Japanese weekly scandal magazines are pond scum, are they not? Dishing up grainy paparazzi photos of the famous and powerful, accompanied by wink-wink stories about improprieties and crimes — alleged or exposed — they appeal to the lowest common denominator, with their only raison d'etre being sales figures. Wouldn't it be wonderful if they all vanished from the face of the Earth?

But as Hitoshi One shows in "Scoop!," his delightfully scabrous comedy about one such fictional rag, the weeklies can expose truths that their hypocritical subjects — presenting a pure, upright public image that their low-down private words and actions belie — would do anything to hide. These are truths the mainstream media, anxious to avoid offending sources and rocking the institutional boat, too often suppress or ignore.

This is One's third feature, and third set in the media industry, following "Love Strikes!" ("Moteki," 2011) and "Bakuman"(2015). In all the films, he uses scuffling heroes as productive sources of laughs, but never treats them as two-dimensional cartoons. Instead, he reveals their flaws for maximum comic and dramatic effect, sometimes in the same perfectly crafted scene.