Cinepub


31 Days of Horror 3: Carved (2007) by Jamie

Ah, Japan. Home to big titted zombies, executive koalas and battlefield baseball. Yes, the land of the rising sun is often a source of fascination for those in the West because sometimes their cultural output can seem a little… odd to our sensibilities. Awesome but still odd.

So hey, I thought, let’s go for a good ol’ fashioned Japanese horror film for this edition of 31 Days of Horror. Something different to excite the blood a touch. And was I disappointed? Well, yes and no. Carved (aka Kuchisake-onna or Slit-Mouthed Woman) is based on a modern Japanese urban legend about a woman with her mouth slit open from ear to ear, ala the Joker from ‘The Dark Knight’. I won’t recount the entire legend here so I shall point you to the wikipedia entry here. Needless to say, it is exactly the kind of thing that kids come up with, no different really than something like Bloody Mary or the like.

And the legend actually makes a fairly decent, if somewhat subdued, movie. It’s obviously something of a low budget film as the few times that you do see make-up effects, they are clearly a bit budget but they are used sparingly enough that it doesn’t really matter that much. Despite it’s low budget, the movie manages to serve up a few creepy and shocking moments, particularly moments involving children that I don’t think you’d ever see in an American horror movie.

Despite the fact that the film was enjoyable as a whole, I did feel as though it did start to drag towards the end and I found my mind wandering a little. There is also some kind of message about child abuse (the hitting kind not the catholic priest kind) that is a little lost on me. So if you hit kids you become a slit-mouthed crazy lady? But people who didn’t abuse their kids were also possessed by her and… No, I’m just not sure I’m getting it. As for the acting, well, I can’t really comment. When someone’s talking in a different language, they could be Japanese Tommy Wiseau and I’d be hard pressed to tell.

So overall not a terrible film but nothing spectacular either. I guess it’d fall somewhere in the middle of the spectrum so 2.5 pints out of 5. Laterz.

 

Eeek!



Halloweak: Horny House of Horror by Jamie

Yes, it’s the most wonderful time of the year again, Halloween, and that can mean only one thing: Watching a huge amount of shitty horror movies in order to get you in the right mood. Sure, you could watch a bunch of good horror movies, and I’ll certainly be doing that after I’ve finished this week of bad ones in order to cleanse my palate, but the fact of the matter is that the majority of horror films aren’t worth the film they’re printed on.

It’s a genre plagued with crap largely because many people who make horror films think you don’t need to rely to heavily on plot. A couple of gruesome effects shots, a few gallons of blood and zang, you have a horror film. Another thing that contributes to the glut of truly awful horror films is the fact that, compared to some other genres, they can be done relatively cheaply. So with all that out of the way, let’s get on to the first entry of this cavalcade of crap, the Japanese offering ‘Horny House of Horror’.

Now, I don’t know if you’ve ever noticed this before but the Japanese can sometimes seem a little weird to our Western sensibilities, what with their ultra-violent cartoon porn and their robots and what have you. But fair enough, each to their own and all that. I’m sure they find the prospect of NASCAR or uncensored hardcore pornography equally as weird. And sure, the Japanese never didn’t come up with some of the crazy shit that we have like the ‘Saw’ films, the ‘Hostel’ films or indeed ‘A Serbian Film’ (more on that later in the week) but they certainly have a certain talent for taking the term torture porn and really running with it. Just look at ‘Audition’ for example. And it’s kinda in this vein that ‘Horny House of Horror’ falls though with a bit more of an (attempted) comic twist.

The story begins inside Shogun Massage Parlour where a customer is receiving a happy ending of the oral variety from an employee, Nagisa (Saori Hara) and he excitedly tells her to suck as hard as she wants. She smiles, descends on his penis and proceeds to bite it of, much to the man’s chagrin. It tunes out that this is a most decidedly unhappy ending. Cue unrealistic amounts of blood and cut to credits. So yeah, this pretty much tells you what you should be coming to expect from this film.

