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OneChanbara – Review May 13, 2009

Posted by Cello in Movie Reviews.


In this increasingly jaded era of cinematic history, the mere utterance of the phrase “video game adaptation” is sure to send waves of nausea and/or furious anger through the veins of even the most laid-back of horror fans. I may be somewhat of a movie buff, but I know what I like. And while Americans love to hate silly videogame based movies, I love them. Granted, there’s nothing inherently wrong with watching lithe Japanese girls annihilate an army of the living dead with a kinetic mixture of CGI-enhanced martial arts and swordplay for roughly 90 unstoppable minutes, but a little substance does, in fact, go a long way.

Based on the popular PS2 & Nintendo Wii game series, OneChanbara brings the adventures of sexy slayer Aya to the big screen in all its katakana-wielding, zombie-slicing glory. To defend her city, she has to take on a quickly multiplying army of zombies that was raised from the dead by a mysterious scientist. Aya is joined in the fight by biker chick Reiko (Hashimoto Manami) who is out to avenge her father’s death and Aya’s half-sister Saki who suddenly shows up in a schoolgirl uniform with a saber of her own. There’s no doubt about it, this is a B-movie. However, chances are your mind will be so dazzled by skimpy bikinis and kung fu zombies and sawed-off shotguns and impossibly evil doctors that you’ll soon forget that the film’s plot is basically non-existent.


It has all the scantily clad cowgirls and over the top, campy, bloody, violence I was hoping for and the combination of boobs, violence, and zombies should make for some good old fashioned mindless entertainment. The action scenes were choreographed very well, especially for a low budget movie. And when I think of low budget video game movies, I think of Uwe Boll and his atrocious movie called BloodRayne. The action scenes in Onechanbara far surpass the lackluster fighting in BloodRayne, where everyone looked like they were just winging their moves as they go along.

The casting for the movie was done well. Eri Otoguro does a good job playing Aya and looks close to her videogame counterpart. Overall, it’s a mildly enjoyable movie. On one last note, this movie proves that any movie that deals with powering up energy, should be made in Japan only please, I’m looking at you Dragonball Z live action movie!!!



1. hagiblog - May 13, 2009

Now this sounds like my kind of movie. I hadn’t realized there was a flick for it but I’ll be going out of my way to pick it up now.
I would assume that everyone knows what they’re getting into when they hear it’s about girls in bikinis fighting zombies. I can’t imagine anyone expected great things for this one.

2. somekindofmuffin - May 13, 2009

Not on Netflix! Oh well. And BloodRayne isn’t the only POS Uwe Boll has made. Everything that guy does is horrid. I will never rent anything by him ever again, I don’t want to give him my money. There needs to be a boycott on Uwe Boll.

3. Heather - May 13, 2009

I’m a fan of both bad videogame adaptation films and bad Sci-Fi. But chicks in bikini’s fighting zombies??????? I think you get what’s advertised and probably shouldn’t expect more.

Have you other Uwe Boll movies? If you haven’t DON’T. They are horrific in a bad way. BTW, word around the campfire is he’s making a third Bloodrayne.

Here’s a list so you can avoid them:

# Stoic (2009)
# Far Cry (2008)
# Tunnel Rats (2008)
… aka 1968 Tunnel Rats (USA: new title)
# BloodRayne II: Deliverance (2007) (V)
… aka BloodRayne 2: Deliverance (Germany: DVD title) (USA: DVD title)
… aka BloodRayne: Deliverance (International: English title)
… aka BloodRayne: The Vampire Chronicles (International: English title: DVD box title)
# Postal (2007)
… aka Postal: Der Film (Germany)
… aka Postal: The Movie (USA: alternative transliteration)
# Seed (2007)
# In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale (2007)
… aka Schwerter des Königs – Dungeon Siege (Germany)
# BloodRayne (2005)
# Alone in the Dark (2005)
# House of the Dead (2003)
… aka House of the Dead (USA: recut version)
… aka House of the dead: Le jeu ne fait que commencer (Canada: French title)
# Heart of America (2002)
… aka Home Room (Australia)
# Blackwoods (2002)
# Sanctimony (2000) (TV)

# Das erste Semester (1997)
… aka The First Semester (International: English title)
# Amoklauf (1994)
# Barschel – Mord in Genf? (1993)
# German Fried Movie (1991) (V)

Cello - May 13, 2009

yeah I saw Alone in the Dark, Tara Reid as a scientist was a dead giveaway the movie was going to be sh*t. I feel bad because I’m half german and we really don’t have any good german director, people will just remember us from Uwe Bolls terrible legacy lol.

4. somekindofmuffin - May 17, 2009

Don’t worry Cello. The Legacies of Fritz Lang, Tom Tykwer, and Werner Herzog are enough to eclipse Uwe.

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