In Competition with the "survival" film, Wara No Tate, the Japanese filmmaker gave his press conference in the company of his starring actors, Nanako Matsushima and Takao Osawa.
Takashi Miike on the "giri", a Japanese term that suggests duty and moral and social obligation:
When you describe human beings, you show them in all their facets. This is a story about the police and criminals, but they're people just like anyone else, with a social life, a daily life. That's what I wanted to depict.
Takashi Miike on the difficulties of shooting:
Shooting the film was problematic, because we've lost touch to some extent with the tradition of action films, complete with stuntmen. For the high speed train, Japanese railways didn't want me to film for security reasons, but I was able to do it in Taiwan, where they have the same trains. Taiwan has always been very helpful to me.
On the characters and the differences from the novel:
Nanako Matsushima (whose character is a man in the novel): It's true these are real changes, and they introduce new elements. My character is a policewoman, and takes a critical view of criminals, but it's just her job. Above all she is a mother.
Takao Osawa: In my view the most important themes in the original novel resurface in the film. Each person has their own opinion of justice. We all have good and evil in us, and find the right balance for our lives. All it takes is a small thing and that balance can be lost.
Takashi Miike, on Shohei Imamura, one of his masters:
He taught me that you have to make films with what you hjave. Sometimes people try to be original or different. But when you make films with what you've got, the originality comes through naturally.
Reported by B. de M.