One Missed Call (2003 film)
|One Missed Call|
Japanese theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Takashi Miike|
|Produced by||Yoichi Arishige
|Screenplay by||Minako Daira|
|Based on||Chakushin Ari
by Yasushi Akimoto
|Music by||Kôji Endô|
|Editing by||Yasushi Shimamura|
|Distributed by||Toho Company|
|Running time||112 minutes|
One Missed Call (着信アリ Chakushin ari ) is a 2003 Japanese horror film directed by Takashi Miike and written by Minako Daira. The film is based on the novel Chakushin Ari by Yasushi Akimoto. The plot revolves around Yumi Nakamura, a young psychology student whose friend Yoko gets an unusual voice message on her cell phone. The message is dated two days in the future and Yoko can hear herself screaming in it. After Yoko mysteriously dies, her death sets off a chain of events which leads Yumi to discover that this phenomenon has been occurring throughout Japan long before Yoko received an anonymous call from her future self. When Yumi gets that very same call with the date and time of her future death, will she be able to both save herself and figure out who's the mastermind behind the calls before it's too late?
In Tokyo, during an evening get-together with friends, Yoko Okazaki (Anna Nagata) has just arrived from a memorial service for her former high school friend Rina. Yoko heads to the restaurant bathroom to change into more comfotable attire and her friend Yumi Nakamura (Kou Shibasaki) comes along to freshen up. While in the bathroom Yumi asks Yoko how Rina died. Yoko tells Yumi that Rina was diving, got separated from her group, and drowned. Suddenly Yoko's cell phone suddenly rings in an eerie, unusual tone, cartoon styled. Since the ring tone isn't Yoko's she doesn't think anything of it until Yumi tells her that It's Yoko's phone ringing. Confused Yoko comes out of the bathroom stall to answer but doesn't pick up soon enough and the call goes into "voice mail" (chakushin). Upon opening her voice mail messages, she sees that the call/message was from her own phone number and dated two days into the future. As Yoko retrieves the message, she and Yumi listen intently to it. What they hear is a train crossing signal and the voice of Yoko saying "Oh no, it started raining", followed by a horrendous scream and then dead silence, which visibly disturbs the two girls.
Back at the dinner table Yoko attempts to laugh off the message with her and Yumi's friends, who are just as clueless as them. Although She tells her friends that she received the call to her cell phone on Apr 16 at 9:44 p.m. Her cell phone indicated that the message was from Apr 18 at 11:04 p.m. Although Yoko eventually dismisses the call as nothing but a prank on her by her boyfriend, Yumi is still clearly unsettled by it. On April 18, Yumi, Yoko and their friend Natsumi Konishi (Kazue Fukiishi) are attending a night class for psychology at their university. While their professor is discussing a case on child abuse, Yumi seems intrigued by the lesson, but Yoko isn't paying attention and is texting her boyfriend Shunsuke saying that she wants to break up. When Natsumi asks Yoko why, Yoko says she prefers Kenji Kawai (Atsushi Ida), a student attending the same university as the three girls. Shortly afterwards Yoko gets in trouble for texting in class but is nonetheless blissful about her breakup with Shunsuke. Yoko then leaves Natsumi and Yumi after class for work.
Later that evening on April 18, Yumi is at home when receives a call from Yoko on her cellphone. Yoko who's still ecstatic about her breakup asks Yumi to come shopping with her for bikinis the next day as Yoko wants to look nice for Kenji. During that call, Yumi hears a train crossing signal that sounds like the one that was part of Yoko's voice mail. Curious, she asks Yoko where she is. Yoko is walking on a pedestrian overpass over train tracks and the call starts to break up. Yoko asks Yumi if she can hear her. Yumi asks Yoko if she remembers the call she got when the two of them were in the restaurant bathroom and remembers that 11:04 p.m. on April 18 was the receiving date. Yoko still can't hear Yumi well and suddenly it starts lightly raining and Yoko says, "Oh no, it started raining". As a terrified Yumi remembers that was the exact same message on Yoko's voice mail, she suddenly she hears Yoko scream into the phone. Yumi screams for Yoko, but as Yumi's clock strikes 11:04 p.m. Yoko is then violently thrown by an unseen force through a chain link fence and onto a speeding commuter train down below just passing by, decapitating her. Then, as Yoko's severed arm still holds the phone, her thumb suddenly begins to dial a randomly picked phone number, and she also vomits a strange red candy.
