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.
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.
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?)
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.
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
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.
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.
by John Li