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Combining yakuza, science fiction, and vampire elements may sound like an outlandish recipe for campy excess in the United States, but former pinku eiga director Takahisa Zeze plays things remarkably straight in this truly unique effort from Japan. In the near future, a group of desolate citizens spend their days and nights in Mallepa, a large refugee community located in the "Asian Special Economic Zone." Though brothers Sho and Shinji survive on the streets with a little resourcefulness and the help of friend Toshi, an encounter with wounded vampire Kei forever changes the course of their lives. Soon after taking Kei back to their hideout so that the desperate vampire may recover, an angry gangster shows up to reclaim a stolen briefcase full of cash. Although Kei is quick to make dinner out of the angry gangster, his efforts to keep his trio of friends from harm is too little too late when the determined gangster fires a fatal bullet into Shinji. When Sho and Toshi plan to rip off a rival gang a decade later, Kei follows and the team soon meets up with similar-minded Chinese troublemaker Son (Wang Lee Hom) and his sister Yi-Che (Zeny Kwok). Soon stalked by the revenge-thirsting rival gang, the trio lose track of their bloodsucking friend in the ensuing melee. It's not long before Sho and Son have a falling out and end up in rival gangs, but can the re-emergence of condemned vampire Kei be enough to bring the two old friends back on the same side of the fence again?
Somewhat "like" a Japanese version of Interview with a Vampire. Japanese culture, japanese setting, wasnt that bad actually.
Moon Child is a Japanese action drama mixed with some vampire science fiction.
The plot is a tad weak in the early going, however the characters and action are good enough to keep this film from becoming a waste of time. At just under two hours, the story spans a good 40+ years, with multiple jumps of months to years as the film progresses. The story also employs a mixture of Chinese and Japanese cultures as the characters interact in multiple languages, including some English.
For the most part, the pacing is moderate as the action and vampire aspect don't play a major role until the ending. Speaking of the action, which is all gun play, it is quite entertaining, despite the fact that it feels a bit out of place from the rest of the movie.
Both leads, Gackt and Hyde, are more known for their music, but they prove that they can act as well. Taro Yamamoto, of Battle Royale fame, Lee-Hom Wang, and Zeny Kwok portray the other big characters nicely. The lovely Anne Suzuki doesn't show up until the ending. This is unfortunate.
Moon Child may not be a bloody action vampire flick, but this is still a movie worth checking out.