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Junk (1999)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Atsushi Muroga

Starring:
Kaori Shimaura/Saki
Osamu Ebara/Akira
Kyoko/Miha
6 10
PLOT-CRUNCH
The undead and bullets collide when a band of jewel thieves, a scientist and members of the military wind up at the same place (an abandoned factory) with the same problem: rabid zombies! Guess what happens. Nope, this isn’t a love story moochachos!
THE LOWDOWN
If "Resident Evil", "The Evil Dead" and "Reservoir Dogs" would have a dirty unprotected gang-bang; a bastard Japanese child named "Junk" would pop out of its rabbit hole. This toddler is far from original and has a lot of weaknesses, but it made up for its low IQ by managing to highly divert my dumb self for a buck and half. Sometimes I giggled for the right reasons, other times for the wrong ones, but overall, I had a gnarly good time and sometimes that’s all that matters. This was one of those times.

On a screenplay level, don’t even think of violently beating this mental patient for cerebral stimulation. The script showcases crappy dialogue and is filled with more holes than my used up blow-up “Tracy” doll. For example, why did that helicopter pilot keep insisting that he had to leave? Oh yeah, because the script NEEDS him to exit to force the plot into one direction. How did that resurrection scene work again? Oh yeah, it doesn’t matter if it doesn’t make sense...the dead HAVE to rise! And why was the super femme zombie so well preserved in her all of her nudity with such a stylish hair bob? Oh yeah, we need to give the male viewers the occasional boner! She GOT to look good! See what I’m saying?

It doesn’t get much better on a character level. They’re either bland (Yakusa dudes), way annoying (that yelping banshee Akira), silly looking (the Mafia boss aka The Drag Queen as I like to call him) or incredibly incomprehensible (that doctor with the bad English cracked me up every time he spoke...WHAT THE FUCK WAS HE SAYING???). And what was up with not milking Saki’s (Shimaura) razor kool potential to its fullest? I mean, she was all geared up to pull a “Trinity” on our ass with her hot looks and groovy leather digs! Unfortunately, Saki whooped that zombie bootie in all of its slow motion glory maybe twice. We needed more of that into this mix, if you ask me!

So why did I still have an eventful pajama party with "Junk"? Well, there’s no two ways around it; most of its faults had me chuckling like a schoolgirl on acid and laughter my friends, is the third best remedy for the blues next to horror and meaningless sex. And when "Junk" wasn’t doing the satisfying “helium” bit on my brain cells, it was filling my retinas with jamborees of exploitative violence that rarely stopped for a pee break. The film opens with an enthralling jewelry store heist, and then proceeds to take us to zombie heaven where the zombies are wall to wall. It all ends in a volcanic medley of Kung Fu fighting, female flesh and chunky red. YOU WANT SOME FRIES WITH THAT? COME ON!

Visually, the flick was also quite a tasty treat. It was all about spastic exercises in high style that kept my eyes glued to the screen. And when it came to its American Cinema-like feel and its "in your face" camera tricks, this genre monkey owed as much to Tarantino as it did to Raimi. The cherry on top of this whipped creamed bowl of strawberry Jell-O were the sly genre references that made me think that the dude behind this puppy was on our side; we get the serum from "Re-Animator", a score similar at times to the one in "Return of the Living Dead" and the conventions of all of Romero’s dead films.

So overall, "Junk" is one flawed, unoriginal genre exercise but at the same time, it’s a hilarious and enthusiastic horror action flick that gave me the cheap thrills that I craved for the evening. Sometimes you gotta say: screw intelligence! Just entertain me with the goodies! "Junk" is that kind of gal. It aimed to please and got the mother fucking job done. KILL! KILL! KILL!
GORE
The gravy is laid on thick. We get neck piercing, countless bloody head shots, lots of guts munching, guts tumbling out of a wound, nasty zombie bites, a chick cut in half and more!
ACTING
Kaori Shimaura (Saki) is the more appealing character here. If her looks don’t divert you from her bad dialogue, her kool leather jacket will. Osamu Ebara (Akira) is annoying. He whines and sports a Hawaiian shirt that had me calling the fashion police. Miha (Kyoko) has nice tits and a swell blonde wig.
T & A
The lead chick zombie gal shows her breasts very often and we thank her for that from the bottom of our hearts. The ladies get nothing to moist about in here.
DIRECTING
This brother did his homework. He goes all Raimi and shite when it comes to his epileptic camera movements; I also loved the filtered fades, the freeze frames, the slow motion and the cinematic posturing. This one is all about eye-candy.
SOUNDTRACK
We get a subtle and effective score. We also get potent techno, and a country guitar twang. Varied and gnarly.
BOTTOM LINE
JUNK ‘s screenplay, poor acting and strong air of “deja-vu” are its main flaws, but its shortcomings had me laughing so hard that I found some worth in them as well. Couple that with its crowd-pleasing mayhem-inclined tendencies and you get fun in a bottle for the right and the WRONG reasons. It also comes down to the “Testosterone Checklist” being covered. Tits? Check. Guns? Check. Hot cars? Check. Robbery? Check. Zombies? Check. All kinds of slaughter? Check. Crazy visual style? Check. If that horror grocery list talks to you, maybe JUNK will too.
BULL'S EYE
The film’s original Japanese title is Shiryour gari.
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