"Tokyo!," the dynamic new film by three of world cinema's great visionaries: Michel Gondry ("Be Kind Rewind," "The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind"), Leos Carax ("The Lovers on the Bridge"), and Bong Joon-ho ("The Host"). A uniquely entertaining modern-day triptych, "Tokyo!" explores Japan's multifaceted capital city through three indelible stories: a Kafkaesque fable about a young woman's bizarre physical transformation; an arch-punk mini-monster-movie in which a man rises from the sewers to wreak havoc on the city; and a beguiling tale about a hermit who ventures outside in search of love.
Michel Gondry's playfully poignant "Interior Design" follows the arrival in Tokyo of young filmmaker Akira and his supportive but listless girlfriend Hiroko. Overstaying their welcome at a friend's tiny apartment, they search in vain for a place of their own. With Akira landing a job and his off-beat film career beginning to take off, it's Hiroko who struggles to find a purpose. So when she awakens one morning to find herself suddenly and strangely transformed, she's less horrified than intrigued by the possibilities.
Leos Carax's first new film since 1999's "Pola X," "Merde" is a kinetic, sharp-edged return. Carax favorite Denis Lavant ("The Lovers on the Bridge") plays a wild-eyed monster-man who rises from the sewers and brings hysterical anarchy to the streets of Tokyo. Eventually arrested, he's put on trial and defended by a mysterious French lawyer who somehow speaks the same strange language.
Bong Joon-ho's "Shaking Tokyo" tells of a man who self-describes as a hikikomori – one who refuses to leave his apartment. Amidst towers of books and empty take-out containers, his hermetic world is disrupted when, during the shudders of an earthquake, an attractive pizza deliverywoman collapses in his doorway.