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Angel Dust
(Enjeru Dasuto)
Japan - 1994
Directed by Sogo Ishii


Every Monday at 6:00 p.m., a young woman, somewhere in the Tokyo subway system, becomes the victim of a serial killer.   Kaho Minami stars as Setsuko Suma, a psychiatrist with psychic gifts who is asked by police to help solve the crimes.  She uses a psychic technique that enables her to visualize the last image seen by the eyes of the victims. Setsuko is confused by the  psychic images she receives, as they do not point to one killer, yet all have been killed by lethal injections, and in all other ways, the murders are identical.

This seems a strangely clairvoyant story, considering the actual killings by lethal injection in the Tokyo subways that happened a few years later.  The modus operandi of this killer is also by lethal injection. 

The performance by Kaho Minami is compelling, she is cool and calculated, but we find her intensely compassionate.  The director, Sogo Ishii, creates a very tense mood that is palpable.  His sense of composition suggests an artistic quality that uplifts the film and makes it worthy. A stronger plot, with a more cleverly crafted outcome would have saved this film from the relative obscurity it has been assigned to.  Angel Dust was nominated for a Bronze Horse at the Stockhom Film Festival (1995).

Runtime:  116 Minutes

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