• A Review Page For Those Movies You Watch At Home!

    Couch Potato Movie Reviews is, obviously, a blog that exclusively reviews movies. What makes this blog different is the fact that all of the films we are reviewing are all movies that are available on home movie rental companies such as Redbox, Netflix, Blockbuster, and your quickly disappearing neighborhood rental store. This blog is designed to take a more detailed look at those movies that either were sent straight to DVD, received a very limited release in the theaters, or were distributed through the art house or film festival circuit. We will also review those big Hollywood films, but only after they are available for home viewing.

    All the reviews are written by fans of the great art of film making rather than some newspaper reviewer or stuffy film student. We don’t know everything about film but we do know what we like, and we are more than happy to share our opinions with you. What you do with those opinions are totally up to you, although comments are welcome and encouraged.

    Each film review has a one to five star rating at the end of the critique. Here is what those star ratings mean for you couch potatoes:

    * * * * * : Five stars: go and buy this one, don’t just rent it!

    * * * * : Four stars: put this at the top of your rental list.

    * * * : Three stars: average, not bad just not great either.

    * * : Two stars: only rent if you have to see everything.

    * : One star: don’t waste your time with this.

Wild Zero

TITLE: Wild Zero

YEAR: 2000

GENRE: Horror and Comedy

Let’s be honest here: the Asian cinema world has been kicking the collective butt of the American film world in terms of quality horror films for years. Hollywood has not done a very good job in being a leader in this genre and has resorted to re-making many Far Eastern offerings such as The Ring and One Missed Call to usually horrible results. Usually these Asian offerings are pretty serious in tone, but periodically a good amount of humor and over-the-top bloodshed is also tossed into a film for good measure. That is what we have here in the Japanese offering Wild Zero, one crazy horror offering that celebrates its own ridiculous nature.

The film centers on an insidious plot against mankind by an alien force. The aliens come down to earth and start turning the good Japanese citizens into bloodthirsty zombies. And who, pray tell, will save the Japanese from their biggest threat since Hiroshima and Godzilla? Why the post-punk band Guitar Wolf of course! The band, sort of a cross between Motorhead and the Ramones with a 50’s slicked back hair and leather jacket appearance, come out of the local club scene to attempt to destroy the zombies and send the aliens back to their world. Will their fan friend Ace score the beautiful Asian girl? Can Guitar Wolf save the world? Will the Aqua Net hold out long enough to not mess the hair of the band members? Stay tuned!

This film is nicely made and looks great, but what Wild Zero has going for it the most is the ridiculous plot and how far they will go for a good gag. One of the best scenes in the film is a mercenary-type woman taking a shower; the zombies attack in a scene similar to Psycho, but the woman reaches down into the tub and grabs the biggest shotgun this side of an NRA convention and proves that every shotgun has 50-100 rounds in it. She runs to a convenience store, and just before she is eaten Guitar Wolf saves the day by killing the zombies with a barrage of magical guitar picks to the head; the scene right after when the woman asks who Guitar Wolf is while the band members comb their slicked back hair is especially humorous. Another funny scene is when the guitarist of the band pulls a katana out of his guitar and cuts a spaceship in half with a single stroke. Yes, none of this is remotely real and smashes the line between absurd and ridiculous but Wild Zero is fun to watch because of the ludicrousness of the plot and script. The soundtrack is also pretty cool punk rock played by Guitar Wolf, which is an actual band out of Japan.

This film is never going to be considered a horror classic, but Wild Zero is definitely for those people who view films like Street Trash and Dead Alive and laugh their proverbial butts off while watching. Wild Zero is an acquired taste, but it is also an entertaining romp for those who enjoy their bloodshed over the top, their humor completely irreverent, and their plot lines bizarre. Rock-n-roll zombies at its strangest, as if that isn’t odd enough.

* * * 1/2

–Mark

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