The Magic Hour


Action / Comedy

Plot summary

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720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
1.23 GB
Japanese 2.0
23.976 fps
2 hr 16 min
P/S 1 / 1
2.52 GB
Japanese 5.1
23.976 fps
2 hr 16 min
P/S 0 / 8

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by tenshi_ippikiookami7 / 10

A lighthearted movie that stays for too long

"The Magic Hour" is a movie with a very simple and charming plot: a guy gets in trouble with his gang boss when he gets into a relationship with his boss's girlfriend. To save his and the woman's life, Bingo decides to lie to his boss and say that he knows the famous killer Togashi. The boss decides to postpone his death and gives him five days to come back with the assassin. But Bingo doesn't know where to find Togashi, and comes up with a plan: hire an actor to play the part, but without telling him the truth; instead he tells the actor that all is part of a movie. Comedy ensues.

"The Magic Hour" is a very funny and not very complicated movie, that has an easy to follow plot, with lots of unexpected moments, and that loves to put its characters in ridiculous situations. As a comedy of misunderstandings and lies it does its job perfectly. It helps to have an amazing cast, with lots of familiar faces from modern Japanese cinema, that any fan will have a blast recognizing. Satô, as the poor third-rate actor who believes that he has the chance of his life to become famous, and Tsumabuki, as the guy that is just trying to keep alive, do a great job and have a nice chemistry together. The movie keeps a nice pace, the direction is good, and the action, always with a touch of comedy, is breezy. Sadly, the movie goes for almost 2 hours and 15 minutes, so the story starts to run thin and it becomes a little bit too long. But this is a minor quibble in a very funny movie.

Reviewed by El_Farmerino_Esq7 / 10

Extraordinarily pleasant.

It's pretty easy to see why The Magic Hour went down so well with audiences in its native Japan. Ridiculously light-hearted, enough to put even Jeunet's Amelie to shame, with a sort-of all star cast that includes Haru no Yuki/Dororo star Satoshi Tsumabuki, delightful young up-and-comer Haruka Ayase (sadly given little to do here) former Monkey star Toshiyuki Nishida and perennial Kitano stooge Susumu Terajima amidst a host of other recognisable faces. It even has a cameo from Kon Ichikawa, sadly shortly before his death. The show really belongs, though, to Koichi Sato, verily hamming it up as, well, a very hammy actor...

This kind of self-reference permeates the film, occasionally to its detriment. Ayase's short monologue early on, for example, enouncing her feelings of being in a movie, is particularly grating. It's not the film's only problem; it suffers from a particularly weak female lead (in fact, all of the female roles are criminally underwritten),a total lack of logic or flow and a fairly bloated running time that the material doesn't really justify. Luckily, these concerns matter little in a film clearly intended solely to entertain - a feat which it accomplishes in abundance. Particular highlights include Sato's bizarre knife-licking antics during the first meeting between Murata/Togashi and Boss Teshio, the dialogue between Sato and Terajima about "where you're shooting from" and the sight gag early on involving cement shoes and painted toenails. As with any out-and-out comedy, the jokes are hit-and-miss, but it easily scores enough hits to warrant a viewing.

As throwaway as they come and not without its flaws, but ultimately satisfying nonetheless.

Reviewed by speedpop-19 / 10

The magic hour of sunset before the night

Koki Mitani is a director that film critics tend to treasure. Although he hardly deviates away from his warm-hearted and good natured settings, his style is often chaotic but can somehow make all the sense of the world.

The Magic Hour keeps up with this tradition, bringing in many veterans of actors that he has used previously (even if small minor roles),and it really shows how talented Mitani can be not only as a director but as a writer. Blessed from being bred from theatre, his plots move sufficiently at an excellent pace to the point where sometimes you want to freeze time just to appreciate how well tied together a movie can become.

Subtle humour that creates bellyaches from laughter is his greatest weapon and he uses it profoundly in this movie. I felt that all of the actors put their best performances into it, and it seemed like they genuinely had a lot of fun by "camping" it up at times.

If anyone wants to watch a Japanese comedy that isn't over the top then look no further.

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