Saturday, May 9, 2009

Silver Blobs and Head Vaginas

If you were a comedian from the 1990s, and you had to extrapolate a story based only on the title of Hajime Sato's film Goke, Body Snatcher from Hell, you would probably assume it was a somewhat wacky film about a body snatcher, named Goke, who was either very bad at body snatching, or was both a body snatcher and an unpleasant human being. Had Goke been a civil engineer with one of the aforementioned deficiencies, a 90s comic would jokingly refer to him as "Goke, the civil engineer from hell!" If, on the other hand, you were a Japanese person who was told only the title of this film and then asked to fill in the blanks, you would of course instantly know that the film was about a race of body snatching vampires, called the Gokemidoro, who are from space.

Images like these have inspired Japanese pornographic animators for years.

I watched this film in two parts, separated -- due in part to bad timing, but mostly to forgetfulness -- by about three weeks, so at the moment I'm not equipped to write a full-scale review. From what I can tell, though, the film is about how aliens have been watching us war ourselves stupid, and waiting for just the right time to snatch our bodies and blow up our planet. And we, being the trigger-happy madmen that we are, have finally given them their big chance. O folly. Also, the aliens cause birds to commit suicide. What birds did to get themselves tied up in this mess I have no idea. So it's a tragedy, this film, and also a cry for reason.
The thing I enjoyed most about Goke, Body Snatcher from Hell was the dialogue. This thing is filled with winners, though of course there can be only one true champion. Among the runners-up are:
Humanism! Just what we need!
I don't want to die! You die instead!
But the line I liked most requires some context. The film revolves around a group of plane-crash survivors who, as the film progresses, get picked off one by one by one of the aliens (except for one guy, who gets accidentally knocked off a cliff by a fellow survivor. These things happen). One of the surivors is an assassin, who briefly takes a stewardess hostage and runs off with her into the rocky surroundings of the crash-site. He and the stewardess stumble onto the aliens' base-camp, and the assassin's body gets snatched, which involves becoming hypnotized by a blinding light, having his forehead split open -- forming the head vagina seen above -- and passively allowing the silver alien blob to crawl inside the wound. The stewardess witnesses all this, but escapes unharmed. When she returns to the crash-site, she describes in detail every lunatic event she's just seen to her fellow survivors. After her story is told, one of them says:

A blinding light? That's impossible!
Personally, I think that sums up Goke, Body Snatcher from Hell quite nicely. This has been a recommendation.


Ryan Kelly said...

And on your deathbed, I hope you think to yourself "Goke, Body Snatcher from Hell. Time well spent!"

Though we all need humanism. That's a universal message right there.

bill r. said...

Ryan, I probably should have added that the "humanism" line is delivered with contempt. Which doesn't change the film's message that war is bad and humanism is good. What a wonderful thought in these troubled times.

Ryan Kelly said...

Seriously, Goke, Body Snatcher from Hell has the power to be a very serious uniter in these recession and war plagued days.

Greg said...

Ryan, I probably should have added that the "humanism" line is delivered with contempt. ...

Actually not necessary, Ryan's just a little slow.

And blinding lights... when will people finally realize they are not the stuff of legend? I've told tales of the flash of how a nuclear bomb can blind someone, of how staring at the sun can blind someone, of how lasers shot at the eye can blind someone - And yet - AND YET - people still look at me strangely and say, "No fool, only dark clouds and shadows can blind someone."

One day they will learn. One day.

Ryan Kelly said...

Is it mother's day, your wife's birthday, or International Disparage Ryan day?

bill r. said...

Ryan, it must be the third one, because I don't know what the other two have to do with disparaging you. Also, it's Mother's Day.

Greg - I must admit, until watching this film, I'd never heard of a "blinding light" before. I'd heard of people's heads splitting open so that aliens could invade their bodies, but a blinding light? What is this, Doctor Who??

But then I looked it up, and apparently there is such a thing. Everyday I learn something new because of blogging.