Yumi's friend, and Yoko's crush, Kenji's phone is next to receive a call and, like Yoko, he misses it. He and Yumi are on a balcony at their university when he tells Yumi that he received a voice message with himself cursing and then a loud scream, he lets Yumi listen to the message and a horrified Yumi realizes the receiving time is in two minutes. Kenji gets angry and believes it is Yumi and his friends trying to scare him. He walks towards the elevator while Yumi runs after him. Kenji sees a friend that he had to meet with and he suddenly speakes the same words of the message. Frightened, he looks at Yumi while the doors of the elevator suddenly open without the cabin. An invisible entity grabs his ankles and suddenly pulls him down the shaft while he screams. He falls to his death at the bottom of the elevator and he vomits a red candy. His phone suddenly presses buttons on its own dialing a new number and looking for another victim to kill.
Natsumi is staying over at Yumi's apartment. Yumi has switched off both hers and Natsumi's phones hoping this will prevent either of them getting a "death call". However during the night, Yumi is unable to sleep and goes to her kitchen to get a midnight snack. While looking through her fridge for something to eat, she suddenly hears one of the cellphones ringing the eerie tone and frantically wakes Natsumi up. After finding out Yumi has no new messages on her phone, Natsumi realizes that it's her who has received the call. This time, unlike Yoko and Kenji, instead of a voice mail message quoting her final words, Natsumi receives a strange video of her in a dark room with a mysterious woman with long black hair appearing behind her from a wall in the background, which upsets both her and Yumi. The next day Yumi takes Natsumi to a phone store where Natsumi cancels her phone contract and her number, hoping that discontinuing her cellphone line will prevent her from possibly getting killed.
When she and Yumi return back to Natsumi's apartment, Natsumi is instantly bombarded with reporters and journalists who claim they're investigating the calls. One of the reporters tries to get Natsumi to re-enact the moment she found out she received the call by giving her a camera woman's cell phone to use as a prop. Yumi fed up, tells the reporter and his crew to leave Natsumi alone when suddenly the cell phone rings the tone of death and the exact same video that was sent to Natsumi's old phone appears on the phone, revealing that the curse is still active, and that Natsumi is still destined to die. Upset and scared Natsumi screams and throws the phone. The reporter who gave her the phone picks it up, looks at the video and tells Natsumi that he and his crew can help her and that they know a man who's famous for his exorcisms and that he can help Natsumi. Yumi, knowing that the reporter isn't being genuine and that he'll only exploit and embarrass Natsumi, tries to stop him and the other reporters from taking Natsumi to the television broadcast station where the exorcism will be held. Natsumi, now desperate to make this madness stop once and for all, agress to go and tells Yumi that she's going and that that she doesn't want to end up like Kenji and Yoko. She then leaves with the crew, much to Yumi's dismay.
Shortly afterwards Yumi meets Hiroshi Yamashita (Shinichi Tsutsumi), a detective who has been investigating the mysterious cell phone phenomenon since the death of his sister, Ritsuko, a nurse at a local hospital who, like Yumi's friends, received an anonymous phone call, missed it, and three days later, was saved from a fire in her house but suffered third-degree burns and subsequently died. Before her body was taken to the morgue, Yamashita discovered a red candy in Ritsuko's mouth, just like the ones found in Yoko and Kenji's mouths. Together the two go to the Television station where the Natsumi's exorcism is being broadcast. The exorcism turns into a complete disaster and the video of Natsumi real. Yumi and Yamashita make it in time to save Natsumi, but as they're helping Natsumi get on her feet, her right hand turns to the back and her complete arm turns to the back of her neck and keeps turning until her head falls off, with a voice saying "Don't worry, I'll take you to the hospital". Her decapitated body still walks and eventually falls down on the floor. A red candy comes out of her mouth that stops at Yumi's feet and just when a horrified Yumi thinks things couldn't get any worse, the creepy ring tone sounds on Yumi's phone.
Yumi and Yamashita further investigate about the phone calls, in which they find out about a woman named Marie Mizunuma who had two daughters, Mimiko and Nanako, both of whom were sent to the care center where Ritsuko worked at after Marie was supposedly abusing them for the sake of attention. Mimiko died a year ago after a lethal asthma attack, while Marie vanished shortly after a hospital fire. Yamashita visits Nanako, now mute and lives in an orphanage where he found out about the ringtone's origin. Yumi visits the old hospital where Marie was last seen, followed by Yamashita. They eventually find a dead body of what appears to be Marie, clutching a phone that comes to life. She approaches Yumi while Yamashita is blasted by a force out of the room, meeting with her sister's spirit who wishes him good luck. Yumi recalls her experience of abuse by her mother and apologizes to Marie, crying and saying she will never leave her mother again, with Marie believing Yumi is her daughter.
