Filled with gratuitous panty and bra shots, glowing vaginas, masochists and a superhero that runs around wearing nothing but a mask and a scarf, Kekko Kamen is unlike any movie you have ever seen (or would want to). This horrifyingly low budget action movie is based on the manga and anime by Go Nagai who is known for his depictions of graphic violence and sex. Not much of his work has found its way overseas, but you may have heard of some such as Devil Man, Devil Lady and Cutey Honey.
For a guy who is so well known in Japan, you'd think he'd want his film to promote his work and be of high quality; unfortunately that's not the case at all here. As I was watching the movie I felt as though I was being subjected to low-grade softcore porn without the sex. If you take the sex out of the porn, what are you left with? A lot of attractive people, some nudity and a horrible plot, gee that sounds an awful lot like Kekko Kamen.
While the story has a lot of characters, for the most part it focuses on a young girl named Mayumi Takahashi. She aspires to be a first class news anchor so she attends the premier school in that field, the Mangriffon Announcer Academy. The school does have a few guys attending, but it is mostly a girl's academy so if cute Japanese school girls are your thing, you'll be in heaven.
It would seem that the teachers and administrators of the school have the school girl fetish, because they only admit girls that are attractive or have large boobs. They also are very voyeuristic since there are cameras everywhere from the exterior, to the bathrooms, the girl's dorm rooms and underneath desks for all those up close panty shots. This is perverse, sexploitation at it's finest but things only get worse and more muddled as the movie progresses.
Whenever a student falls behind grade wise or breaks a school's rule, they are taken to a torture chamber in the basement. The teachers have some messed up ways for tormenting these girls from brushing their teeth and cutting tomatoes with chainsaws to whipping them and taping them. When this happens, that's when the naked avenger Kekko Kamen appears to save the day.
She bursts into the scene in her birthday suit doing backflips and jumps with her legs spread eagle. Once she's done showing off she dishes out the pain with nunchucks and a special attack called Muffication where her vagina glows and she wraps her legs around her foes neck. That's basically the extent of the movie and what you can expect. The girls never try to escape the teacher's abusive tendencies, so they get tortured and saved relentlessly by Kekko Kamen.
The plot never expands beyond that and it feels like an hour and ten minute naked Power Rangers episode that just gets more ridiculous as it goes on. One of the teachers sucks the energy out of a girl's breast and transforms her into a man to act as a double agent who eventually turns into a super villain that wears panties on his head. Even the last battle is asinine and involves the dean of the school summoning "androids" with a penis remote control.
I do have to admit that a few of the gags and jokes got me to chuckle, but a few laughs aren't worth subjecting yourself to this film. The story is non-existent, the characters are unbelievable and the gratuitous nudity and panty shots are much more degrading than entertaining. Unless you're a fan of Go Nagai's work or enjoy a twisted low-budget movie you're better off avoiding this one all together.
Kekko Kamen is presented with a 1.85:1 widescreen transfer and features some crisp image quality although the visuals go soft from time to time. While there is a lot of grain that finds its way into the picture and there are some bits of edge enhancement, the video looks decent enough considering the low budget feel of the film.
This disc only includes the original Japanese language track with a 2.0 stereo audio feature. There is a decent use of some directional sound, but the absurdity of the material doesn't really need to be heard in surround. You can choose to shut off the English subtitles if you want to, but don't look for any dubbing track in this release.
There are some previews for Cursed, Japanese Hell, Skyhigh and Hellevator included on the disc and there is also a hidden trailer for Kekko Kamen. The only other feature on the release is the Kekko Konference which is a five minute long pre-release talk with the director and some of the actresses of the movie. They address the fact that the film is stupid fun but that's what they were going for and how society needs to be less strict, so by watching this movie they hope peace comes to Japan. Riiiiight.
The only person that will enjoy watching Kekko Kamen is the type of moviegoer that likes low-budget films that don't make sense and are pure sexploitation. If this movie had a real plot and wasn't so absurd it would have had a larger target audience, but as it stands it's just not a good film. You'll get a couple of laughs from it, but in the end an hour and ten minutes of your life could be better spent doing something else. Skip It.
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