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Being a failure as a teacher and a family man, Shinichi tries to escape everyday life by dressing up as "Zebraman", the superhero. Although the TV series was canceled after only 6 episodes, this cannot stop him from acting out his escape fantasy in a self made zebra-suit. He gets more then he could ever wish for when his black-and-white dressed alter-ego seems to be the only thing to stand between absolute (green) evil and a happy ending. Written by
During the introductory section of the film, Shinichi Ichikawa/Zebraman, is watching a parody of Super Sentai/Power Rangers where the hero fights Sadako Yamamura from "The Ring". Ironically, this seems to predict the plot of the 2007 film, "Kamen Rider: The Next", which features a Sadako-like antagonist and a plot similar to "The Ring". See more »
At the end of the movie, the Colonel (the military officer in charge of the task force that is investigating the alien invasion through out the movie) refers to President Bush in his phone call when the movie takes place in 2010 (two years after Bush's last term in office). See more »
quirky and interesting, though not always compelling
This is an odd little movie. Some nebbishy teacher sews a recreation of a suit from a short-lived superhero show, and find himself dealing with aliens. The movie doesn't make a lot of sense, unless it's all this guy's fantasy, and the movie doesn't really play much with that possibility, instead just letting it all unspool. I like some sort of rationale for what happens in a film, but the audience is expected to just accept that all of this happens for no good reason at all. The silliness of the aliens and a few other things give it the quality of a kid's movie, but even kids movies generally make some attempt to explain stuff.
There are some cool things in this movie. The dead-on recreations of a cheesy Japanese TV show, the relationship between the low-key teacher and the disabled child, the final amusing superhero battle, but I was never fully invested in the story, perhaps because it lacked rationality or perhaps because it was just kind of slow moving and a bit muddled.
Neither as weird or as good as Miike's Happiness of the Katakuris, Zebraman is acceptable but not much more.
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