#Manhole ( 2023 )

Thriller från 2023.

Kazuyoshi Kumakiri’s 2023 film #Manhole is a psychological thriller that delves into the dark recesses of the human mind and the stark realities of urban isolation. The story follows Shunsuke Kawamura, portrayed by Yuto Nakajima, a successful office worker whose life takes a sudden and terrifying turn when he falls into a manhole on his way home from a celebration.

Trapped in the confined, subterranean space, Shunsuke finds himself cut off from the outside world. As he struggles to survive and find a way out, his cries for help seem to go unheard. The manhole becomes a symbol of his deeper psychological entrapment, and Shunsuke must confront his own fears, regrets, and the darker aspects of his psyche.

#Manhole is a masterclass in tension and suspense, with Kumakiri’s direction emphasizing the claustrophobic environment and the growing desperation of the protagonist. The film’s narrative structure cleverly weaves between Shunsuke’s attempts to escape and flashbacks that reveal key aspects of his life and personality, gradually building a complex portrait of a man who is both a victim and a captive of his own choices.

Yuto Nakajima delivers a powerful performance, capturing Shunsuke’s escalating panic and inner turmoil with raw intensity. The film’s tight setting and minimalistic approach heighten the psychological stakes, drawing the audience into Shunsuke’s plight and making every moment of uncertainty palpable.

#Manhole also explores broader themes of societal pressure, the isolation of modern urban life, and the thin veneer of success that can mask profound personal struggles. Kumakiri’s film is both a gripping survival story and a poignant character study, resonating with viewers who recognize the metaphorical manholes that many navigate in their own lives.

With its intense atmosphere, compelling lead performance, and thought-provoking themes, #Manhole is a standout entry in contemporary Japanese cinema, showcasing Kazuyoshi Kumakiri’s talent for creating emotionally and psychologically resonant films.



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