Wednesday, February 4, 2009
Fever Dreams Productions followed up the entertaining Noboru Iguchi-directed gore hit The Machine Girl (2008) with Tokyo Gore Police, directed by Yoshihiro Nishimura who did the make up and special effects on The Machine Girl and a number of Iguchi's other films as well as films by directors like Sion Sono and Yudai Yamaguchi. Tokyo Gore Police is his second film as a director, his debut was Speakerman: The Boo (2004) which I haven't seen.
Tokyo Gore Police have all the ingredients necessary to be a worthy follow up to The Machine Girl, a simple enough story, plenty of action, weird weaponry and lots and lots of, sometimes, very imaginative gore. But somehow it fails miserably. It's basically a 60 minute film dragged out to almost two hours, filled with unnecessary, neverending scenes consisting of slow motion and close ups. It doesn't help either that a lot of the action is obscured by a shaky camera and blood spurting everywhere. I know that "too much blood" may be a weird complaint when writing about a film like this but when the blood covers the lense to a degree as to where it's impossible to see what is going on, it's more frustrating to watch than anything.
The acting was another thing that added to the growing boredom I experienced while watching the film. Both Eihi Shiina, who plays the lead, and Itsuji Itao, who is the main bad guy, have been great in other films but here it feels as if they're taking everything too serious and they never really let loose and to me, in the end, it hurt the film.
I think Nishimura's film is closer in tone with Yudai Yamaguchi's and Jun'ichi Yamamoto's Meatball Machine (2005) which is kind of dark and drab but in a good way and which also is a film that Nishimura worked on, than it is with The Machine Girl. Unfortunately, in Tokyo Gore Police dark and drab turns into just plain boring.
Posted by Executive Koala at 9:37 PM