MIMICRY FREAKS (2019) Reviews and overview of bizarre Japanese horror


‘Scare me to see the hell’

Mimicry Freaks is a 2019 Japanese surreal horror film in which various characters meet their fate in a forest and two storylines intertwine.

Written and directed by Shugo Fujii (Red Line Crossing; A Living Hell), inspired by the famous Japanese drawing Kaidan Chibusa Enokizu by Seiu, the movie stars Tatsuji Sugiyama, Tomoya Mochizuki and Daiki Tanaka.


One morning, a man named Fuma wakes up in bed deep within a forest. Suddenly, a traditional Japanese warrior monster known as a Namahage attacks.

Meanwhile, a wedding planner is taking two lovers and the bride’s father to a wedding ceremony hall in the forest for the rehearsal. However, the car breaks down in the middle of nowhere and the fact that the bride’s father is unhappy to soon have an anti-nuclear activist as a son-in-law quickly turns out to be the smallest problem for everyone involved.

When the two stories intertwine, the outcome becomes unpredictable…


“The saturated colors intensify the nightmare-like atmosphere of the story, while the presentation of the forest and the various, abandoned settlements is as horrifying as it should be. The editing also intensifies the nightmarish/delirious essence, particularly through the abruptness of the cuts. The “obvious” horror tactics (jump scares, gore etc) are all here, but in general, and through the combination of production values and narrative, the film creates horror more through its general atmosphere…” Asian Movie Pulse

Mimicry Freaks really is a film only for viewers with strong stomachs and a taste for the outlandish. However, beneath its gruesome carnage, there’s a genuinely impressive and inventive piece of genre cinema, that’s somehow familiar while breaking all the rules, and which again shows Shugo Fujii to be one of the most interesting and risk-taking genre directors working in Japan today.” Eastern Kicks

“Fujii (writer, director and editor) has understood that horror is empowered by visual as well as narrative disorientation. It is because the spectator is denied to get a full grasp on the narrative, that the splatter and the visual horror is able to unsettle the spectator.” Psychocinematography

Original title:

Chô-gitai ningen