After the credits we are introduced to three friends returning home after a baseball match, Nakazu (Yuya Ishikawa) a man about to get married, Toshida (Wani Kansai) and Uno (Toushi Yanagi). Besides Nakazu (and I might be being a bit generous), none of these characters really have much in the way of characterization. The two friends actually kinda seem to have the exact same personality which can be best be described thusly: They are both douche bags. Still, the three friends come across the Massage Parlour and Toshida and Uno decide they should get Nakazu a girl as one last gift before he is married. This makes Nakazu incredibly nervous as he’s never paid for sex before. In fact it’s hinted that, even though he’s a man of forty, he might still be a virgin. Also, he’s incredibly faithful to his wife to be even though she forced him to quit the baseball team and seems to ring him constantly to check up on him. Still his douche bag friends force him to go in there anyway. Because they are douche bags.

Upon entering the men are confronted with three holes through which the three female employees stick their arses so the men can judge just which one they’d like to be getting a “massage” from. This leads to fondling, pinching and farting causing much hilarity. No, wait. Not hilarity. What’s that thing that’s not hilarity? Oh yeah, boredom. Seriously, just get to the genital mutilation already… Hmm, never thought I’d find myself typing those words.

Finally after a short period of waiting during which Toshida and Uno continue to mock Nakazu, the action finally gets underway. It’s Toshida’s turn first and he get’s his revenge for the girl, Nonoko (Asami) farting in his face earlier by cumming in her mouth. She takes great offence to this and proceeds to cut his penis of with a metallic pair of jaws she has stashed away in her vagina. This results in an amount of blood that can only be described as biologically unfeasible, especially since Toshida survives this assault.

Next, it’s Uno’s member that’s on the chopping block, quite literally this time as he has been chained to a wall and has to resist getting a boner whilst Kaori (Mint Suzuki) does a sexy dance for him. If he manages to stay flaccid, he gets to keep his member and go free but if he fails and becomes aroused, his cock will be sliced off by a samurai sword. Of course, he fails leading to yet more crazy amounts of bloodshed.

Meanwhile Nakazu is managing to resist the charms of Nagisa and finally realises the danger that he’s in when he hears the screams of Uno as he is de-membered and he narrowly avoids Nagisa’s hand job with special acidic lotion. He attempts to rescue his friends but they both die along the way, as long as the two hookers who had so grievously wronged them. So in the end it’s down to Nakazu and Nagisa, both trying to escape as it turns out that the poor girl only worked there to raise money for her brothers. Unfortunately Nakazu is shot by a gun that emerges from the wall and Nagisa is left to confront the Big Boss who has been watching this whole time. He claims to have some grand scheme for removing all of the brothel’s client’s genitals and, as it turns out, keeping them in jars of formaldehyde but Nakazu accuses him of doing just because he has a small penis and is just jealous of every other man on the planet which I guess kinda makes sense but seems to be a bit of a harsh way to go about resolving the issue.

So what to make of a film about a whorehouse where customers are lured in with the promise of cheap sex on to get their members dismembered? Well, I kinda wished they’d made up their mind about whether they were making a horror or a comedy. Yes, horror and comedy can mix really well together but there needs to be a delicate balance. I suppose that if I had to call it, this tried to be far more of a comedy but it just wasn’t funny enough for that. As for the horror side, well, because of the continued attempts at humour it really wasn’t particularly scary either. It really needed to be a bit more over the top, violence wise, which is kinda odd for me to say because I’m generally not one for what has been dubbed ‘torture porn’ but when the film’s about something like genital mutilation then tortuous and hard to watch is exactly what those scenes should be. In the end it’s kind of like this old advert from America. Just imagine that instead of chocolate the guy is saying ‘genital mutilation horror’ and the girl is saying ‘cheesy sex comedy’ instead of peanut butter. Also imagine they are both incredibly disappointed by the outcome of the combination of both of these things:

 

On the plus side I suppose, the girls are hot and the acting is fairly competent throughout. The effects are, again, kinda underwhelming mainly because of the ridiculous amount of blood that ends up spurting everywhere. I know that this is kind of a hallmark of Japanese horror films, particularly those of these type but it just serves to pull me out of what is already a pretty ridiculous affair even more. All in all, the whole thing was just really, really unsatisfying and overall quite boring which is disappointing in something that probably should have been just a cheesy, fun film. Still, I’m sure this film will have it’s fans and bless their little cotton socks for getting something out of it that I just couldn’t find myself. One pint out of five.



