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Confessions (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version) Blu-ray Region A

Matsu Takako (Actor) | Kimura Yoshino (Actor) | Okada Masaki (Actor) | Nakashima Tetsuya (Director)
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All Editions Rating: Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10 (1)

YesAsia Editorial Description

"This is my revenge."

Based on the award-winning novel by Minato Kanae, Confessions (a.k.a. Kokuhaku) is an emotionally devastating drama about a teacher's terrifying plan to avenge her daughter's murder. Writer-director Nakashima Tatsuya presents a strong indictment against modern Japanese society, portraying a dark inner world of modern Japanese youths without any mercy, exploring the horrific lengths one will go in the name of vengeance, fame, and friendship. With films like Memories of Matsuko under his belt, Nakashima is no stranger to telling dark stories with strong visual aesthetics. Seamlessly combining a pulsating soundtrack, slick editing, and powerful images, Confessions takes Nakashima's filmmaking skills to exciting new heights.

Matsu Takako (Villon's Wife) - whom Nakashima calls his first and only choice for the lead - takes on her most challenging dramatic role yet as the stone-faced teacher that will go to any lengths to get the justice she believes she deserves. Equally powerful are Okada Masaki (Halfway) as an enthusiastic young teacher, Kimura Yoshino (Sakuran) as an overprotective mother, and 37 young actors (picked from a pool of 1,000 applicants) that make up the middle school class in focus. Despite the dark nature of the story, the film stayed on the top of the Japanese box office for four consecutive weeks due to strong word-of-mouth, even outgrossing Iron Man 2 by the end of its run. Equally successful with film critics, Confessions earned 12 prizes at the 2010 Japan Academy Prize, and it is also representing Japan at the 2011 Academy Awards' Best Foreign Film competition.

On her last day as the teacher of her middle school class, Moriguchi (Takako Matsu) makes a startling confession in front of her class: Her daughter has been murdered, and that she plans to take vengeance against the two students that did it. The confession itself becomes part of the plan, as the two young killers become victims of the students' constant bullying. From the inner confessions of the two young killers, a sympathetic classmate, and the overprotective mother of one of the killers (Kimura Yoshino), the turmoil and personal torment of each character are slowly revealed. Meanwhile, Moriguchi slowly watches the disintegration of her class as she plans the final stage of her revenge.

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Technical Information

Product Title: Confessions (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version) 告白 (Blu-ray) (中英文字幕) (香港版) 告白 (Blu-ray) (中英文字幕) (香港版) 告白 Confessions (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)
Also known as: Kokuhaku Kokuhaku Kokuhaku Kokuhaku Kokuhaku
Artist Name(s): Matsu Takako (Actor) | Kimura Yoshino (Actor) | Okada Masaki (Actor) 松隆子 (Actor) | 木村佳乃 (Actor) | 岡田將生 (Actor) 松隆子 (Actor) | 木村佳乃 (Actor) | 冈田将生 (Actor) 松たか子 (Actor) | 木村佳乃 (Actor) | 岡田将生 (Actor) 마츠 타카코 (Actor) | Kimura Yoshino (Actor) | Okada Masaki (Actor)
Director: Nakashima Tetsuya 中島 哲也 中岛哲也 中島哲也 Nakashima Tetsuya
Blu-ray Region Code: A - Americas (North, Central and South except French Guiana), Korea, Japan, South East Asia (including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) What is it?
Release Date: 2011-03-03
Language: Japanese
Subtitles: English, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese
Place of Origin: Japan
Aspect Ratio: 1.78 : 1, Widescreen
Closed Captioning: Yes
Sound Information: Dolby Digital 5.1, 7.1, DTS-HD Master Audio
Disc Format(s): Blu-ray, 25 GB - Single Layer
Video Codecs: AVC (MPEG-4 Part 10)
Rating: III
Duration: 107 (mins)
Publisher: CN Entertainment Ltd.
Package Weight: 120 (g)
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1024060629

Product Information

* Special Features:
- Trailer
- Photo Gallery

Director: Nakashima Tetsuya

A psychological thriller of a grieving mother turned cold-blooded avenger with a twisty master plan to pay back those who were responsible for her daughter's death.
Additional Information may be provided by the manufacturer, supplier, or a third party, and may be in its original language

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This film has won 1 award(s) and received 6 award nomination(s). All Award-Winning Asian Films

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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "Confessions (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)"

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February 22, 2011

Commercial director Tetsuya Nakashima's film career truly took off with Kamikaze Girls and Memories of Matsuko, two potentially dreary art films that he made accessible for a broader audience through aggressively colorful visuals and over-the-top eccentric characters. Nakashima's latest film Confessions, based on the novel by Kanae Minato, still employs the music video/commercial tricks that Nakashima picked up over the years, but it no longer tries to undermine its serious subject matter with explosions of colors.

