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HARD REVENGE MILLY
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Reviewed by: JimmyO

Directed by: Takonori Tsujimoto

Starring:
Miki Mizuno
Rei Fujita
Kazuki Tsujimoto

Movie:  
star star star star
Extras:  
star star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about
A young woman who barely survives a brutal attack on her and her family seeks revenge. This time around she has the help of living in a futuristic society. Sort of a Book of Eli meets Kill Bill.
Is it good movie?
Quentin Tarantino has certainly become a major force in film since Resavoir Dogs. Many filmmakers pay homage or just downright copy from the man. There has never been more truth to this than with the double feature of Hard Revenge Milly and Hard Revenge Milly: Bloody Battle. Much like its obvious inspiration, Kill Bill one and two, Milly (Miki Mizuno) is a woman left for dead who was forced to watch a bunch of baddies kill her husband and child. But since this is in the future, Milly’s body has been enhanced to include weapons including guns and swords and such. But much like “The Bride”, she takes revenge seriously, and is out looking for The Jack Brothers. But once she takes care of them, she has another battle (a bloody one) with another man/machine who happens to be gay.

While both films are together, around 120 minutes, this is a pretty short film considering it is a double feature. In many ways it felt like a hard R series as opposed to an actual movie. And when it came to the first film, it is hard to get past the fact that it is such an absolute Kill Bill clone. From the kills to the fights, even the storyline, nothing about it felt fresh. Here is this poor Milli, who has been rebuilt, in a Bionic Woman kind of way and she is taking bloody revenge against the ones who wronged her. It could be the fact that we’ve seen so many kick ass girls as of late, that the whole premise seemed to be a day late and a dollar short.

As for the sequel, I did appreciate that it felt a little less like the Uma Thurman starring film, and utilized the science fiction a little bit more. But the problem is that the story is really pointless, and just an excuse to pile on the violence. I didn’t feel for Milli much at all. In many ways, the bad guys are the more interesting characters here. The young woman that Milli tried to help get revenge is just kind of sniveling and whiny. Yet, the final battle is a bit of fun, and it features some groovy kills, much like the first film. But it still just feels recycled and unoriginal. If only they had placed a little more though into the story. I will say that as far as rip off’s go, this one at least had the decency to have an occasionally striking visual style.

This double feature is a mixed bag of fun. Sometimes, the fight choreography is amazing, but as good as it can be, it soon becomes tedious. And the fact that every time she chops off somebody’s head or something of that nature, blood explodes out in a river of red, it looks and feels too much like Kill Bill. While it worked when Tarantino did it, it just feels like a cheap rip off here. I guess the whole science fiction angle is here, but for most of the two films, it feels like an afterthought.
Video / Audio
Video: The 16x9 transfer is not too shabby. You get a pretty clean image, clean enough anyway.

Audio: The Dolby 5.1 is also quite good, at least, good enough to hear the flowing blood.
The Extras
Behind the Scenes: Hard Revenge Milly (43:59) is a much too long feature that follows the folks making this blood and action flick. It includes interviews and behind the scenes footage, yet it still feels like a case of too much of a good thing. Hell, this is almost as long as each movie itself. This is usually a good thing, here it is not.

With Behind the Scenes, Hard Revenge Milly: Bloody Battle (14:49), they at least shortened the feature, but it still feels a little stale and not terribly involving. If you really enjoyed the film, this might be more of an interest to you.

It also includes Trailers for both films.
Last Call
Some striking visuals and a couple of interesting fight sequences can’t help save Hard Revenge Milli from being on the dull side. The story and look feel like a poor man’s Kill Bill, and it does too little to stand apart from the Tarantino film. A little bit more creativity might have helped if they had taken the time to do something unique. At least it sometimes looked cool, and Ms. Mizuno does a fine job.
ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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