Monday, October 21, 2019


Scare-A-Thon Totals to Date:

Total Movies Watched: 19
Total First Time Views: 9
Amount raised for AMAZON WATCH: $1,510.88

Bloody Muscle: Bodybuilder in Hell (2012) d. Shinichi Fukazawa (Japan) (62 min) (1st viewing)

Shinji (Shinichi Fukazawa) is a young and hunky gent who likes to lift the weights and take care of his body, but he’s also the kind of guy who picks up the phone when his ex-girlfriend (Masaki Kai) calls asking him if she can take photos of his deceased father’s supposedly haunted love nest to see if anything spectral shows up. He’s also the type to drive over with said ex-girlfriend and a rent-a-spiritualist medium (Asako Nosaka) to open the door so they can check the place out. And he’s definitely the type to kick some demon/zombie ass should the occasion arise, which it does in very short order.

Literally also known as “The Japanese Evil Dead” on the poster art, writer/director star Fukazawa wears his adoration for Sam Raimi’s breakout film on his bloody sleeve (which has promptly been torn off and thrown to the floor to show off his awesome bulging guns), which is to say that it’s more fan-film redux than ripoff. Using the same low-tech gore effects and aggressive camera movements as its inspiration, the story revolves around a trio of young adults taking turns being possessed by evil spirits and either attacking and/or fending off their companions nonstop for the majority of its satisfyingly brief runtime.

There is no real plot: Dad murdered his mistress and buried her beneath the floorboards and, 30 years later, she’s super pissed about it. What there are are MOMENTS, and some of those moments are pretty darn entertaining, such as the “knife through the eyeball and back” stunt and the disembodied foot attack that almost matches Ash’s metacarpal mayhem from Evil Dead II. There are prolonged blood-spattered sequences and a lot of flexing, Bruce Campbell quoting, and fisticuffs and footicuffs aplenty.

Is Bloody Muscle a good movie? Probably not. But, then again, many could argue that Raimi’s debut is no great cinema shakes either, intrinsically speaking, surviving purely on youthful energy and long, stringy guts. Is it silly? Absolutely. Is it enjoyable? The enthusiastic crowd assembled at the Music Box of Horrors Saturday night certainly thought so. If you’re looking for an Asian twist on an old favorite, your search is over, friends.

At present, it looks like the only home video release available is an R2 DVD from Terra Cotta from 2017, although I’m fairly sure Wild Eye Releasing was the logo before our DCP screening, so drop them a line and see if they plan to drop this baby on shiny silver disc anytime soon.


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