Monday, 7 February 2011
Review - 'Alien Vs Ninja.' You'll never guess what it's about.
Yes, it's every bit as simple as it sounds. There's these ninjas, right. And then... get this... there's these aliens. And you'll never guess what, right... the ninjas and the aliens start fighting and shit!
I missed the opportunity to catch this at FrightFest 2010 (see my coverage at Brutal As Hell) because seeing the movie would have meant missing the last train home. Even so, there is no time slot more appropriate for Alien Vs Ninja than the midnight hour. This is filmmaking at its least meaningful and least intellectual, with no motivation other than to provide a short, sharp burst of knowingly absurd, low brow entertainment. And all in all, it does just what it sets out to do. It faces a few hurdles for sure, the biggest being the proliferation of films of this nature coming out of Japan in recent years. From Tokyo Gore Police to RoboGeisha to Big Tits Zombie, world cinema aisles in DVD stores far and wide have been inundated with low budget, DV-shot Japanese movies full of lethal cybernetic appendages, baby doll pin-up leading ladies, and gallons of gore. While amusing at first, the sheer number of these kind of movies has seen the joke get old very fast indeed.
In fairness though, Alien Vs Ninja does stand apart from the aforementioned films in some respects. First off, and this may not be a surprise given that it's only rated 15, it's not so gory a film as some of its forebears. No severed limbs are replaced by Videodrome-esque killer cyborg parts here. Nor is there quite the same emphasis on T&A, given that there's only one female in the ensemble cast. Instead, Alien Vs Ninja plays for the most part as a relatively down to earth beat-'em-up, which just so happens to feature rubbery blue lizard men who wouldn't look out of place in a 70s Doctor Who episode. And happily enough, the fight scenes are for the most part pretty damn good, which cannot be said of all films of this ilk.