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Cutie Honey
Cutey Honey

Japan 2003
produced by
Gainax, WoWow Inc
directed by Hideaki Anno
starring Eriko Sato, Jun Murakami, Mikako Ichikawa, Eisuke Sakai, Mitsuhiro Oikawa, Sie Kohinata, Hairi Katagiri, Mayumi Shintani, Masaki Kyomoto, Ryuhei Matsuda, Toru Tezuka, Hideko Yoshida
based on a manga by Go Nagai

Cutie Honey

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Terrorist organsiation Panther Claw try to kidnap Cutie's uncle, but for her valiant efforts to fight them - she even defeats one of their leaders, Gold Claw (Hairi Katagiri) -, superheroic android Cutie Honey (Eriko Sato) is only threatened with arrest by pretty but stuffy police officer Natsuko (Mikako Ichikawa), at her day-job she is scolded for being late at work (because of saving uncle), & ultimately uncle is abducted all the same, to god knows where.

Searching for clues in the guise of Natsuko, Cutie cannot come up with much, until Seiji (Jun Murakami), a shady scientist on Cutie's trail, gives her some information on Panther claw: That they have killed Cutie's father, who has once turned her into a robot, & now need a research scientist in the fields of robotics ... & Cutie's uncle fits the bill perfectly. & behind Panther Claw is a mythological, plant-like superhuman, Sister Jill (Eisuke Sakai), who will stop at nothing to get to the secrets of Cutie Honey's power ... even if that means to fight Cutie Honey herself ... problem is of course that nobody knows who Cutie Honey is in her private life: clumsy office worker Honey Kisaragi, who seems to have enough problems handling her normal life, let alone superheroics ...

Nobody knows it, but police officer Natsuko is determined to find out & secretly follows Cutie everywhere she goes, until she has enough evidence that Cutie is really the poor office-girl ... but of course Panther Claw have followed Natsuko, so when she thinks she can arrest Cutie, it's all of a sudden Cutie & Natsuko versus Cobalt Claw (Sie Kohinata), an elite fighter of Panther Claw, in Cutie's office building.

& during the fight, Cutie gets so angry & heated up that she actually burns Cobalt Claw with her body heat, before collapsing herself.

Natsuko, who knows she owes her her life, drags Cutie to her home to get her out of harm's way.

Soon, the 2 girls are joined by journalist Seiji, who always seems to know more than he should (little wonder, since he is secretly working for the CIA), & over a few drinks the three decide to join forces in their fight against Panther Claw ... even if the next morning the first thing they have to fight is a terrible hangover.

Sister Jill goes to the offensive & invites the trio to her tower, which turns out to be a giant drill right under Tokyo Tower that, once it emerges, lifts Tokyo Tower a few hundred meters into the air. And to soften Cutie up, Sister Jill arranges for Cutie to fight her 2 remaining top fighters - Scarlet Claw (Mayumi Shintani) & Black Claw (Mitsuhiro Oikawa) - along the way ... which Cutie defeats, but she uses up almost all of her reserves & arrives at the tower's top (& at Sister Jill's) virtually powerless ... & to up the ante, Sister Jill has since taken Natsuko hostage, which leaves for Cutie but one alternative ... to join Jill in her eternal life, thus giving her all her android secrets ... but Cutie, the Warrior of Love, has still one weapon left ... LOVE, & with love alone, she manages to defeat Sister Jill, who has cleansed herself of all human emotions long ago -  & has thus no way to fight Cutie ...

 

Based on a manga by Go Nagai, that was turned into an animated tv-series as far back as 1973, Cutie Honey, the movie, is at times deliberately cheesy, & always tongue-in-cheek in its depiction of comicbook superheroics ... much like Go Nagai's manga was in the first place.

The inherent (& ironic) cheesyness of the film is manifested in an overly colourful direction, laughable plastic costumes, sudden musical numbers, the kitsch ending in which love defeats everything & of course the villains over-the-top villainy (e.g. lifting the Tokyo Tower with a giant drill - a bit reminiscent of Golden Bat, a superhero-film starring Sonny Chiba from 1966, actually).

Taken as a good joke, Cutie Honey is completely enjoyable & a fun ride from beginning to end - even if it might miss a certain degree of afterthought that could have made it so much more (... then again, maybe not).

 

 

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
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... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD