Audition (Ōdishon) is a full-length Japanese movie that was released in 1999. It was directed by Takashi Miike, a controversial Japanese director that is known for his over-the-top movies. He has been accused of being a misogynist, although most of his movies end up having a woman pulling the strings in the end. The movie Audition was based on a book by Ryu Murakami, a well-known Japanese author and film maker.
Life for Shigeharu Aoyama has been difficult. Seven years ago he lost his wife to sickness, and now his teenaged son, Shigehiko, wants him to start dating again. Aoyama is unsure about dating, but his son desperately wants him to find someone so that he will not be alone when Shigehiko leaves his home. Aoyama’s friend, Yoshikawa, decides to hold auditions for beautiful women, letting them believe that they are auditioning for a part in a film when they are really on audition to become a date for Aoyama.
Aoyama falls for Asami Yamazaki. She is quiet and very sweet in her audition, and regales her tale of being a ballerina who had to give up her toe-shoes due to an injury. Aoyama can understand Asami’s feelings of despair and depression, as he is still hurting over his wife’s death. Yoshikawa, the one who started the whole thing in the first place, does not trust Asami and believes that something is not quite right. He warns Aoyama that none of the references she had on her resume were reachable, but Aoyama does not care.
We then see Asami sitting in the middle of her apartment, with a burlap sack sitting on one side of her and a telephone on the other. When the phone rings, the sack suddenly jumps across the room, seemingly by itself. Asami answers the phone to find Aoyama on the other end. He asks her to go to a hotel with him and she agrees. The two meet at the beautiful hotel and Asami confesses that she was physically abused as a child. Asami and Aoyama then make love, after which Asami asks Aoyama to promise to love only her. He does.
When Aoyama wakes up the next morning, Asami is nowhere to be found. Aoyama starts looking around for her, using the information she gave on her resume, but is unable to find her. The ballet studio where she claimed to have taken dance lessons had been closed for years. Inside, however, is an old man in a wheelchair. He has artificial feet and explains to Aoyama that he was the one who abused Asami.
On the resume it said that Asami worked at a bar. Neighbors of the bar tell Aoyama that the bar has been closed for a year because the woman in charge was murdered gruesomely. Asami, unknown to her lover, goes to Aoyama’s home and finds pictures of his dead wife. She assaults him when he returns home, torturing him and eventually cutting off his foot. She screams that he is just like everybody else she has ever known: unable to love only her. Aoyama’s son returns home in time to push Asami down a flight of stairs, killing her instantly.