay
Aspect Ratio: 4x3 Letterbox
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo
Running Time: 1 hr 46 mins
Region Code: NTSC 3
Distributor: Innoform Media




A competent detective Keiko Krishima encounters two mysterious suicides. Somehow the two incidents seem to be connected since the victims dialed the same number with their cell phones just before their deaths. Then one of the victim's wife who was sleeping next to him, testifies that it looked liked someone was attacking him in the dream. Keiko and her colleagues visit the reference archive, looking for a clue to solve the mystery of the two suicides. There, they find information about a man so-called 'Nightmare Detective' who can enter one's dream. Keiko asks him to cooperate with their sting operation but is bluntly refused. The murderer's identity remains a mystery and later on it is found out that he holds the same power to slip into people's dreams.


The premise of this Japanese movie is chilling enough to make me lose my sleep: Someone out there actually has the ability to enter your dreams and make sense of what they mean. You actually need not waste time discussing with your friends, trying to decipher what those dreams reflect about your life.

Ryuhei Matsuda plays this titular character who gets tormented whenever he visits someone’s dreams, only to find out the terrible truths behind what they dream about. The opening scene of the movie introduces us to this man who keeps seeing the creepy long hair of “the daughter he never had”, and the nightmare detective gets mentally drained after deciphering his dream. Following this prologue is a double suicide case which seems to be connected by someone named “0” whom the deceased dialed for before they died. Together with a detective from the police department (played by singer Hitomi), the duo go on a terrifying journey into unknown mindscapes.

The M18 rating for violence and gore is no joke: As I watched the movie after a heavy dinner, I found myself squirming at the squirting blood, the decapitated heads, the mish-mashing of faces, and a very haunting image of a head being ripped open (how else do you think the nightmare detective “get” into people’s heads?)

As for the plot, the confusing storyline did not manage to engage for too long. There also wasn’t any big revelation to make you jump or feel that the screenwriters were being innovative. But being a horror thriller, the material in the 106-minute movie is enough to suffice.

Director Shinya Tsukamoto manages to make Matsuda look plagued enough by the demons he has to face everyday. And being a pop singer, Hitomi looks cute and attractive enough to make male viewers happy.

There is a sequel in the works, and we are thinking that while it won’t provide many surprises in terms of originality, the gore and violence factor would probably please audiences who find thrill in all things bloody red.


This Code 3 DVD does not contain too many features: only a Trailer, three TV Spots and a Photo Gallery.


The disc’s visual transfer manages to have you see what’s happening in the dark, while the soundtrack is presented in its original Japanese Dolby Digital 2.0 format.



Review by John Li



Alternative Opinion:

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This review is made possible with the kind support from InnoForm


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