Zombie Month: Big Tits Zombie 3D by Jamie

Well, it’s the day before Christmas eve though this will be posted on the day itself and I’m a little inebriated with… shall we say Christmas cheer? Ok, it’s booze but I have to be because I just watched ‘Big Tits Zombie 3D’ because nothing says Christmas like a Japanese film about Zombies and strippers. Seriously, name one thing that’s close to being as Christmassy as that? Yeah, I didn’t think so.

Anyway, due to my current condition and the fact that writing is becoming increasingly more difficult, I’ll make this quick. The basic story is that five strippers working in a Podunk little town in Japan discover a secret room linked to their dressing room which houses the Book of the Dead. One of them uses it to raise the living dead and before you know it, Zombie Apocalypse.

Of course being as this is Japanese, it can’t just be your normal, everyday Zombie Apocalypse. Nope, it’s the kind that includes Zombie Samurai, a tentacle beats and most disturbing of all (and trust me, you know it’s bad when there’s something more disturbing in a Japanese film then a tentacle beast) a zombie women with a hell vagina that shoots flames. Yeah. That’s something I’ve seen now. Thanks Big Tits Zombie…

Oh god, I need to drink more. Bear with me…. Right, where was I? Yeah, this film is pretty fucked up. The special effects are terrible though. CGI blood everywhere and the most hilarious effect ever done for someone being run over that I’ve ever seen (imagine a still photo of a person being flipped on it’s back as the car goes forward). Hell, you can even see the strings on the tentacle beast puppet. Still, there’s the odd bit of nudity… Weird nudity, like a scene where you just get a close up of tits with blood spraying all over them. So yeah, it’s kinda like bukkake with blood instead of cum. Again, thank you movie.

The thing is, this film would actually probably be bad enough to be worth a look if it wasn’t for the 3D. Unfortunately it’s the old style red/blue 3D and you have to take the glasses off and then put them back on for certain scenes. Your eyes just can’t adjust quickly enough to so many changes during such a short film and so it fails. I’ll give Big Tits Zombies 3D two pints out of five. Laterz.



Zombie Month: Battlefield Baseball by Jamie

Spoilers ahead. Also, I’m writing this at half four in the morning so don’t expect a masterpiece.

Oh Japan. Japan, Japan, Japan. You’ve previously driven me to the brink of madness with a little film called ‘Executive Koala’ and now it seems as though you seek to do it again. This time the film is called ‘Battlefield Baseball’ and it easily rivals that koala film in terms of batshit crazy if not surpassing it completely it’s also another film that leads me to wonder just who at Wikipedia is determining what is and isn’t a Zombie film. Anyway, on with the ‘plot’.

Kocho, the Seido High School principal and baseball coach is excited because his team finally has a chance of going all the way to Koshien Stadium in the big tournament thanks to their star player, the Gorilla. This excitement quickly becomes despair however when it is revealed that their first match is against Gedo High, a team that slaughters their opponents because it’s legal to do during a baseball match for some reason.

Then a new student appears, Jubeh, saving the teams worst player Four-Eyes from the leader of a gang of bullies Bancho who hates baseball. It turns out that Jubeh is a great baseball player but he refuses to play for some reason. His beating up of Bancho also results in the bully leader having a change of heart about baseball as well as a change of face (for some reason the change of heart makes him change actors because… I dunno. It just does) because Jubeh’s beating healed an old shoulder wound. He joins the team.

