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Rise of the Machine Girls

Japan 2019
produced by
Yoshinori Chiba, Yoshihiro Nishimura for New Select, Nishimura Eizo/Nikkatsu
directed by Yuki Kobayashi
starring Yuya Ishikawa, Kanon Hanakage, Tak Sakaguchi, Toshie Negishi, Rie Kitahara, Sachi Nakajo, Hideto Nakanishi, Nishi-kun, Kokone Sasaki, Ririne Sasano, Ryuju Sumikawa, Himena Tsukimiya, Jingi Umemoto, Taro Yabe, Yu Yasuda
written by Yuki Kobayashi, Jun Tsugita, based on characters and concepts created by Noboru Iguchi, music by Kou Nakagawa

Machine Girls

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Sisters Ami (Yuya Ishikawa) and Yoshie (Kanon Hanakage) have been sold to the organ harvesting Dharma corporation years ago, but have since escaped, but not without giving up several organs - including Yoshie's arm) first. These days they perform elaborate trick-shooting and martial arts shows at a circus in the poor part of town. But by night Yoshie, wearing a machine gun in place of her arm, goes on raids against the Dharma corporation with several other slumdogs wronged by Dharma. One night though, Yoshie and her gang are defeated and all but her and her right hand Ryuji are killed - however not before they manage to kill Dharma's top machine girls, who used their big breasts as shields. Ayama (Toshie Negishi), Dharma's CEO, is furious, so she keeps Yoshie and Ryuji to experiment on them.Ami decides to pay Aoyama a visit to beg for forgiveness and pretty much offer whatever it takes for the release of her sister. Aoyama makes Ami humiliate herself, then has her brutally beaten up, and ultimately cuts one of her arms off and throws her into the gutter - but she doesn't release Yoshie, instead she sends Riko, master markswoman with her monstrous Siamese twin growing out of her belly as back-up, to the slums where Yoshie and Ami live to just shoot everybody dead ... everybody but Ami, who's protected by assassin Matsukata, who eventually manages to kill Riko and her twin. Ami and Matsukata vow revenge, so they attach machine guns to Ami's arm stump and enter Dharma headquarters ... to brutally kill everyone in sight and lure Aoyama out into the open - but Aoyama has an unpleasant surprise for them, and it's Yoshie and Ryuji, augmented by guns attached to their bodies, and fully brainwashed to do Aoyama's every bidding ...


Now in direct comparison, Rise of the Machine Girls is no match for the original Machine Girl from a dozen or so years prior (of which this is not a direct remake but re-boot of the concept), mainly because the premise felt much fresher then, its plot was less in-your-face and more thought through, and it didn't try this desparately to go over-the-top all the time. But taken by its own merits, Rise of the Machine Girls is also loads of fun to watch, basically because it seems to know no bounds, it's crazy for crazy's sake, and it seems to serve every Japanese crazy-movie fetish, from school girls to upskirt pics to big guns to body horror to gallons of gore, with a gusto and a wink at the audience. In other words, this is not a movie to be taken seriously, and not to be offended by - and when you manage those two, you'll feel splendidly entertained. True, not much of the story will stick with you for long, and much of what's in this one you might even have seen better elsewhere - but that's not to say this isn't a laugh-out-loud movie, probably best consumed with beer or recreational drugs.


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review © by Mike Haberfelner


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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




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

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

out now on DVD