Taking place in a merciless world where unspeakable acts can be committed with almost any excuse, Confessions eschews the use of color to distract from its dark subject matter. Nakashima instead goes with a plain, almost monochrome color palate that matches the horror of his dark suburban drama. This is a bold commercial filmmaking gamble that pays off handsomely for Nakashima and his team.

Besides refusing to let visuals drive his film again, Nakashima highlights his strengths as a scriptwriter, starting the film with a 30-minute monologue by Yuko (Takako Matsu), the teacher of a seemingly normal contemporary high school class. After announcing her resignation as a teacher, she begins to lay out the details surrounding her young daughter's death and her ultimate intentions. She knows two of her students murdered her daughter, and she has already begun her revenge. However, the script, like the novel, then changes perspective completely to the two perpetrators: a spoiled child with an over-protective mother (Yoshino Kimura) and an arrogant young scientist with a sick imagination to go along with a serious Oedipus Complex. Nakashima puts together the seemingly unrelated pieces of this puzzle to reveal an intriguing whydunit, exploring why the two problem children committed their crime, and the aftermath of them being exposed.

Most filmmakers would favor a more normal style of filmmaking after settling into the story, but Nakashima continues in his dynamic MTV style as the film goes to an even darker and more violent place than its opening suggests. Even though the film was a major commercial success in Japan, there's no doubt that its "no one under 15" rating was well-justified. Confessions is intensely disturbing for a mainstream film. It's hard to imagine a normal cineplex audience being able to sit through Confessions without a director like Nakashima at the helm. In fact, it's hard to believe a major studio like Toho would dare to make the film without Nakashima's stylistic treatment of the material.

Parts of the film are brutal and violent (made even more disturbing since they involve teenagers), but these acts are mainly shown in a stylized fashion. Nakashima mostly avoids showing the violence explicitly, but he doesn't shy away from presenting what's needed to get the idea across. Despite the adult cast - namely Matsu, Kimura and Masaki Okada - getting all the awards attention, Yukido Nishii and Kaoru Fujiwaru are equally good as the disturbed murderers, as is Ai Hashimoto as a female classmate who sympathizes with one of the two killers.

Nakashima lightens the dark subject matter somewhat by making the film's world appear to exist in a hyperreality. However, that storytelling choice does partially hurt the film's social relevance, as the story becomes too far removed from our world to do much more than shock. Nevertheless, Confessions is an accomplished piece of contemporary filmmaking. After Matsuko, Nakashima seems to have perfected the ability to make soul-crushingly pessimistic material extremely watchable, achieving a balance between visually enticing an audience and retaining his material's heavy impact.

Nakashima even ends the film with a wicked, darkly comedic twist that will likely please the cynics who truly want to see justice for Yuko. With Confessions, Nakashima has finally created a film that will elevate him far beyond his reputation as merely a pop director. At the same time, the film is a great ride for pop filmmaking fans that refuses to let them off easily, either. Nakashima has it both ways here; Confessions is the cinematic equivalent of a punch in the gut, but it also comes with an adrenaline shot.

by Kevin Ma -

January 14, 2011

This professional review refers to Confessions (DVD) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)
Japanese writer director Tetsuya Nakashima follows up his critically acclaimed cult hits Kamikaze Girls and Memories of Matsuko with something considerably darker in the form of Confessions. Based upon Kanae Minato's award winning debut novel and dealing with themes of bullying, revenge and savage murder, the film is an exceptionally cruel affair, all the more so thanks to Nakashima's typically idiosyncratic approach and gorgeous visuals. The film has been a massive hit in Japan, both commercially and critically, and has already been selected as the country's official entry in the Best Foreign Film category of the 83rd Annual Academy Awards. The film has also been enjoying success at international festivals, having recently had its UK premiere at the 2010 London October Frightfest.

The film is essentially an ensemble piece, revolving around Takako Matsu (recently in K20: Legend of the Mask and Villon's Wife) as Yuko Moriguchi, a teacher whose three year old daughter is found drowned in the school's swimming pool. As she reveals at the start of the film when announcing her imminent retirement, she knows the identity of the two killers, who are in fact two teenage boys from her middle school class. With the police having dismissed the case as an accident, she puts into motion an intricate plan of revenge and psychological warfare designed to utterly destroy their lives and to force them to realise the impact of their actions.

Tetsuya Nakashima is one of the few genuine auteurs to be working in cinema today, and as such, it shouldn't be too much of a surprise to hear that Confessions is a film which defies genre expectations and which refuses to play out along conventional lines. Whilst the subject matter is considerably darker than his last couple of outings, the film is immediately recognisable as being in Nakashima's style, and it should be remembered that prior to the success of Kamikaze Girls he had tackled grim material before with Beautiful Sunday and bullying with Happy Go Lucky. Here, he delivers what is certainly one of the bleakest and disturbing films of recent years, revolving entirely around human weakness, arrogance and cruelty. The film begins with incredibly intensity as Yuko delivers a shattering speech to her uninterested class, which immediately thrusts the viewer into uncomfortable and unknown territory, as she not only announces the identity of the two killers, but proceeds to make it clear that she herself is about as far as from a righteous revenge seeking heroine as it is possible to get.

