6.5/10
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15 user 18 critic

Zeiram (1991)

Zeiramu (original title)
Bounty hunters Iria and Bob travel to Earth to capture an escaped bio-engineered fighting machine called Zeiramu.

Director:

Keita Amemiya

Writers:

Keita Amemiya, Steve Kramer (English version) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Credited cast:
Yûko Moriyama Yûko Moriyama ... Iria
Kunihiro Ida ... Teppei
Yukijirô Hotaru Yukijirô Hotaru ... Kamiya
Masakazu Handa Masakazu Handa ... Bob (voice)
Mizuho Yoshida Mizuho Yoshida ... Zeiramu
Yukitomo Tochino Yukitomo Tochino ... Murata
Riko Kurenai Riko Kurenai ... Momonga no Mama
Naomi Enami Naomi Enami ... Electronic Store Manager
Mayumi Aguni Mayumi Aguni ... Liliput
Masakazu Katsura Masakazu Katsura ... Passerby
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Robert Axelrod ... Kamiya (voice)
Steve Bulen ... Teppei (voice)
Juliana Donald ... Bartender (voice)
Steve Kramer ... Murata (voice)
Edie Mirman ... Iria (voice)
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Storyline

Teppei and Kamiya, two average joes working in the electronic services industry, stumble upon the intergalactic bounty-hunter Ilia, and her partner, the artificial intelligence named Bob. Both men are accidentally transported to the Zone, a virtual reality in which Bob has trapped Ilia's latest prey, a biological weapon named Zeram. The Earth natives must both survive the experience and help Ilia capture Zeram before the Zone disappears around them. Written by Chris Holland <stomptokyo@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Sci-Fi that Reaches Out and Grabs You!


Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese

Release Date:

May 1994 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Zeiram See more »

Filming Locations:

Mikasa, Hokkaido, Japan

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
See full technical specs »
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User Reviews

Another great sci-fi premise with outstanding visuals...but that is barely enough to salvage this anemic picture.
5 June 1999 | by ChoiBabySee all my reviews

In the stylized tradition of 1950s Japanese monster movies and the current, popular trendy pastiche of modern Anime comes a fantastic futuristic adventure. Zeram is basically an enormous giant renegade space alien who has done quite a lot of damage aboard on other planets.

Now, Zeram has been lured to Planet Earth, with so many victims at its disposal. The only souls who can abolish this demonic presence are a female space bounty hunter, Ilya (Yuko Moriyama), from Planet Mays, and her highly intelligent albeit obstinate computer, Bob. The two have planned a trap for Zeram, and the showdown will take place in a take-no-prisoners setting inside "The Zone," a virtual reality type environment that is uninhabited, and totally unreal...

The odds are in favor of Zeram, and to make matters a lot more unbearable, two goofballs from an electric company (Yukihiro Hotaru and Kunihiko Ida), have managed to slip by... One of these employees is a Leslie Cheung lookalike. Anyway, Ilya feels very uncomfortable at this moment as the two bumbling clowns serve as the most inconvenient supplements right now...

The battlefield is set. Ilya is armed with a cool warp machine that can travel both dimensions, from the Zone to the Real World. She has a powerful space bazooka, body armor, an electric shield for protection, and plenty of agile moves to knock Zeram off into oblivion! Zeram however has: Mutant dwarves, a bulletproof armor, lasers, servants, and a miniature face within its head that serves as his primary weapon for mass destruction. He eats organic matter, and creates his own army of deformed freaks! Zeram is a grotesque creature, resembling that of a disfigured statue. Every time Zeram is apparently destroyed...he keeps regenerating, looking more disgusting every time... This creature can morph from a slow-moving juggernaut...to a slick moving spider... Zeram and Ilya are at the final match tonight...with the fate of the world hanging in the balance...

ZERAM (The film's original Japanese title is ZEIRAMU.) is an OK flick. Some decorative special effects, machinery, and lots of explosions aggrandize the film. The film is orchestrated with dazzling FX and imagery. The stop motion effects are remarkable as well. Still, despite the flamboyant technology and some rather impressive effects of its kind, the film is unfortunately waived thanks to a lack of invention and a excruciatingly plodding pace. The comedy in this film is extremely lame as well. The acute action and good martial arts skills in this movie are a plus. The gory introduction with people being literally blown away also serves as among the best highlights in this average sci-fi journey.

Even though the flashy visuals are accompanied throughout most of this movie, the film is still, amazingly lifeless and boring. ZERAM takes too long to begin picking up the pace, and although the film runs for only 90 minutes long, the movie drags so consistently that it feels like the feature is going on forever. A fastidious misfire, due to its tepid direction which is short on vigor. Also, by the end, we are very much unclear about the origin of Zeram...and we no longer give either...

This movie's uneven pace is its biggest liability. If that was not there, this movie would have been very much enjoyable and entertaining, assisted with some raw comedy. Still, there's an acceptable premise, but the movie moves way too slowly! Lighting effects, tangible technological materials, and a good musical score orchestrated just BARELY save ZERAM from sinking under its own weight...

RATING: ** out of ****.


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