Then there’s a song about why Jubeh won’t play baseball. It’s because he once threw a pitch so hard that it killed his father. Still Four-Eyes begs Jubeh to play, explaining that his mother hates baseball and would punish him severely if she were to find out he was playing. Jubeh is touched by Four-Eyes pure love for the game and agrees to join the team.

On the day of the game, however, Jubeh is arrested for some reason. And so the Seido team go and play valiantly without him only to end up completely slaughtered. Jubeh finally gets out of jail and arrives in time to hear the Principal and Bancho lament the loss. He then finds a body he believes to be Four-Eyes before realising that he’s actually still alive over in the dugout. The body is actually a bomb which explodes, killing him.

Jubeh awakes in the afterlife and comes across his father who tells him to embrace his killer pitch, dubbed the tornado pitch. He then rises from the grave to discover that Bancho to is back, this time changing bodies entirely as he is reborn as a child. Bancho also came across Jubeh’s father and he gave him a catcher’s mitt, one that will hold up against the strength of the tornado pitch. They also discover that Four-Eyes’ mother has discovered that he plays baseball and is punishing him by keeping him locked in a cage.

Jubeh confronts the woman, defeating her in battle and she explains why she hates baseball so much. Her husband was killed by her eldest son’s powerful pitching skills and he became traumatised and ran away. The story leads Jubeh, Four-Eyes and mother to realise that they are all a family and mother, over-joyed at the return of her son, agrees to let Four-Eyes play ball.

And so a new Seido team goes to confront Gedo High, in vengeance for their fallen team mates and to try to make sure that Gedo can never hurt anyone ever again. The coach mocks the small size of the new team but suddenly a couple of the old players return, including Gorilla, resurrected by cyborg technology…. Yeah. The team is also joined by a cheerleader and Jubeh and Four-Eyes’ mother. The game begins.

And it’s quickly over. Soon the only people left concious are Jubeh and the Gedo High coach. They fight with bats until Jubeh is knocked to the ground and the coach gains the upper hand. He reveals a new weapon, a bat filled with poisons and healing herbs that keeps you alive for 100 years in constant pain and agony. The coach slams the bat down towards Jubeh but Four-Eyes jumps in the way, taking the shot instead. Jubeh is furious and manages to take the coach down. He’s about to strike the final blow when the Gedo players beg that he is merciful for they are orphans, taking in by the coach and he;s all the family they have. Jubeh agrees to spare his life

Suddenly one member of the Gedo team begins unloading guns into everyone, his own teammates and the coach included as well as the spectators. Jubeh manages to take the gunmen out by doing some weird move that rips the flesh from his bones. He then sheds a tear as he looks at the carnage around him, a tear that brings everyone back to life. The crowd cheer and the narrator, who had intermittently spoken throughout the film, explains that everyone lived happily ever after except for one man, his owner who died from alcoholism ten minutes earlier. Still he was happy because he was watching baseball. Also the dead man was the narrator’s owner and it turned out the narrator was a dog all along! Kooky.

I honestly don’t know what can be said about this film. I’m not entirely sure what the zombies are that make this a zombie film. Is it the Gedo High team? They all have skin like the zombies from the original ‘Dawn of the Dead’ but it’s never stated that they’re resurrected corpses. Or maybe the fact that pretty much everyone in this film is brought back from the dead at some point qualifies it as a Zombie film. I just don’t know. The point is that zombie film or not, this is that certain brand of weird that only the Japanese can do well.

The plot manages to make sense and make absolutely no sense all at the same time in some kind of way that seems to defy the laws of the universe by it’s sheer existence. Things happen completely randomly without much of an explanation apart from a slight mention in passing. The Deus Ex Machina seems to be operating at full steam, churning out miraculous event and coincidence at an almost constant pace throughout the running length of the entire film.

It’s the kind of film that’ just plain difficult to review. Sure it’s fun but it’s also kind of frustrating, I’d probably recommend you give it one watch and see how you feel about it. It’s not one I can judge for you. Still, my opinion is three pints out of five. Laterz.



Zombie Month: Battlefield Baseball by Jamie

Spoilers ahead. Also, I’m writing this at half four in the morning so don’t expect a masterpiece.

