Thursday, 4 September 2014

Ninja Apocalypse


Directed by: Lloyd Lee Barnett
Written by: Ashley Scott Meyers
Starring: Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, Les Brandt, Christian Oliver & Ernie Reyes Jr

So there’s been a great war resulting in an apocalypse from a huge bomb going off, leaving the lands ravaged and turning its survivors into wandering clans of highly skilled ninjas: so far so awesome. Said ninja clans are then summoned by the grandmaster ninja of them all, Fumitaka (Hiroyuki-Tagawa), to a bunker deep underground where he is swiftly murdered in front of all the clans. The Lost Ninja clan, led by the cool and collected Cage (Oliver), are blamed for the slaying and the other ninja clans set about trying to kill them, swearing revenge. Trapped deep below ground, framed and with not only pissed off ninjas but zombies(!) on their tail as well, Cage and his clan fight their way to the top through an ever increasing amount of foes. Fights, magic powers, swords, zombies, more fights and even a bit of gore ensue: freaking sweet!

Ninja Apocalypse is an absolute hoot made all the more fun by its aim to not explain everything (it’s a post-apocalyptic future with ninjas who all have magic powers: that’s just the way it is!) but its determination to entertain and thrill. Made by skilled visual effects and action department folks, the film takes these two aspects and welds them into a fun and fast ride giving us the viewer plenty to feast our eyes on: both visually and action wise. So along with well staged and energetic fights we get cool enhanced powers with ninjas able to shoot fireballs from their hands and ignite their swords ala Star Wars lightsabers which gives the action a fresh visual kick. Part post- apocalyptic movie, part Mortal Kombat and part 80s ninja film, Ninja Apocalypse delivers on its awesome title and supplies action, ninjas and even zombies, by the bucket load. Ok, so the zombies are only a small part of the actual action and those just expecting ninjas vs. zombies throughout may be disappointed but with lots of well staged fights and a momentum that rarely slacks one has plenty of ninja action to feast their eyes on. 

The flick also, surprisingly, has quite a serious tone with all the principals giving it their all in both the acting and action. Perhaps another a joke or two wouldn’t have gone a miss to lighten the tone a bit but the reluctance to wink at the camera is actually refreshing giving the character's plight and the action more of an edge. As mentioned the cast really go for it and really sell the over-the-top nature of the film with Lost Ninja clan member Trillion (Kaiwi Lyman) really standing out. Also nice to see genre legends Cary Hiroyuki-Tagawa and Ernie Reyes Jr in there and they even get their own fight scenes as well. The action is crisp and creative even if the end smack-down does end a little abruptly but overall Ninja Apocalypse is a blast: fast and furious with an abundance of ninjas and swordfights. 



1 comment:

brian january said...

You've got some awesome picks here! My lists are more mainstream--I'm going to have to check these out!

Brian January