The police arrives and insists that Yamashita comes to the orphanage where Nanako is to watch a tape which is actually a nanny cam Marie placed in her living room. There, it is revealed that Mimiko is the one who had abused Nanako all along and Marie never knew about it until she came home when Mimiko cut Nanako's hand. Marie took Nanako to the hospital while Mimiko succumbed to her illness, eventually died after asthma attack. Nanako appears and talks for the first time in months, saying that although her sister abused her, she still loves her regardless.
Realizing that the source of the curse is Mimiko, Yamashita races to Yumi's apartment while she is haunted by Mimiko's ghost. Yamashita arrives to find nothing wrong and relieved, he hugs Yumi. However Yumi stabs him, and as he drops to the ground, the reflection of Yumi in mirror reveals that she is possessed by Mimiko. Before Yamashita faints, he hears Yumi saying that she will take him to the hospital, much like what Mimiko said after she cut Nanako's hand. Yamashita dreams of being with a dying Mimiko and he has her use the inhaler to survive. Later, Yamashita wakes up in the hospital with Yumi in the room with a knife hiding behind her back. She leans forward and gives him the same kind of red candy that appeared with all of the victims, then waits. When Yamashita seems to enjoy and fully chew the candy, Yumi smiles, showing the spirit of Mimiko has obviously found Yamashita as her new replacement of Nanako. The knife foreshadows Yamashita will keep being treated after tortured by the possessed Yumi like what Mimiko did to Nanako. The deaths of Yamashita and Yumi are later mentioned in One Missed Call 2. The film ends with the song Ikutsuka no Sora by Kou Shibasaki.
|This section requires expansion. (June 2013)|
|Character||Actor (Original)||English Dubbing|
|Yumi Nakamura||Kou Shibasaki||Kate Davis|
|Hiroshi Yamashita||Shinichi Tsutsumi||Liam O'Brien|
|Natsumi Konishi||Kazue Fukiishi||Stephanie Sheh|
|Nanako Mizunuma||Shimizu Seinami||Mia Bradly|
|Masakazu Hirayama||????||Doug Stone|
|Yoko Okazaki||Anna Nagata||????|
|Kenji Kawai||Atsushi Ida||Sam Regal|
|Rina Tsuchiya||Kana Ito||????|
|Marie Mizunuma||Mariko Tsutsui||????|
|Ritsuko Yamashita||Takehana Azusa||Cristina Valenzuela|
|Mimiko Mizunuma||Karen Oshima|
|Ichiro Fujieda||Yutaka Matsuchige||Kim Strauss|
|Oka||Goro Kishitani||Joe Cappelletti|
|Additional voices||-||Stephanie Sheh
Steve Staley (Phone Salesman)
Karen Thompson (Voicemail)
English dubbing staff
Entertainment Weekly wrote, "One Missed Call is so unoriginal that the movie could almost be a parody of J-horror tropes", yet "Miike, for a while at least, stages it with a dread-soaked visual flair that allows you to enjoy being manipulated." LA Weekly called it "a prolonged, maddening, predictable—yet curiously pleasurable—descent into incomprehensibility." The Philadelphia Inquirer stated that "Miike, whose work usually veers into more surreal, experimental terrain, uses creepy-crawly juxtaposition, grisly violence, and dark humor to create a nightmare scenario for the text-message generation."
A sequel, One Missed Call 2 was released in 2005. One Missed Call, a ten-episode Japanese television drama was released the same year. One Missed Call: Final, the third installment and the end to the Chakushin ari mythos was released in 2006.
- "One Missed Call - Box Office Report". tohokingdom.com. Retrieved 10 August 2012.
- "Chakushin ari (One Missed Call)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 10 August 2012.
- "Chakushin Ari (One Missed Call) - Rotten Tomatoes". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 10 August 2012.
- Gleiberman, Owen (20 April 2005). "[Entertainment Weekly review]". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 10 August 2012.
- Steven Rea. http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/10005163-one_missed_call/reviews/#page=2
- One Missed Call at the Internet Movie Database
- (Japanese) One Missed Call at the Japanese Movie Database