When I was an elementary school student, I often visited Okayama prefecture where My grandparents lived in. They have different customs and accents from Tokyo, and it deeply attracted me. Every summed season, I enjoyed the great scenery of Okayama.
However, in one summer vacation, I watched this film on TV before going to grandparents’ house in Okayama, and I was so terrified. This film is set in the countryside of Okayama prefecture.
Village of the 8 Gravestones(or, ‘Yatsu-haka-mura’) is a detective story. A intelligent detective faces against mysterious serial killer. But I think it’s more like Japanese horror which describes the dark side of rural area in Japan.
Today, a lot of tourists visit the county side in japan. They would enjoy its beautiful scene and hospitality of the people. However, if they start living in such area, they would realize how deeply the residents are bind in the rule from conventional thoughts, and, superstitions.
It’s one of the serious social problems in today’s japan: the difficulty of getting along with urban people(Tokyo, Osaka, Kobe….) and rural people.
This film succeeds in describing the unconscious fear which urban Japanese people have toward rural Japanese people. The protagonist of this film is young man who lives in Tokyo (according to the first scene of this film, no doubt he’s working in Japan Air Lines!). He is summoned to the head family of his family tree. He goes to the hometown in Okayama prefecture. He is involved in the serial murders. As the investigation proceeding, he realizes the terrifying history of his ancestors…
If you have a chance to visit Okayama prefecture, before leaving home, you have to watch this film. It’ll be effective to interrupt your sleep during the travel around Okayama(lol).