Written by: Michael Den Boer on June 7th, 2008
Theatrical Release Date: Japan, August 4th, 2000
Director: Daisuke Yamanouchi
Writer: Daisuke Yamanouchi
Cast: Miyuki Katô, Yukio Kokago, Salmon Sakeyama, Yuka Takahashi, Yuuken Yoshida
DVD released: June 3rd, 2008
Approximate running time: 83 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1 Full Frame
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo Japanese
DVD Release: Unearthed Films
Region Coding: Region 1 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.99
Synopsis: Four strangers compete in a series of games that tests their endurance and mental fortitude. The game is called “King” and each contestant draws a card. The player who ends ups with the King card decides what the game will be and who will be participating. The game becomes more brutal and sadistic as each round progresses. The winner is decided when they are last one standing and their prize is twenty million yen.
Red Room 2 picks right up where Red Room left off. Director Daisuke Yamanouchi creates many interesting visual set pieces like the film’s opening of a woman licking a light bulb while a man facing jacks off. Red Room 2 features many scenes just like this opening moment with each new game that the contestants play becoming more grotesque and exaggerated then the previous game. These games include a woman drinking a bowl of vomit, a man removing a woman’s fetus and a reverse rape scene where the woman is the aggressor. Many of the games featured in the film have a kind of Pink film feel to them even though they are far from being erotic.
The look of the film far exceeds its minimal production values. Director Daisuke Yamanouchi creates a fascinating world that is not just a series of sadistic scenes but a world in which the characters performing these acts of brutality actually have some deep via their back-stories which are revealed as the film progresses. The games played by throughout the film are not for the faint of heart and they come very close to losing their edge near the end of the film. The films’ ending is one of the film’s most shocking moments and while there are hints throughout the film building up to it that doesn’t lessen the films conclusion. Gore hounds will also be pleased to know that there is plenty of blood in this film and that when it gets going it flows in rivers of red.
Ultimately Red Room 2 is never an easy ride with nihilistic view on the human race and how far one would go when they have nothing left to live for.
Shot on DV Red Room 2 transfer looks pretty good with strong primary colors and razor sharp detail throughout. There are no problems with compression or artifacts and edge enhancement while noticeable in a few scenes in minimal. Overall this is one of the stronger digital video sourced transfers that I have seen to date.
This release comes with one audio option a Dolby Digital stereo mix in the films native language of Japanese and removable English subtitles have been included. The subtitles are error free, easy to read and follow. The audio mix is in exceptional shape with no audio defects. The mix sounds evenly balanced and robust.
Extras include trailers for Red Room and Red Room 2. Other extras include a photo gallery with stills from Red Room 2. Rounding out the extras are trailers for Philosophy of the Knife and Frankenhooker.
Overall Unearthed Films gives Red Room 2 a solid audio/video presentation that more than makes up for the lack of extra content.