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Tokyo Shock: Helldriver (2010)

March 29, 2012

MY CALL:  If you enjoy the occasional film featuring vehicles constructed from body parts and 8-limbed zombie sword fights, then this is probably right up your alley.  For a Tokyo Gore Shock subgenre I give this an “A.”  IF YOU LIKE THIS, THEN WATCH:  Too many to mention.  For guidance or an explanations in the subgenre please refer to my Beginner’s Guide to Tokyo Shock Cinema.  I’ll mention two seminal favorites, though: Tokyo Gore Police (2008) and Meatball Machine (1999).

This typical/low-budget Tokyo Shocker begins with an odd man chumming a pack of some manner of zombie-demons with severed human body parts.  As they feed on the anthro-carrion our chummer “fishes” for deadite heads using a sharp hook at the end of a rope.  Then he removes something that could only be described as an evil wishbone growing out of their foreheads.  We later learn that these “horns” are sued as street drugs, unstable explosives and are the source of undeadity in these zombies. When things get out of hand a random chick (our hero, Kika) with chainsaw-swords and some mean stripper pole skills comes to the rescue…what ensues is just plain silly…a truck flies through the air and Jenga’s a 50’ tower of zombie-demons, one of which a spine with a head at the end of it growing out of his head.

Mommy Dearest Eihi Shiina holding her daughter’s heart.  We’ll call this her “before photo.”

This entrail-rich gem is typical of the genre.  There are lots of arterial sprays unleashing floods of blood beyond reasonable human body’s capacity, detonating body parts, dismemberment galore and, of course, Kika’s backstory.  As a young girl Kika came home to find her crazy bitch mother (Eihi Shiina) and her Japanese punk-redneck uncle in the middle of making sushi out of her father’s legs—in front of him with his legs flesh-picked knee down.  Out of nowhere a meteor strikes the bloodlusted bitch “through” her chest.  So naturally, she rips out Kika’s heart and uses it as her own.  Then she turns into some space-zombiism typhoid Mary and plagues Japan faster than in 28 Days Later.  She is then entombed in some hardened mucus cocoon, from which she emerges as the hive-mother space zombie queen.  Meanwhile, a public figure from a secret government agency stitched up Kika and outfitted her like a samurai-ninjette with a lawnmower engine in her chest so that she could control infected populations.

Our hero, complete with chainsaw-sword and artificial heart/chainsaw motor.

And here’s mommy Eihi after her space-zombie makeover!  She’s been outfitted with some lovely pearls, a demon starfish head-cap, and a rubber horn shaped like an old TV antennae.

Look at how happy (to slay all living things) she is in her “after photo.”

Unlike the devastatingly slow back-story-telling in Machine Girl (2008), Helldriver (2010) is much more effective and stylistic in explaining the origin of this space-zombie outbreak complete with news updates and slapstick government public health infomercials warning about the effects of using ground-up zombie wishbones like it was cocaine.  There are even farcical advocates in support of the not-so-deceaseds’ civil rights.

Director Yoshihiro Nishimua (Vampire Girl vs Frankenstien Girl (2009); Mutant Girl Squad (2010)) learned a lot from writing/directing Tokyo Gore Police (2008).  For example, everyone loves Eihi Shiina (Vampire Girl vs Frankenstien Girl (2009); Tokyo Gore Police (2008); Audition (1999)) and chainsaw fights are cool!  Other nifty additions to this gore flick include an assaulting hail of zombie heads, a zombie miscarriage, a zombie dance party, a zombie head crotch bite, a chainsaw-sword up the tush, a car made out of body parts, and a 50’ tall zombie made out of other zombies that then turns into a giant zombie 747.  The fights are most interesting mid-movie.  The zombie baby, attached by the umbilical cord to zomb-mom, is used as a whip-dagger-harpoon.  There’s a zombie with katanas “growing” out of it that has a sword fight with a bladed car.  And there’s an eight-limbed, sword-spider-zombie nude acrobat chick with baby arm-tusks and a crotch hand.  Say what?  She’s probably my favorite.

For fans of the subgenre this is just plain, exploitative, super-gory fun.  By the way, watch to the end of the credits.  There’s a cute ending.

That starfish thing almost makes it look like she has Yoda ears.

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