Some directors put their own neuroses on the screen, with attitudes ranging from the dramatically self-lacerating (Ingmar Bergman) to the comically self-deprecating (Woody Allen). Where actor-turned-director Jiro Sato departs from the messed-up norm in “Memo,” his first feature film, is in the rawness and intensity of his on-screen dysfunction.
Playing Junpei, the severely disturbed, obsessive-compulsive brother of the heroine’s father, Sato sprays words in stuttered, blurted, barely comprehensible fragments, as his emotions surge and shift in microbursts, like a mad March wind. He washes his hands again and again and again, pausing only to say, with gritted teeth and a sparkly eyed grin, that this time will be the last. But it isn’t.