Photo/Illutration Anna Yamada (Photo by Yoko Shinotsuka)

"Suicide Forest Village," the latest offering by horror master Takashi Shimizu, is pitched at audiences wanting to view a scary movie to relieve the humdrum of their daily lives.

Now showing at theaters nationwide, "Suicide Forest Village" is the second installment in the village-themed horror movie series. It follows last year's smash hit "Howling Village."

"I think everyone wants something extraordinary, given the difficult times in which people live because of the COVID-19 pandemic," said actress Anna Yamada.

The story is set in the sprawling Aokigahara forest at the base of Mount Fuji. A series of bizarre events occur involving the site that is renowned for attracting would-be suicides.

Yamada plays Hibiki Amasawa, who finds a mysterious box that puts curses on people and is dragged into the other world.

The "Ju-On: The Grudge" director's previous film, "Howling Village," which was set in a real-life haunted spot, was released in February 2020 and raked in 1.4 billion yen ($13.4 million) at the Japanese box office.

Horror movies have enjoyed a boom since last year following the release of "Midsommar" by Ari Aster and "Stigmatized Properties" by "Ring" director Hideo Nakata.

"During the stay-at-home period, I couldn't see movies that would make me think about real-life problems," Yamada said.

"I think everyone wants to experience something that is different from reality, something with which they can escape from reality. So, I also think 'Suicide Forest Village' with many fantasy elements can become something that saves someone's heart," she added.

Born in 2001, Yamada made her acting debut in 2013.

Her latest works include "The Master Plan" and "The Cinderella Addiction," both of which were released in 2021.