From Yohei Fukuda, who directed the bikini-clad cowboy zombie flick Chanbara Beauty and was the cinematographer on the banned shocker Grotesque comes Tokyo Gore School.
Popular student Fujiwara is set upon by a group of students one day without any provocation. He soon finds himself part of a violent new street game in which you earn credits towards getting your personal data removed from an underground website by beating up other students and retrieving their mobile.
When Fujiwara learns that his greatest secret is in danger of being discovered, he’s forced to come up against his best friend in a bid to win the game, while also trying to protect a young girl he has befriended.
A dizzy blend of martial arts street fighting and free-running action, Tokyo Gore School wants to be the new Battle Royale, but it’s not. Nor is it a sequel to the superior Tokyo Gore Police, despite the title similarity.
While it is set in Tokyo and there is a school, there’s no real gore to speak of. There is, however, boundless amounts of energy as the good-looking young cast race about Tokyo’s urban landscape. Yes, there is lots and lots of running around. There’s also lots of loud grunts, mixed in with death metal and techno tracks, and oddly, the Terminator theme.
The characters are pure stereotype and the script is sparse (despite its attempt to comment on school bullying and teen violence). The end product is more music video that fully-fledged feature, and reminded me of boy skaters filming each other trying out new techniques down at the skate park.
For real gore, albeit the laugh-out-loud kind, try the OTT Japanese horror Samurai Zombie. And if you’re looking for superior martial arts action adventure with dazzling fight sequences, then check out Goemon, which also gets a DVD release this week.