Oh Japan. Japan, Japan, Japan. You’ve previously driven me to the brink of madness with a little film called ‘Executive Koala’ and now it seems as though you seek to do it again. This time the film is called ‘Battlefield Baseball’ and it easily rivals that koala film in terms of batshit crazy if not surpassing it completely it’s also another film that leads me to wonder just who at Wikipedia is determining what is and isn’t a Zombie film. Anyway, on with the ‘plot’.

Kocho, the Seido High School principal and baseball coach is excited because his team finally has a chance of going all the way to Koshien Stadium in the big tournament thanks to their star player, the Gorilla. This excitement quickly becomes despair however when it is revealed that their first match is against Gedo High, a team that slaughters their opponents because it’s legal to do during a baseball match for some reason.

Then a new student appears, Jubeh, saving the teams worst player Four-Eyes from the leader of a gang of bullies Bancho who hates baseball. It turns out that Jubeh is a great baseball player but he refuses to play for some reason. His beating up of Bancho also results in the bully leader having a change of heart about baseball as well as a change of face (for some reason the change of heart makes him change actors because… I dunno. It just does) because Jubeh’s beating healed an old shoulder wound. He joins the team.

Then there’s a song about why Jubeh won’t play baseball. It’s because he once threw a pitch so hard that it killed his father. Still Four-Eyes begs Jubeh to play, explaining that his mother hates baseball and would punish him severely if she were to find out he was playing. Jubeh is touched by Four-Eyes pure love for the game and agrees to join the team.

On the day of the game, however, Jubeh is arrested for some reason. And so the Seido team go and play valiantly without him only to end up completely slaughtered. Jubeh finally gets out of jail and arrives in time to hear the Principal and Bancho lament the loss. He then finds a body he believes to be Four-Eyes before realising that he’s actually still alive over in the dugout. The body is actually a bomb which explodes, killing him.

Jubeh awakes in the afterlife and comes across his father who tells him to embrace his killer pitch, dubbed the tornado pitch. He then rises from the grave to discover that Bancho to is back, this time changing bodies entirely as he is reborn as a child. Bancho also came across Jubeh’s father and he gave him a catcher’s mitt, one that will hold up against the strength of the tornado pitch. They also discover that Four-Eyes’ mother has discovered that he plays baseball and is punishing him by keeping him locked in a cage.

Jubeh confronts the woman, defeating her in battle and she explains why she hates baseball so much. Her husband was killed by her eldest son’s powerful pitching skills and he became traumatised and ran away. The story leads Jubeh, Four-Eyes and mother to realise that they are all a family and mother, over-joyed at the return of her son, agrees to let Four-Eyes play ball.

And so a new Seido team goes to confront Gedo High, in vengeance for their fallen team mates and to try to make sure that Gedo can never hurt anyone ever again. The coach mocks the small size of the new team but suddenly a couple of the old players return, including Gorilla, resurrected by cyborg technology…. Yeah. The team is also joined by a cheerleader and Jubeh and Four-Eyes’ mother. The game begins.

And it’s quickly over. Soon the only people left concious are Jubeh and the Gedo High coach. They fight with bats until Jubeh is knocked to the ground and the coach gains the upper hand. He reveals a new weapon, a bat filled with poisons and healing herbs that keeps you alive for 100 years in constant pain and agony. The coach slams the bat down towards Jubeh but Four-Eyes jumps in the way, taking the shot instead. Jubeh is furious and manages to take the coach down. He’s about to strike the final blow when the Gedo players beg that he is merciful for they are orphans, taking in by the coach and he;s all the family they have. Jubeh agrees to spare his life

Suddenly one member of the Gedo team begins unloading guns into everyone, his own teammates and the coach included as well as the spectators. Jubeh manages to take the gunmen out by doing some weird move that rips the flesh from his bones. He then sheds a tear as he looks at the carnage around him, a tear that brings everyone back to life. The crowd cheer and the narrator, who had intermittently spoken throughout the film, explains that everyone lived happily ever after except for one man, his owner who died from alcoholism ten minutes earlier. Still he was happy because he was watching baseball. Also the dead man was the narrator’s owner and it turned out the narrator was a dog all along! Kooky.

