This is a zombie movie that qualifies as horror flick, and not just a cheesy B movie.
A family is out for a drive on a holiday. The family consists of father Shigeo (Mitsuru Fukikoshi), mother Yasuko (Keiko Oginome), daughter Asami (Airi Nakajima), and kid brother Ryota (Ayato Kosugi). As they came through the curve on a mountain path, a man wearing white coat stands in their way with a gun. Shigeo steps on the brake but he runs over the man. But the man stands up and points a gun at Shigeo. Just then, a man wearing black named Jiro (Hironobu Ueda) comes out and shoots the man in white. His partner Risa (Nana Natsume) shows up, and they order the family to drive through an area blocked off from public access. As they push on, the navigation system in the car suddenly turns red, and the tire bursts. Shingo is ordered to find another car, but as he heads for a near by village, and passes by an old grave yard, he's possessed in a trans and cuts his own head off. As his blood soaks the ground, an ancient Japanese samurai in an armor rises from the ground. This samurai zombie shows up before Jiro and the family with the head of Shingo in its hand. Risa takes the wheel and runs over the samurai. Together they escape to an old abandoned village. Two police officers chasing Jiro and Risa also approaches the village. They all encounter more samurai zombies. All the players has ties with the past, and were drawn to this situation.
The team that created "Versus", Ryuhei Kitamura, and Taku Sakaguchi swaps their role on this one, with Sakaguchi directing the movie. The actors are semi A list class actors, and adds to the quality of this movie. I think I like Sakaguchi better as a director than Kitamura.
This isn't a dumb zombie flick where wobbling zombies careens through town, but samurai zombie is zombie only in that it's living dead, and more like a ghost that has a body. There're no zombies eating flesh or people turning into zombies. It's a showdown between humans and dead samurai.
The movie is intended to be a B movie, and has loads of elements that will please the B movie fans. The only negative is the low key atmosphere that seems to be the signature of Kitamura - Sakaguchi duo.
If you're a B movie horror flicks fan, this movie is for you.
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