This sets the scene perfectly for the rest of the film, which rather than focusing upon her and her vengeance, shifts between a variety of different characters who all in one way or another have been involved in or affected by her daughter's death. Since this naturally involves the killers themselves, it takes the film to some very dark places indeed, unflinchingly exploring the human psyche and propensity to prey upon the weak. Yuko's plan, made all the more awful for the fact that it relies so coldly upon the latent callousness and sadism of her class to unwittingly carry it out, makes for gripping viewing, especially during the incredible tension of the final act, though the viewer is at no time overtly manipulated into sympathising with her. Indeed, Nakashima goes some way to providing a cold, but horribly human and believable depiction of all his characters, never casting a judgemental eye and laying equal responsibility for the chaotic and self destructive society at the heart of the film at the feet of the teachers, the students and parents. This inevitably gives the film a disturbingly amoral feel, not least since it openly eschews any hope of redemption, personal development, or even of catharsis, right through to its explosive conclusion. By constructing such a convincing world of savagery, the film makes for one of the most engaging and bleak revenge themed efforts in recent memory, even more perfect and hard hitting in its coffin black coldness than Park Chan Wook's classic Sympathy for Mr Vengeance.

However, with downbeat tales of gritty payback still enjoying great popularity, its Nakashima's direction and handling of the film which really makes it stand out. Although it might have been expected that he would have toned down the visual style and wild techniques that characterised his last couple of films, here he simply adapts them to the material. Adding to this is a very involved soundtrack, featuring the likes of Radiohead, acclaimed Japanese experimental rock band Boris, and this year's Mercury Prize winners, The XX, which at times does take it into music video territory. As might be expected, Nakashima does mine the drama for irony and a certain amount of humour, of the blackest kind, and the film is frequently very funny, in suitably bitter fashion, even managing to work in a musical number of sorts. These moments do offset the tone somewhat, balanced skilfully with some pretty intense scenes of violence and sudden flashes of gore, most of which have all the more impact for being delivered without any real ceremony or build up.

Surprisingly, this approach works very well, helping to create an otherworldly, at times almost theatrical feel which adds a hint of satire and makes the film's social commentary and reflection even more effective. The film is quite stunning in places, packed with gorgeously overblown imagery that with a use of dark and light, and more importantly of dull grey that immaculately fits its themes. Though the overall effect is a multi layered assault on the senses, at times Nakashima may well go too far for some viewers, as he tempts the attention away from the horror of the proceedings, lovingly coating the malevolence with seductive sugar, highlighting the way that the smiling faces of the characters and of society in general are hiding awful secrets and desires.

Although its chances of an Oscar in 2011 are debatable, Confessions is easily one of the year's best films, and another masterpiece from Tetsuya Nakashima, surely pushing him from being a mere cult favourite to a director of real note. Due to its subject matter and flashy visual content, the film may well not be for audiences of all tastes, though for those willing to brave its emotional express elevator to hell, it makes for stunning and devastating viewing.

by James Mudge -

Feature articles that mention "Confessions (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)"

This original content has been created by or licensed to, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of

Customer Review of "Confessions (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)"

Average Customer Rating for All Editions of this Product: Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10 (1)

See all my reviews

March 16, 2011

This customer review refers to Confessions (DVD) (English Subtitled) (UK Version)
2 people found this review helpful

Revenge is served!!! Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
Confessions is the type of film that lingers with you long after a viewing. Typical of Japanese cinema it is clever, though provoking, witty, controversial and thoroughly refreshing compared to the typical output of western cinema.

Telling of teacher whose daughter was murdered by her students it follows her ultimate revenge on two students who are too young to face legal justice. Taking matters into her own hands the revenge she inflicts is far sweeter than any prison sentence.

Focusing on different characters and their own mini confessions the people in this film are surprising and original. There is no good and bad and you find you must take sides either with a sorrowful yet hate filled teacher whose daughter was murdered or a disturbed yet lonely school boy who has become a murderer. For me the choice was easy...

Directed by Tetsuya Nakashima, whose other films include Kamikaze girls and Memories of Matsuko , Confessions is a step into a far darker world than any of his previous films. This is not a comedy like the others and it is not filled with ornate sets and vivid colours and costumes. However it is beautifully directed and has a wonderfully haunting soundtrack featuring artists as varied as J Pop girl group sensation AKB48 to little known British indie group The XX. The subtlety of Confessions shows that Nakashima is truly progressing into one of Japan’s best directors, he can do the funny flashy stuff and now shows another serious and sensory side to his work.

This has to be one the best Japanese films I have seen in ages (and I’ve seen a lot!!!) and it’s one of the few films where witnessing the destruction of one life brings a happy smile to your face.... justice is served!!!!
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