|MOON OVER TAO
|Copyright 1997 Bandai Visual
| Reviewed by Max Gardner
on 'a long time ago'|
- Suikyo - Wandering monk who uses Post-It notes and a big paintbrush as weapons.
- Hayate - Samurai assigned to keep an eye on Suikyo. Killed by the Makaraga.
- Renge - Monumentally irritating girl who lives in the middle of a forest.
- Kakugyo - Evil sorcerer who looks like a chef. Smacked upside the head... ...um, chin... ...with a flying rock.
- Marien, Abira, and Kuzto - Three alien women. Marien and Kuzto die badly.
- Doromaru - Kakugyo's chief retainer, it would seem. Eaten by the Makaraga.
- Tadaoki - Lord of an estate; Suikyo's former master.
- The Makaraga - A big-ass monster that feeds on human blood. Sealed by Renge.
|If Akira Kurosawa were to direct an episode of Xena: Warrior Princess, you'd end up with "Moon Over Tao." This movie is nifty, if a bit slow-moving at first. Aliens come to 16th-century Japan in search of a lump of meteoric iron that contains the Makaraga, the ultimate biological weapon. This creature can be controlled via the Tao, a gadget that resembles a bicycle bell with prongs. Meanwhile, Suikyo and Hayate are looking for Kakugyo, an evil magician who runs a very large group of bandits and keeps the dormant Makaraga close at hand. The monster doesn't actually show up until the last half-hour of the movie, but when it does, it's cool as hell. It seems they actually had something like a budget while working on this film. The special effects are distinctly Raimi-esque. Kakugyo's bandits are particularly amusing - they exist as fodder for anyone who happens to kick more ass than they do. There are quite a few of them (A hundred strong, I'd say.), they laugh like idiots and scream at things, and all of them end up dead by the end of the movie. They also seem to have major arteries everywhere.|
|Things I Learned From This Movie:|| |
- Writing "GO" on something will make it fly.
- Blood-monsters turn brown when they're drunk.
- Monks are allowed to get drunk off their asses.
- The top of someone's skull makes a handy sake cup.
- Alien swords double as pogo sticks.
- Aliens breathe 2000 Flushes Blue.
- Bandits will laugh at anything.
- The sword is mightier than the paintbrush.
- People in feudal Japan knew the truth about meteors.
- Aliens even snort and harrumph telepathically.
- Bald people are evil.
- 5 mins - RANDOM ACT OF VIOLENCE AGAINST A ROCK!
- 19 mins - Ouch...
- 20 mins - RANDOM GRATUITOUS BREAST SHOT! (It's in Acid-Vision, but a breast shot is a breast shot.)
- 26 mins - RANDOM ACT OF VIOLENCE AGAINST ANOTHER ROCK!
- 28 mins - Heh heh, flying log.
- 29 mins - Idiot blew himself up with his own grenade.
- 47 mins - Arterial spray!
- 49 mins - The classic "spirit-fighting" scene. Short but sweet.
- 50 mins - More arterial spray.
- 51 mins - If that fight between McDowell and Shatner had been like this, "Star Trek: Generations" would've kicked ass. Maybe not.
- 53 mins - RANDOM ACT OF VIOLENCE AGAINST RENGE! (There should've been more of those.)
- 56 mins - Those two corpses just disappeared.
- 58 mins - Ouch, a big spear through the stomach.
- 61 mins - Another artery opened.
- 62 mins - Large-scale arterial spray!
- 65 mins - Monster on a string.
- 79 mins - That's a big splinter you've got there, Hayate.
- 85 mins - RANDOM ACT OF VIOLENCE AGAINST THE EXPLOSIVES GUY!
- 87 mins - All right, it's the final confrontation, and... ...oh. He threw a rock. Okay...
- 92 mins - Oh shut the hell up, kid.
- Ending Credits - "Fat Goddess?" I must've missed that...
- Tadaoki: "Do you not feel as though you were being pulled into Hell?"
- Bandit: "The boss?"
Explosives Guy: "He's staying in his house, holding that thing."
- Bandit #1: "What's the matter?"
Bandit #2: "My sword moved by itself."
- Doromaru: "I am aware of my inability to feel it."
- Suikyo: "Do you kill and eat men in your dreams?"
- Tadaoki: "That damn Suikyo. Does he like mountains or just hate this place?"
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