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JAPANORAMA - MAD SCIENCE JAPAN-O-RAMA01 Yukie Kawamura, Eri Otoguro, Takumi Saito, Eihi Shiina, Takashi Shimizu, Sayaka Kametani, Yoshihiro Nishimura, Naoyuki Tomomatsu, Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl, 吸血少女対少女フランケン

Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl (吸血少女対少女フランケン): the new girl in school is a vampire, but she’s determined to steal the boyfriend of the resident bad girl. The picture above is a girl with steel from the Tokyo Tower extending her limbs, and legs spinning round her head (to fly), having a fight with a vampire, on the Tokyo Tower, with Mt Fiji in the background… in case it wasn’t clear! The bloodsoaked bloody bloodbath of an opening sets the tone for the movie – it’s fantasy gore, cranked up way past 11. Bad acting, short skirts, stockings, skimpy outfits… feels like it’s dangerously close to – at any moment – turning into a porn film. Every aspect of the most convoluted storyline ever is in there just to get some more blood on the screen, and the FX team go through gallons of the stuff. Acting-wise, it’s not meant to be serious but the expositional narration by the main guy is so lackluster – sounds like the most uninterested person in the world, despite all of the crazy shit happening around him. Vampire Girl vs Frankenstein Girl feels less like a movie, and more like an extreme SFX experiment – and in that respect, it’s alright but there’s not much else in there for people outside of the novelty gore crowd to enjoy.

Score: 3/10

03 Yukie Kawamura, Eri Otoguro, Takumi Saito, Eihi Shiina, Takashi Shimizu, Sayaka Kametani, Yoshihiro Nishimura, Naoyuki Tomomatsu, Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl, 吸血少女対少女フランケン

Porno-esque!

02 Yukie Kawamura, Eri Otoguro, Takumi Saito, Eihi Shiina, Takashi Shimizu, Sayaka Kametani, Yoshihiro Nishimura, Naoyuki Tomomatsu, Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl, 吸血少女対少女フランケン

JAPANORAMA - Kat Scratch BANNER JAPAN-O-RAMA

AUDITION Takashi Miike, Ryo Ishibashi, Eihi Shiina,  Ryu Murakami, Tetsu Sawaki, Yasuhisa Yoshikawa, 

Audition (オーディション, Ōdishon): a TV producer and widower stage a fake TV audition in order to find the latter a new wife, but the best candidate seems too good to be true. The opening half hour feels a little too rom-com-y for a ‘horror’ film (upbeat music, cheesy jokes etc). The film trudges on and after 1hr 15m of setup it gradually becomes weirder and more interesting until the payoff semi-ending finally kicks in. Knowing that there’s something not quite right with the ‘perfect girl’ is a tad unsettling, but you couldn’t have predicted an ending as extreme as this – the sound of bone being sawed is vomit-inducing! There’s a small, but obvious social critique about the time in lines like “The whole of japan’s lonely”, and “Japan is Finished” – not-so-subtle! What makes this worthwhile is that it is a unique horror film in that is doesn’t pander to conventions, or give you what you expect. It also beat the wave of late 2000s movies that kick-started ‘torture porn’/’Splatter’ craze again. As original and unique as Audition is, it’s essentially a psychological drama for this most part with 10 minutes of gore capping off a lot of humdrum!

Score: 5.5/10