Sunday, November 21, 2010
Well in the tradition of Saw and the like we get this little J-Horror cash in on the popularity of the "Torture Porn" popularity. Death Tube is a Rare website that only functions for one week each year showcasing murders in you tube format, This site garners quite a few loyal followers, Among these followers is a young man named Inoyue who after falling asleep watching the site wakes up in a emptied warehouse room with nothing but a Rubik cube and a laptop. Shortly realizing he has been taken in to play in the Death Tube games.He realizes he is not alone as there are seven other competitors showcased on separate screens on his laptop. The host Ponkichi is a cartoon bear who gives the victims their directions to survive and from there we are treated to a series of games similar to the Saw series yet not brutal traps like that series these games are of wits and skill and failure leads to death. On the surface this film could be seen as a typical rip off of the Saw franchise but, It can be taken as a social commentary on humanities craving to see the worst things they can and peoples lust and curiosities to watch death, Making one think if a site like this would be successful or not and in reality sadly I believe it would. Just look at how successful the faces of death series of films were and videos on tube sites that show executions and more recently the popularity of the 3 guys 1 hammer vid that has surfaced which is nothing but an actual snuff film three teens made in hopes of becoming famous through murder. This film is a bit goofy at times and the gore is pretty lackluster especially coming from a Japanese film of this ilk. The Children show like bear I thought was a nice touch as it makes the film a little more light hearted yet creepy at the same time, and the characters in the film do a good job drawing you in but to me it just seems like something was missing. Perhaps it was the payoff killings being so tame and uneventful, The film keeps you watching and is paced extremely well for a two hour film but it just doesn't seem like anything special and just kinda there. I was expecting allot more especially after hearing that the makers of this film had made "Grotesque" which is a rare J-Horror film that was banned recently after being deemed to brutal for distribution and the fact that there was no IMDB page for this one lead me to believe this would be just as brutal if not worse given the subject matter and it just fell short of my own sick expectations. So after viewing this one it does accomplish getting it's point across about the depravity of our human culture by showing text going across the screen of commenting viewers wanting to see more and rooting for deaths of the contestants rather than wanting to see them survive but I think a film like this , that is based on violence solely it should have had some gruesome payoffs in order to drive the point home. This becomes just a good story with strong overtones with no real reason to keep going after the weak killings. Is it a bad film ? No, But I think it could have easily been a classic and far better than Saw if they would have just done a little more with it . Also although the characters are interesting , there is really no reason why all of them were chosen and I believe that was an important sub plot that they completely ignored in this one. After viewing this one, I will say that I do have high expectations of there banned film because I would like to see what these guys could do if they amp the violence up a bit so, I will be checking that one out soon. In closing this film has a good premise , Decent acting, Some creepy scenarios and the meaning behind it is good as well but as I said before it just falls short of nailing it home with the lack of payoff's.
3 out of 5