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Dainipponjin (DVD) (English Subtitled) (2-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version) DVD Region 3

Matsumoto Hitoshi (Actor, Director) | UA (Actor) | Takeuchi Riki (Actor) | Itao Itsuji
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All Editions Rating: Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10 (1)

YesAsia Editorial Description

Every year, Japan throws out one or two oddball films that cause critics the world over to scratch their heads and clap their hands vigorously. Dainipponjin (a.k.a. Big Man Japan) is one of those films, except even by Japanese Cinema standards, it's in a category all its own. Popular manzai comedian Matsumoto Hitoshi - billed by the deliberately misspelled name Matumoto Hitosi - directs and stars in this giant-sized, singularly bizarre comedy. Matsumoto spent five years preparing for this debut feature, and it was certainly time well spent because Dainipponjin is as wildly imaginative, outlandish, and insane as they come. A mockumentary about a loser superhero, Dainipponjin takes an absurd premise and runs with it, presenting ridiculous characters, outrageous storylines, and over-the-top CGI in completely deadpan fashion. Hilarious beyond words, Dainipponjin is madcap comedy at its most genius.

Dai Saito (Matsumoto Hitoshi) may look like your average middle-aged chump, but he's actually a superhero. When electrocuted, Dai Saito transforms into the gigantic, boxer-wearing Dai Nipponjin, doing battle against unsavory super-sized monsters like Jumpy Baddie, Baby Baddie, and of course Smelly Baddie. Saving Japan over and over again is all well and good, but Dai Saito doesn't get much in return. Estranged from his ex-wife and daughter, he ekes out a boring life with a stray cat in a rundown house, waiting for the Department of Defense to call him to superhero action (for middling pay). All his battles are broadcasted on television, but the public couldn't care less for his patently unstylish look and his neighbors all-out hate him. With plummeting TV ratings and bleak prospects ahead, can this superhero save himself?

This edition comes with making of, interviews, and Cannes Film Festival footage.

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Technical Information

Product Title: Dainipponjin (DVD) (English Subtitled) (2-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version) 大日本人 (DVD) (雙碟版) (香港版) 大日本人 (DVD) (双碟版) (香港版) Dainipponjin (DVD) (English Subtitled) (2-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version) Dainipponjin (DVD) (English Subtitled) (2-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version)
Also known as: Dai Nipponjin / Big Man Japan Dai Nipponjin / Big Man Japan Dai Nipponjin / Big Man Japan Dai Nipponjin / Big Man Japan Dai Nipponjin / Big Man Japan
Artist Name(s): Matsumoto Hitoshi (Actor) | UA (Actor) | Takeuchi Riki (Actor) | Itao Itsuji | Kamiki Ryunosuke 松本人志 (Actor) | UA (Actor) | 竹內力 (Actor) | 板尾創路 | 神木隆之介 松本人志 (Actor) | UA (Actor) | 竹内力 (Actor) | 板尾创路 | 神木隆之介 松本人志 (Actor) | UA (Actor) | 竹内力 (Actor) | 板尾創路 | 神木隆之介 Matsumoto Hitoshi (Actor) | UA (Actor) | Takeuchi Riki (Actor) | Itao Itsuji | Kamiki Ryunosuke
Director: Matsumoto Hitoshi 松本人志 松本人志 松本人志 Matsumoto Hitoshi
Release Date: 2008-10-28
Language: Japanese
Subtitles: English, Traditional Chinese
Place of Origin: Japan
Picture Format: NTSC What is it?
Aspect Ratio: 1.78 : 1, Letterboxed
Sound Information: Dolby Digital 5.1
Disc Format(s): DVD
Region Code: 3 - South East Asia (including Hong Kong, S. Korea and Taiwan) What is it?
Rating: IIA
Duration: 114 (mins)
Publisher: Kam & Ronson Enterprises Co Ltd
Package Weight: 120 (g)
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1012920099

Product Information

* Disc2輯錄:

Director: Matsumoto Hitoshi


Daisato, a middle-aged loser and subject of a "documentary", is the fifth generation of a superhero family desperately trying to hold on to the dying art of super-heroics. The film is a deadpan throwback to giant superhero of old, with Daisato struggling to win over the masses in the age of Gross National Cool. Popular comedian Mastumoto directs himself in a hilarious performance that touches on Japan's relationship with its own culture. Look for pop diva UA in a small role.
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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "Dainipponjin (DVD) (English Subtitled) (2-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version)"

November 26, 2008

Meet Dai Saito. He's your typical, working class shlub in Japan. There's never quite enough money, there are few prospects for the future, he hardly ever see his daughter, and his grandfather suffers from dementia. But there's more! Dai Saito is also Dai Nipponjin, the sixth generation superhero who grows to enormous size when exposed to electricity to battle the monsters rampaging across Japan! Too bad nobody cares ...

A famous manzai comic in Japan, Hitosi Matumoto's Dai Nipponjin may just bring the man some well deserved recognition abroad. Shot in a faux documentary style with crews following the day to day life of this unlikely superhero Dai Nipponjin is an absurdist treat, a sly parody of both day to day working class life and the Japanese television superheros of yore all played with a deliciously dry - almost arid - sense of humor.

The center of the film is Dai Saito, the man present in every scene - even the ones he is not physically in - as every line of dialogue, every piece of action ultimately refers back to him. And more than anything else Dai is just bored. Bored of his life, bored of his work, bored of everything, a fact reflected in the lacklustre way he goes about his battles - battles broadcast every night on late late night TV, where rating are sliding badly, and financed by a series of sponsors who brand their logos across his body. He spends his day in the park. Or eating Power Noodles. Or doing a whole lot of nothing, really, just waiting for the Department of Defense to call and loet him know that his services are required.