I honestly don’t know what can be said about this film. I’m not entirely sure what the zombies are that make this a zombie film. Is it the Gedo High team? They all have skin like the zombies from the original ‘Dawn of the Dead’ but it’s never stated that they’re resurrected corpses. Or maybe the fact that pretty much everyone in this film is brought back from the dead at some point qualifies it as a Zombie film. I just don’t know. The point is that zombie film or not, this is that certain brand of weird that only the Japanese can do well.

The plot manages to make sense and make absolutely no sense all at the same time in some kind of way that seems to defy the laws of the universe by it’s sheer existence. Things happen completely randomly without much of an explanation apart from a slight mention in passing. The Deus Ex Machina seems to be operating at full steam, churning out miraculous event and coincidence at an almost constant pace throughout the running length of the entire film.

It’s the kind of film that’ just plain difficult to review. Sure it’s fun but it’s also kind of frustrating, I’d probably recommend you give it one watch and see how you feel about it. It’s not one I can judge for you. Still, my opinion is three pints out of five. Laterz.



Review: The Human Centipede: First Sequence by Jamie

<Sigh>… Well, I’ve been putting this of for long enough. I’ve been trying to write this review for about two weeks or so now and it just hasn’t been very easy. It hasn’t been very easy at all. Sure it’s been easy to talk about the basics of the film at anyone who has been unfortunate enough to run into me since I saw the film but to expand those thoughts into a full on review has proven difficult.

Let me start of by saying that I don‘t think the film is particularly shocking. It just kinda gets under your skin a bit, leaving with you a vague distaste for humanity in general. It‘s kind of like the feeling you get if you accidentally eat a kebab while you‘re sober. You know something’s wrong but you know that ultimately the blame rests with you and you alone because you decided to embark on this endeavour.

Despite the feeling it lives you with, I find it hard to say that it‘s a bad film even though if pressed the best way I could describe it is to say that it‘s something like Saw or any other ‘torture porn‘ film taken to a weird extreme. And even though I generally don‘t like the genre that has been dubbed ‘torture porn’, I can‘t say that I disliked this like I disliked Saw. Oh, and don‘t try and tell me that the first Saw is a good film. It‘s essentially just a series of boring flashbacks. I also can‘t get over the fact that Cary Elwes didn‘t try and saw through the rusty pipe he was chained to before sawing through his leg. There‘s a good chance that would have worked. The Dread Pirate Roberts wouldn‘t have made such a rookie mistake.

Anyway, where was I? Oh yes, The Human Centipede. So I‘m guessing that if you‘ve ever spent anytime on the internet, there‘s a good chance you already know what the plot of this film is. A crazy German scientist kidnaps three tourists and sows them together, anus to mouth because, well… I guess just because he‘s a crazy German scientist and those guys are always up to something.

There is plot before the actual procedure but really who cares? The film is called The Human Centipede and the two characters you spend time with before the Centipede-ification occurs don‘t really have much to say afterwards if you catch my drift. All you really need to know is that they are friends who will soon be getting better acquainted then they ever thought they would.

I should also point out that according to the director and the film‘s poster, the procedure itself is actually scientifically accurate and could possibly work if actually carried out. Knowing that before seeing the film probably didn‘t do anything to abate that feeling of unease that I got whilst watching it. Anyway, after said procedure the crazy German scientist tries to train his new six legged pet almost as he would a dog, trying to teach it to fetch the paper, eat from a dish on the floor and locking it up in a cage to sleep at night. This training procedure is really quite effective at giving you the sense that not only have the three captives been dehumanised in the worst manner possible physically but he‘s also trying to dehumanise them mentally as well. Apparently it‘s effective in my mind since I just referred to them as it earlier on.

