Written by: Michael Den Boer on August 1st, 2008
Theatrical Release Date: Japan, 2008
Director: Yoshihiro Nishimura
Writer: Kengo Kaji, Sayako Nakoshi, Yoshihiro Nishimura
Cast: Eihi Shiina, Itsuji Itao, Shôko Nakahara, Sayako Nakoshi
DVD released: January 13th, 2009
Approximate running time: 109 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1 Japanese, Dolby Digital Stereo Japanese, Dolby Digital 5.1 English, Dolby Digital Stereo English
DVD Release: Media Blasters / Tokyo Shock
Region Coding: Region 1 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.99
Synopsis: In the future crime is rampant. The police have been privatized which allows them to exterminate criminals with immunity. Public enemy number one are mutants known as Engineers. When injured these mutant psychopaths have the ability to merge their wounds with weapons. Raku is the daughter of a slain police officer. She is the most gifted officer on the force with her uncanny ability to kill Engineers.
Tokyo Gore Police was directed by Yoshihiro Nishimura who created the special makeup effects artist Suicide Club, Meatball Machine, Sukeban Boy and The Machine Girl. Visually Tokyo Gore Police doesn’t miss a beat with its hyper active depiction of violence. There are severed limbs, skulls are split in half and a woman is who is tied to four police cars is torn into four sections. One of the most satisfying aspects of this film is its endless flow of blood that just gushes and sprays like water bursting through a dam.
My favorite moment visually is a scene where a pervert on the subway fondles Ruka. She then chops off his arms so he can’t molest anyone else. Just like the other kill scenes the blood starts following and she opens her umbrella to cover herself from the crimson shower. Even with all this carnage and chaos this film does manage to inject some humor albeit of the tongue and cheek variety. Throughout this film there are commercials for items to help you hara-kiri.
Even though the gore and bloodshed are off the map in this film there is so much more to this film. The plot for Tokyo Gore Police is surprisingly good with its well developed characters and their back-stories. The core of the story revolves around a young woman named Ruka who works for the Tokyo police. Her father was a former police officer who was murdered by a rogue cop. She helps rid Tokyo of its criminals while searching for the man that killed her father. The main sub plot involves a Scientist who created the Engineers. He also has ties to Ruka which will lead her to her fathers’ killer. Besides the revenge that Ruka and the Scientist seek the plot also explores how government can abuse its power.
Cast in the lead role Ruka is Eihi Shiina whose most memorable performance to date is her turn as the Femme Fatale Asami Yamazaki (Kiri kiri kiri kiri kiri kiri!) in Takashi Miike’s Audition. Eihi Shiina does an amazing job with not only during the action and gore moments. She is even more mesmerizing in expressing her characters pain. The scenes were Ruka craves up her arms with a razor blade are by far the most disturbing in the film. Ultimately Tokyo Gore Police is a satisfying mix of perversion, gore and mayhem.
Tokyo Gore Police is presented in an anamorphic widescreen that preserves the film’s original aspect ratio. Colors look vivid (especially reds) and nicely saturated throughout. Flesh tones look healthy and black levels are remain strong throughout. There is a lot of movement in this film and the image remains stable and razor sharp throughout. There are no problems with compression, artifacts or edge enhancement. All around this transfer looks exceptional it is hard to image it looking any better than it does on this DVD release.
This release comes with four audio options, two audio mixes in Japanese a Dolby Digital 5.1 and A Dolby Digital stereo and two audio mixes in English a Dolby Digital 5.1 and A Dolby Digital stereo. All four audio mixes sound evenly balanced. There are no audio defects. Overall all four audio mixes do a good job presenting the films active soundtrack, especially the Dolby Digital 5.1 mixes. Removable English subtitles that are error free, easy to follow and understand have been included.
Extras for this release are limited to a theatrical trailer for Tokyo Gore Police (5 minutes) that is in Japanese and English subtitles have been included. Also included with this release are trailers for other Tokyo Shock titles that are available on DVD. Tokyo Gore Police gets a strong DVD release that makes up for its lack of extra content with its superb audio/video presentation.