Tomie: Replay (2000) Movie Review
Written By: JEH
Edited By: Grave Reviews Staff
Director: Tomijiro Mitsuishi
Producers: Yasuhiko Higashi
Writers: Junji Ito (manga), Satoru Tamaki
Date Released: February 11, 2000
Sayaka Yamaguchi as Yumi Morita
Mai Hōshō as Tomie Kawakami
Yōsuke Kubozuka as Fumihito Sato
Kenichi Endo as Dr. Tachibana
Shun Sugata as Kenzo Morita
Masatoshi Matsuo as Takashi Takeshi
Rating = 2/5 Graves
***May contain some spoilers***
Desperately searching for her missing father, Yumi Morita (Sayaka Yamaguchi) follows the clues left in his notebook. She discovers the existence of Tomie, a woman who cannot die. As she continues to find answers, she meets Fumihito Sato (Yōsuke Kubozuka), whose friend was also victimized by a woman named Tomie. Together, Yumi and Fumihito must save their loved ones from Tomie while fighting for their lives and sanity.
The works of Junji Ito is known for its creative approach in body horror. So, expect to see interestingly weird scenes, including an adult head coming out of a child’s torso. However, unlike its source material, the movie does not go all-out with the gory scenes. Although there are scenes that feature decapitation or jumping off a building, there’s no blood or guts spilling. Instead, we get unimpressive effects or none at all, which feels like a waste of good material.
The Grave Review
Tomie is the beloved femme fatale created by Junji Ito, so it isn’t a surprise that her story paved way for more movie sequels. The manga does a good job building up her character and the environment around her, so the question is, do the movies give her story justice? Let us take a look at the third sequel in the Tomie series.
Tomie: Replay (2000) is arguably the most faithful adaptation compared to its predecessors. Similar to two Tomie manga stories, Tomie regenerates inside a young girl, grows in a lab, and gets experimented on. However, instead of focusing on the horrifying experimentations Tomie experienced, we get introduced to two new characters, Yumi and Fumihito. Here, an unfamiliar story gets explored.
Having the story revolve around Yumi and not Tomie feels kind of disappointing. For such an interesting character to have the least screen time feels like a waste. Yes, we get to know more about Tomie through Yumi’s research, but it almost feels unsatisfying. Wouldn’t you rather see the action for yourself instead of hearing telltales from strangers?
The acting also feels a little off and unnatural. Not to mention the post-production screams that can get distracting. Unfortunately, the poor execution of these important elements results in a less-sinister atmosphere. The movie wants to be disturbing, but the visuals and the audio fail to keep up most of the time.
Despite these shortcomings, Tomie: Replay (2000) is still fun to watch. Japanese horror never fails to surprise creatively and this movie is a good example of it. However, it is highly recommended to read the manga first before watching the movies. Trust us, the manga will be worth it.
For the above reasons, Grave Reviews gives Tomie: Replay (2000) two graves out of five graves.
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