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Kuso is a 2017 American independent body horror comedy film directed by Steven Ellison (credited as "Steve"), better known as the multi-genre music producer Flying Lotus, in his directorial debut. It is written by Ellison, David Firth and Zack Fox.
|Directed by||Steven Ellison|
|Produced by||Eddie Alcazar|
|Distributed by||Brainfeeder Films|
Kuso depicts a series of four surreal vignettes about the mutated survivors of an earthquake that has destroyed Los Angeles. The vignettes are broken up throughout the film by animations, television static, and news reporters reporting on the earthquake; the news report is initially interrupted by Busdriver, who performs a jazz-spoken word number describing the earthquake.
- Written by Steven Ellison
Missy and Kenneth are lovers who live in an apartment complex. On their first appearance, Missy is seen choking Kenneth as he masturbates, then singing him to sleep. However, Missy covers her neck with a cloth, and refuses to let Kenneth perform sexual acts on her. Kenneth attempts to play the piano for her to sing, but another voice joins them; Missy finally removes the cloth to reveal a talking boil on her neck. After initial revulsion, the boil talks Kenneth into letting it perform fellatio on him; he agrees, and they do so. Afterward, Kenneth responds in pleasure, having learned to enjoy the boil's presence, and names it Royal.
- Written by Steven Ellison and Zack Fox
Up-and-coming rapper B lives in an apartment with interdimensional creatures Kazo and Mazu. After smoking from a bong and watching what appears to be a snuff film with them, B goes to the bathroom to take a pregnancy test, but is forced to hide it when Phil, a man who raped B and got her pregnant, appears through her toilet. Having tested positive, B goes to Dr. Clinton's clinic for an abortion, where she meets Manuel, who is cured of his fear of breasts by Mr. Quiggle, a large bug living in Clinton's anus. B is offered a coat hanger for her abortion, and leaves in disgust. She visits Phil to tell him she is pregnant, but Phil refuses to let her get an abortion; Kazo and Mazu subdue Phil and trap him within one of B's music videos. They then remove the fetus from B's body, and B suggests that they smoke the fetus.
- Written by Steven Ellison
Charlie is a small man who goes to an exclusive school in the forest and is fed terrible food by his mother, which causes him to constantly need to defecate. Laughed out of his classroom for doing so in his pants, Charlie runs into the forest, where he finds a strange creature with only an anus-like orifice with a worm-like tongue. He feeds the creature some of his feces, which causes it to apparently evolve, growing a face in place of its tongue. On their second meeting, the creature transfers a beam of green light to Charlie's head, empowering him to stop going to school and overcome his mother at last. Charlie later feeds the creature dog feces, which causes it and its apparent offspring to vanish, leaving Charlie and the dog standing in the forest.
- Written by Steven Ellison and David Firth
Angel, a woman crawling on the ground and eating concrete, tells herself she needs to sacrifice her baby. The voice of God speaks to her and tells her that her baby is missing and she will find it down a hole that she claims leads to Hell. Angel crawls into the hole, but slips and falls all the way down. She witnesses another man being consumed by a creature in the hole, and is yelled at by Jenny, an inhabitant of the hole world. Angel is swallowed by another creature in the hole; she travels down a long, surreal tunnel, before coming up out of the ground inside a creature similar to the one from Smear, witnessing a large object flying over Los Angeles.
After the credits, Busdriver performs another spoken word piece about surviving the earthquake.
- Iesha Coston as Missy
- Zack Fox as Manuel
- Bethany Schmitt as B (credited as The Buttress)
- Shane Carpenter as Charlie
- Oumi Zumi as Kenneth
- Mali Matsuda as Angel
- Tim Heidecker as Phil
- Hannibal Buress as Kazo
- Donnell Rawlings as Mazu
- Anders Holm as Teacher
- Regan Farquhar as News Pirate
- David Firth as Royal/Voice of God
- George Clinton as Doctor Clinton
The film premiered at Sundance Film Festival on January 21, 2017. The film was reported to have many people leaving during the screening, with Flying Lotus later stating that "only like 20 people out of like 400" walked out.
- "Sundance Film Review: 'Kuso'". Variety. January 27, 2017. Retrieved February 3, 2017.
- "Watch Flying Lotus' Disturbing 'Kuso' Trailer".
- Minsker, Evan (26 January 2017). "Flying Lotus' Film Kuso Triggers Walkout at Sundance". Pitchfork. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
- "Flying Lotus' Sundance Thriller 'Kuso' Lands at Shudder for July Release". Variety. 6 June 2017.