And when the call comes? It's off to the local power plant where he steps into an enormous pair of underpants and is jolted with high voltage electricity through his nipples so that he can head out to bop evil over the head with his great big stick. And the evil? There's the Squeezing Baddie, with it's bad comb over. There's the jumping Baddie with the face of Riki Takeuchi planted on the top of a single, muscular leg. There's the Smelly Baddie, with an odor the strength of ten thousand human feces. You get the point ...

Matumoto has, quite possibly, the most incredibly deadpan approach to absurdist humor in the history of the world. Nobody cracks a smile. Nobody winks at the camera. The whole thing plays out with a sort of ho-hum, another day at the office vibe that heightens the ridiculousness of it all to even further heights. It probably doesn't have quite enough zip to win a truly widespread audience beyond the festival and cult DVD circuit, but for those who appreciate wry Japanese humor, this is pure gold.

by Todd Brown - Twitchfilm.net

Editor's Pick of "Dainipponjin (DVD) (English Subtitled) (2-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version)"

Picked By dian
See all this editor's picks

January 21, 2009

Life of a giant monster-fighter
Daisato likes things that expand when they are needed, such as his trusted foldable umbrella, tasty dehydrated seaweed, and especially his alter ego, Dai Nipponjin (literally, "Big Japanese"), who powers up into a gigantic vigilante as big as a high-rise building whenever Japan is threatened by humongous monsters (or what he calls "baddies").

Sadly, that is not a feeling shared by his fellow countrymen. They have taken the protection offered by their loyal defender for granted. People protest about the collateral damage that he causes. Some think he brings more harm than good. Others just don't care about him. The TV program about his latest exploits gets bumped to the 2am slot due to poor ratings. Even his wife divorced him and took their little daughter away. Daisato lives a lonely life with only the company of a stray cat - an identity he readily identifies with.

Daisato inherits the national security mantle passed from grandpa to papa and then him, and is now the only frontline member of the "Department of Baddie Prevention" backed by the government. Whenever he is informed of an impending monster attack, he goes to a nearby power plant and muddles through the pre-transformation rituals, then gets electrocuted to become this scantily-clad, club-wielding, tattooed warrior known as Dai Nipponjin. Ever wonder how a superhero hulks up without bursting his briefs apart? Here Dai Nipponjin offers a peculiar but practical solution that is pure genius!

Fighting monsters is a dangerous enough job, and the demands from Daisato's agent and sponsors aren't making life any easier for him. His routine job consists of fighting monsters, and longer stretches of time spent waiting for the next monsters. Sometimes he visits his dementia-afflicted grandpa at the retirement home. Sometimes he seeks solace at a hostess bar. Once in a few months, he gets to take his daughter to the playground. This guy's job requires him to be ready to sacrifice himself for the greater good at all times. Shouldn't we be ashamed when we think our jobs suck?

TV comedian Matsumoto Hitoshi makes his feature film directing debut with Dai Nipponjin, for which he also produces, writes the script, and plays the protagonist. His script touches upon many issues, from anti-US sentiment to rants about the younger generation's lack of respect towards tradition. What makes this film so cool is the innovative and surreal combination of mockumentary footages of ordinary-looking folk followed around and interviewed by a filming crew with wildly imaginative SFX sequences of larger-than-life superhero fighting monsters. The resulting blend of arthouse sensibilities and blockbuster filmmaking rightfully earned the film warm reception at the Cannes Film Festival.

Matsumoto really takes his time in playing his trump cards. The first monster is unleashed around 20 minutes into the film, after long scenes of all talk and no action. This first monster is absolutely killer, both in terms of its destructive power and its ridiculous look. The thing has the head of a mean-looking, middle-aged man atop a long neck on a ring-shaped body with elastic-band limbs, its few strands of hair flapping as it moves. And this baby lays eggs! If you think this is insane, Daisato goes on to meet several more monsters over the course of the film, and suffice it to say that the bizarrometer amps up further still, with each creature looking more and more over-the-top and positively outrageous. But Daisato, just like we the audience, has to show a little patience before the next one shows up.
This original content has been created by or licensed to YesAsia.com, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of YesAsia.com.

Customer Review of "Dainipponjin (DVD) (English Subtitled) (2-Disc Edition) (Hong Kong Version)"

Average Customer Rating for All Editions of this Product: Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10 (1)

Kevin Kennedy
See all my reviews

July 14, 2010

This customer review refers to Big Man Japan (DVD) (US Version)
Japan's downmarket superhero Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
If Buster Keaton ever made a Japanese monster movie, it probably would be a lot like "Big Man Japan" (or "Dai Nippon Jin"). Matsumoto Hitoshi stars as Dai Saito, a down-at-the-heels, unkempt and lonely everyman cursed with the occupation of defending Japan against attacks by hilariously goofy giant monsters. One might think that this assignment would be glamorous work, but the opposite is true. Dai Saito is detested by his neighbors, who hate the chaos Dai creates when, through jolts of electricity, he springs to mountainous size to do battle against the onslaught of big baddies. To add insult to injury, being Big Man Japan doesn't pay particularly well, the television show that broadcasts his exploits gets terrible ratings, and Dai must bear the indignity of having advertisements placed on his giant body.

Shot in documentary style, the film's deadpan portraits of its depressed superhero star and such minor characters as his exploitative agent, his disdainful ex-wife, and his aging bar hostess girlfriend are wonderfully human while they mine rich veins of dark comic gold. There is almost nothing conventional about "Big Man Japan". Some viewers may find its pacing to be ponderous, but, for those who cherish the off-beat, it doesn't get much off-beater than this very bleak comedy.
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