Monday, January 11, 2010
DEMON CITY SHINJUKU
A gorgeously malignant and atmospheric anime from the early 90s, DEMON CITY SHINJUKU is the tale of a demonic zone that erupts in the middle of Tokyo. Ten years after its appearance, a warrior must travel to the zone's center to face the evil that killed his father, and quash a scheme that would turn the zone into a portal for demons bent on world destruction.
Eschewing science and logic (and the tentacle porn that would come to define this kind of horror), the makers of DEMON CITY SHINJUKU create a memorable and colorful nightmare. A number of impressive creatures enter the fray on both sides, but the movie's real strength is its surreal mise-en-scene. The noodle vendor and his cart, serving the city's denizens in the dead of night. Puddles that become vast underwater worlds. The unspoken back stories of the humans who live among the demons in the shattered city. The dream-like fantasy outweighs the often questionable soundtrack and largely sub-standard English dub, and the vivid primary-colored imagery lingers in the subconscious.