Anyway it turns out that despite everything, his victims aren’t going to willingly give up their identities in order to become this twisted bastard’s pet. The front piece in particular, a Japanese tourist, is particularly resistant to the scientists attempt to train him. Of course the reason that he is the one that rebels the most is possibly simply because being at the front provides him the opportunity to do so. The fact that he is Japanese provides rather an interesting language barrier between him and the scientist, making the training scenes even more drawn out and tortuous.

God, have I even really written anything of consequence in this review? I feel like I‘m just rambling on and on. I‘m honestly having a ridiculously difficult time writing this. I think that what it comes down to is the fact that I have very mixed feelings about it. I didn‘t like it but I didn‘t hate it. I didn’t find it shocking but I didn‘t find it an easy watch. It‘s not particularly graphic but there were times when I had to look away from the screen and the final scene is one of the worst things I‘ve ever seen happen to a human being in a film with the exception of perhaps ‘Jack Ketchum‘s The Girl Next Door‘.

At the end of the day, I think most people know whether or not they‘re going to see this film as soon as they hear the title and get the basic gist of the plot. It‘s certainly not a film I can recommend to anyone because it‘s hard to tell how anyone would react to this film. I thought I‘d find it kind of funny but I really didn‘t so if I can‘t gauge how I would react to the film properly, how could I suggest it to others? If I had to give it a rating, I‘d have to give it a 2.5 out of 5 simply because it‘s the middle rating and my mind has been very ‘in the middle‘ with regards to this film, even two weeks after watching it. I guess my final words are you already know whether or not you‘re going to watch this film. If you do, don’t go into it with any expectations as they‘ll probably be wrong… except for the expectation of seeing three people sewn together ass to mouth. That‘s one expectation that will definitely be met. Laterz.

Oh yeah, watching that trailer again reminded me that the two girls who make up the middle and back of the centipede aren’t particularly great actors though after a while they don’t have much acting to do beyond panicked looks and muffled screams and I suppose you have to take what you can get when the roles are what they are in this film. The Japanese guy, played by Akihiro Kitamura, is pretty good and the German scientist, played by Dieter Laser, is actually quite brilliant and definetly the best part of the film. Oh, and ‘Mantipede’ would have been a better title.



WTF: Executive Koala by Jamie

Yes, it’s time to take a look at some of the more bizarre films that have been released throughout the world and I’m gonna be honest from the get go, a lot of these films are gonna be from Japan. They just have a way with the pants crappingly insane and I love them for it. In that vein, the first film I’m going to be looking at is the 2005 film, ‘Executive Koala’ directed by Minoru Kawasaki.

Christ, I’m not even sure where to start with this though the beginning seems to be a pretty good place. The film opens with a happy little song which seems even odder once you get into what the film is actually about. The song is a accompanied with strange little ‘Hello Kitty’ style illustrations of a koala in a business suit performing various actions such as exercising and urinating up against a pole. Allow me to transcribe the lyrics, as they were in the translation I found, to this most awesome song.

‘He’s got such cute eyes,
He’s got gray fur
He’s a sweet thing
He’s a happy-go-lucky kind of guy
Restructuring, emotion
Nothing gets him down
Extramarital affairs, getting a divorce,
The world is beautiful
Go! Executive Koala!
Go! Executive Koala!
You don’t want to make him mad
Go! Executive Koala!
Go! Executive Koala!
A world filled with love
Is just ahead of us
Koala
Koala’

So yeah. I hope that gives you a small taste of the things to come. So the film opens and we learn that Executive Koala is appropriately enough an executive at a pickling company. A pickling company that is run by a six foot tall anthropomorphic bunny. It just makes sense. Life is pretty good for the Koala named Tamura. He’s got a sweet job which he’s very good at, makes a decent living and has a human girlfriend. Then, one day, his human girlfriend is murdered and he is quickly made the prime suspect.

