Sgt. Kabukiman, NYPD: Blatant Silliness, A Fool as a Painted Fool, Gratuitous Boobs
Believe it or not, there is a studio dedicated to crap movies.
Let me back up a bit. Years ago a little studio called Troma opened and began producing low-budget independent films. They later had a smash hit call The Toxic Avenger, which gave them a mascot for the company and some attention.
Then the collective ADHD of the public kicked in.
Now Troma films are considered cult movies, and they are always done on the cheap. Ever see the famous car explosion scenes in a Troma movie? Yup. Same scene borrowed for cost efficiency. And it came from none other than Sgt. Kabukiman N.Y.P.D.
Obviously I felt like I was walking into another session on the film industry’s toilet with this being the weird stain left by the last guy. Yet, my Sucky-Sense wasn’t going haywire.
That’s right: Sucky-Sense. F.U., Spider-Man.
Harry Griswold is a bumbling New York City Detective who has, with no doubt, the WORST luck of any human being on the planet. Unbeknownst to Harry, the Kabuki actor he is about to see in a performance is backstage partaking in a ritual to bring about the spirit of Kabukiman to combat the encroaching evil.
During the show the head benefactor, billionare Reginald Stewart, gets up and leaves. Just as he exits a group of thugs begin to shoot up the theater. The old Kabuki actor is gunned down, taking Harry to the floor with him. He transfers the spirit of Kabukiman to Harry and dies.
Harry begins to undergo strange changes, such as spontaneously having his pants replaced by a kimono and his face seeming to grow make-up. The old man’s granddaughter, Lotus, aggressively forces her help on Harry so that he may harness his Kabukiman powers before the evil arrives.
Oh, I’m not done.
OF COURSE, Stewart is the bad guy. He and his flunkies are trying to enact an ancient ritual to give him ultimate power, and only Kabukiman can stop him.
After a few major blunders, Harry agrees to Lotus’s help and fights to rid the streets of New York of crime and corruption. When Lotus is kidnapped by Stewart, Kabukiman uses her monkey to help find her and defeat Reginald Stewart.
The final battle takes place in a shipyard. Stewart is able to perform enough of the ritual to be transformed into an inhuman beast who is Kabukiman’s match. But, before the final piece of the ritual can take place, Kabukiman is able to distract Stewart from his goal. Stewart is destroyed, and Harry is reinstated to the police department.
The movie is that brief, aside from a lot of shenanigans and blunders on Harry’s part. In one scene he tries to “conjure” Kabukiman on the fly and is turned into a clown.
The goons are complete idiots, often calling each other “weenies” and trying to carry out their schemes in the most ridiculous ways possible. One in particular wears a long blonde wig and carries himself as a transgender.
VERDICT: Believe it or not, it’s worth a look.
Okay, bear with me. The movie is s**t, don’t get me wrong. But, it’s a Troma film. This makes it a different animal than your basic s**t movie. It’s SUPPOSED to be crappy. The dialogue is cheap and puts forth the basic stereotype of each character. Harry is the lead and the every-man, so he’s laid back but clumsy. Stewart is the scheming billionaire villain, so he wrings his hands and acts all creepy and slimy. Lotus is the mysterious Japanese girl, so she acts all…mysterious.
Yeah, ran out of adjectives.
This movie is spoof on super-hero movies, so there are nods to a good many of them (Kabukiman flies like Superman, and the scene changes are reminiscent of the old Batman series). It makes no bones and has no confusion about what it is: A live-action cartoon.
I was surprised at the gratuitous boobie-shots in the flick, as it carries a PG-13 rating. It also has a lot of gore, as is expected of any Troma fllm.
If you like cheap humor and self-representation, check into it. It’s silly, stupid, and devoid of any purpose in the industry other than to make drunks and meat-heads laugh. If you’re looking for an awe-inspiring epic that makes your heart race and your sense of justice swell in your chest…yeah, you picked the wrong movie.