News & Interviews for Zebraman
Critic Reviews for Zebraman
Its odd clash of shifting sensibilities is just as often wearisome as engaging.
...it also has an undeniable charm, and the kitschy, CGI-enhanced special effects add greatly to the amusement factor.
Frequent readers may have noticed my fondness for films by Japanese cult director Takashi Miike. So it pains me to report that his Zebraman is a disappointment.
Utterly delightful...a loving spoof on the Ultraman tradition of 1960s and '70s low-budget Japanese TV superheroes.
Miike directs with due care and attention and comes up with the odd striking image, but the material is so inert that nothing can stifle yawns.
A downtrodden schoolteacher, a disabled boy and a government agent suffering from an embarrassing itch are the unlikely heroes of Zebraman.
Audience Reviews for Zebraman
When amorphous green aliens invade Yokohama, a wimpy schoolteacher dons the costume of an obscure TV superhero to fight them. A bit too much drama and character development for an action/comedy, but there are enough of director Miike's trademark weird sequences, without his sometimes off-putting perversity, to make this (mostly) kid-friendly effort interesting.
Takashi Miike is a really hard director to place a genre on because he is all over the map with his films. Zebraman is one of those with no R-rated material, but it is just as out there as any other Miike movie. Well, not totally out there. It is fairly easy to make sense out of this, although it is without question, different. Heck, look at the title. Zebraman.
People tend to label this picture as a comedic superhero flick. This movie does have its share of laughs, but there is a serious tone behind it all. It is Miike's abstractness and out of the blue scenes that get the laughs, while at the same time bringing out a "what the h***?" look. I can't believe I'm saying this, but the lack of these types of scenes is a letdown. That leaves this 115 minute film a little bland and slow going.
In a film with "Power Ranger" type costumes, there is a place for CG. At times the CG is quite brilliant and at others it doesn't look all that great, but at the end of the day it doesn't really matter. Miike's little green men have this cute but sinister look going for them. They actually look pretty darn cool in my book.
Sho Aikawa dressing up as Zebraman is pretty hilarious to see. The attractive Kyoka Suzuki is a little weird in here, but so is everything else. She does look good as "Zebranurse." The rest of the supporting cast is OK.
Zebraman is a hard movie to pass up for Miike fans. Take my advice and just watch it. "Turn on the black and white."
You can't say no to a movie with Sho Aikawa in a superheroe outfit fighting aliens, tokosatsu-style. Some pacing issues keep this from being better, neverless, good ol fun. Zebra-nurse was hot.
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