Directed by: Akihito Shiota
Starring: Satoshi Tsumabuki, Ko Shibasaki, Kiichi Nakai
Boy, this was a weird one. The best way I can describe the tone of the film is that it’s somewhere between Rurouni Kenshin, Power Rangers, and Lexx. It’s quirky as fuck and when I tried to explain the important plot points of the first 30 minutes to my wife when she came in late, it took nearly 30 minutes to do so. I enjoyed it.
An evil emperor performs a dark magic ritual, sacrificing his unborn son’s organs and body parts to become all-powerful. The devil he deals with turns all those body parts into evil monsters that roam the land, and the baby is born looking like a weird squishy potato. His mom obviously throws him away, but he’s taken in by a weird Geppetto-ish guy who builds arms and eyes and things for the kid. He grows up to be a mysterious swordsman who’s swords are actually embedded in his elbows and pop out when he pulls his arms off. I told you it was weird. He meets a chipper young lady thief who pushes him to defeat the monsters and regain his organs, and eventually they go on to face the emperor himself.
This movie’s pretty cute, and the practical effects they do for the monsters are charming and creative… and VERY Power Rangers-ey. I don’t have a clue how they came up with the premise for this story, but nobody could say it’s not creative. Apparently it’s based on a manga from the 60’s, which explains the film’s biggest flaw: it tries to cram WAY too much into just an hour and a half and can be hard to follow at times because of the complexity and weirdness of its premise. So basically it’s just a movie you have to pay attention to, and you’ll be rewarded with a fun, colorful action adventure story from the mind of an insane person.