There isn’t any direct evidence against him however and so he is allowed to go free… For now! Anyway, he begins a new project at work in which he tries to convince the head of a Korean kimchi supplier to enter into a business partnership. This leads into a montage wherein Tamura takes the head of the kimchi company around what I assume is Tokyo, sightseeing and such. Keep in mind that Tamura is a human sized, anthropomorphic koala wearing a business suit. Oh, and it also turns out that the head of the kimchi company has a pet flying squirrel that’s about the size of a small dog.

Seriously, what the fuck has happened to animals in this world? Why are there giant ones wearing clothes? Why are there others that are bigger than they should be? Is it all because of some bizarre genetic experimentation? Why does this film have a frog that runs a convenience store? It can’t be millions of years in the future when animals have evolved to this point naturally because it’s clearly the modern era.

Anyway, it turns out the Mr. Kimchi, who’s name I just can’t be bothered to find out, was a former lover of Tamura’s ex-wife who has been missing for some time. It turns out that they were in correspondence for some time whilst she was with Tamura and she sent him photos of herself after Tamura beat her, events that Tamura himself fails to remember.

Anyway, it turns out that Tamura used to be the head of the pickling company but, because of some horrific racial memory of what Western settlers did to his more arboreal and normal looking ancestors 100 years ago (Which means that either Koala‘s evolve incredibly rapidly or yeah, it‘s some sort of genetic experiment thing), he had a deep seated hatred for humans, a hatred he used to take out on his wife. His rabbit boss and his psychiatrist inform him that he killed his wife and they erased his memory of this incident and the rabbit took control of the company. Believing that he has killed his ex-wife and his girlfriend, Tamura decides to turn himself him but the psychiatrist and the rabbit try and stop him and inject him with a tranquilizer.

When Tamura regains consciousness, he finds the rabbit and the psychiatrist dead and is quickly arrested and sent to Alcatraz which seems to be in Japan now for some reason. Whilst there he suffers at the hands of the other inmates but is soon rescued and released from prison by Mr. Kimchi’s giant flying squirrel. This is where things really get fucked up.

It turns out that Mr. Kimchi and Tamura’s ex-wife have been going around killing people and making it seem as though Tamura was the culprit in order to exact their revenge. It also turns out that Tamura’s girlfriend was really his ex-wife wearing a mask. Oh, and his ex-wife learned the ancient Korean method of resurrection from Mr. Kimchi which is why she isn’t all dead and that. It just makes sense.

Anyway, his wife is about to shoot Tamura when the detective who arrested him jumps in the way of the bullet. He tells Tamura that he has found out he is innocent and a battle ensues between Tamura, his wife and Mr. Kimchi. They knock each other out and awaken at sunrise. Then they… all laugh… at the sunrise… and become friends with Tamura and his wife deciding to get remarried. They kiss while Mr. Kimchi applause, his applause apparently bringing the shot detective back to consciousness. Guess he knew the ancient Korean method of resurrection as well. Good for him. He applauds the koala and his wife as well, apparently forgetting about all of the murders she committed and the fact that she shot him. They all stand together and stare into the distance whilst a circular rift in time and space appears in the top-left corner to reveal the shop-keeping frog I mentioned earlier who is also now applauding. There the film ends.

Right. Well. I feel like I’ve been brain raped. I’m not sure exactly what happened here and I’m fairly sure my synopsis hasn’t really helped you figure out what happened here. The plot is actually fairly normal right up until that batshit crazy ending and it would actually be quite boring except for the fact that everything that’s happening is happening to a god damn six-foot tall koala fucking bear. The suit that the guy wears is actually quite impressive. It blinks, the mouth opens and it has two thumbs, just like a real koala. It doesn’t make the film any less insane but it is quite cool. The frog looked dodgy though.

So yeah… Umm, I’m not really sure what else to say about this except it was actually quite entertaining. I really have to check out some of this guys other films which include titles such as ‘Calamari Wrestler’ and ‘Crab Goalkeeper’. I think this dude has found his niche, job plus animal, and is sticking with it. Good for him. Overall I give Executive Koala three and a half pints out of five. Laterz.




%d bloggers like this: