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Film Review: EGG. (2005)

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SYNOPSIS:

A woman sees an egg every time she closes her eyes. One day she sees the egg start to crack and a creature hatch. She struggles to come to terms with her conditions and tries to defeat the creature.

REVIEW:

EGG. is a 2005 horror-fantasy film by the film director/visual artist Yukihiko Tsusumi. It is a bizarre tale and quite unlike anything else out there, but nevertheless a rather enjoyable one.

It’s a story about a young woman by the name Tsukiko Arai (Inuko Inuyama), who is haunted by weird visions of an egg every time she closes her eyes. One day the egg hatches revealing an insect like creature that starts attacking Tsukiko, forcing her to confront her inner monster once and for all.

After reading the synopsis I had no delusions of watching a conventional horror film and sure enough, it was clear from the get go that EGG was something quite unique.  What surprised me though was how much I ended up liking it. It wasn’t the overly pretentious art piece full of incomprehensible symbolism that I feared. Nothing of the sort. It is stylized and yes, some might call it artsy, but it is also somehow very down to earth. It presents this rather outlandish situating in a very matter of fact way, almost as if a monster living in your retina is something that could happen to anyone.  It is a very refreshing take on such an unusual storyline and keeps what otherwise could be an overly heavy piece, very light.

The whole film beautifully shot and a pleasure to watch. The little cut scenes with the egg are artfully executed and the rest of the editing with it’s sharp cuts and repetitive shots do a great job depicting Tsukikos anxiety over the situation. While some of the special effects are not the best of quality, most of scenes with the hatching egg and especially the monster, are a joy to watch. The use of vibrant colours and a simple yet effective set design really makes them pop out from the rest of footage. In horror terms, the monster that hatches isn’t particularly scary. In fact, it looks like some sort of green hybrid between the creature from the Black Lagoon and Predator and has a slightly silly clumsiness to it. However, it suits the tone of the film perfectly and despite it’s clumsiness, is quite skilfully designed.

While EGG. has many surprises to offer, none surprised me quite as much as the subtle humour that runs throughout the film. Starting with scenes of Tsukiko’s fellow office workers all moving in unison bringing to mind the weird world of Roy Andersson and the grey, miserable workforce that features is his comedies, the very unprofessional doctor and off kilter police officers that should all go through some sensitivity training, and later on escalating in to a bizarre Benny Hill like chase scene, the humour is well planned and sets just the right mood for the rest of the film. It can be a hard thing to balance humour within horror, especially if you are not setting out to make a horror comedy, but EGG. succeeds in this task very well. It has just enough humour to keep things light, but not so much that you can’t take the film seriously.

Whether EGG. has some sort of deeper meaning behind it, is hard to say. I could not find an awful lot of information about the film, so I can only speculate as what Mr. Tsusumis motives might have been when making this film. It’s possible the story is some kind of commentary on the more negative aspects of motherhood or maybe the egg and the monster are supposed to work as some sort of metaphor for a menstrual cycle.

Hard to say. In any case, to enjoy EGG. you don’t really need to bother yourself with thinking too deeply into it. Maybe there is a more profound theme (or themes) behind it, maybe not, the fact is that EGG. works perfectly well as one of those unique little indie films with an original idea and beautiful execution. I will admit that it will not be everybodys cup of tea, but even if you don’t enjoy it quite as much as I did, with the running time of only 1h 13minutes, you’re not wasting too much of your time. However, if you are in the mood for something little bit bizarre and offbeat, I recommend giving EGG. a go.

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