May 28, 2011

Executive Koala

When I look back at my life and ponder upon my larger regrets, never would I propose that I deserve this form of punishment. Naturally, cinema is one of my greatest passions, second only to sodomy. What cruel mistress would be foul enough in her arts to subject me to comeuppance in the form of cancerous filmmaking? Enter the films of Minoru Kawasaki, a Japanese director who panders around the very essence of Japanese culture perceived by Westerners - Namely, really cutesy "kawaii" plush furries and starry-eyed kaiju homages with an IV-drip of anime inspired machinations. Jumping in head-first, I honestly didn't want to know what a film starring a larger Japanese man in a Koala mask would entertain me with - the word entertain used very loosely. It just so happens that Executive Koala goes the way of dark comedy as we straggle behind a divorced salarykoala who begins to have bizarre flashbacks and memory lapses which lead him to conclude he is a sleepwalking murderer. Following the disappearance of his wife some odd years ago and now his girlfriend's bloody corpse, a detective trails behind Tamura, koala, and feebly attempts to find incriminating evidence. All the while Tamura creeps closer to cementing in a new, mysterious Korean client for his business firm. 

Making a film like Executive Koala would be relatively simple, had you the willpower to capture motion video of less-than-savvy acting abilities and the awful motor-skills of a hybrid man-marsupial. It takes a true hack to twist the absurd into the unwatchable. Certain Japanese films, as tawdry as the may be, have the elements of train-wreck mixed with such unclassifiable material that it literally is damn near impossible to peel your eyes from the screen. Executive Koala certainly does not have this effect. Personally, I found myself in a room, wanting to be distracted by anything - a fly buzzing about the room, a phone call from someone I didn't want to talk with, even the mad rumblings of displeased bowels would have been welcome as opposed to forcing myself to be transfixed on what might be the worst film I have ever sat through, and to be honest, if I had known Executive Koala would end the way it did, I might have turned it off just to shatter the disc, to jab it straight into the jugular of the one who gave it to me. Minoru Kawasaki has created films similar to this, such as Calamari Wrestler and Crab Goalkeeper, in which he cuts and pastes a hybrid creature "seamlessly" into a world compromised of humanity. This makes for a silly marketing ploy to sell tickets. Executive Koala opens with a crudely animated introduction highlighting the cast of characters with a cheery song. Once the murder mystery actually takes place, you are immediately evidenced guilt as to Tamura being the killer. Certain kill scenes are composed of the victim facing a corner of the room while Tamura, facing the camera in grotesque close-up, strafes past the camera with inconsistently glowing eyes, obviously the results of a buggy animatronic koala head or the unmentioned fact that he is a cyborg. Do I even need to mention Tamura's inconceivable ability to teleport across the room on a whim? Never mind reality, Executive Koala is too insipid to waste your time defending it.

Few if any scenes within Executive Koala stand with purpose. Much of the runtime is dedicated to proving that Tamura is a skilled worker with an excellent ethic, yet demonizes his sanity and memory loss with instances of murder, only for the murders to have not actually taken place. Coincidentally a film is being shot of the same condition but it is never mentioned again after this initial scene. After the detective visits Tamura's village of birth, Executive Koala infuriates further with an amateur sing-and-dance number that includes getting final judgment from a fiery deity that I can only assume to be a dark lord. Executive Koala is many things - embarrassing, boring, entirely without charm - not to mention whenever a character is involved in physical combat, Minoru Kawasaki edits the character out and replaces it with a stuffed mannequin to get thrown and twisted to hearts content. Quirky and eccentric, somewhat, but that doesn't cover up the fact that Executive Koala is rookie garbage. No facet can be found enjoyable within the film and certainly not the physically harmful ending in which, after a dastardly cover-up, Tamura gets the girl, the detective forgets the crimes altogether, and they all stare at the sun in an equally disgusting pose - filled with inspiration and direction. I hate Executive Koala and so should you. If not for the incredibly stupid lack of "Koreagraphy" during the final fight than for the rest of the film, compromised of digital piss and shit, the likes of which entice me to punch my eyes out with a thin, blunt object.



jervaise brooke hamster said...

mAQ, its great to hear that your greatest passion is shoving your knob up the bums of gorgeous sexy young girls, fabulous my old mate, fabulous. By the way, Executive Koala is better by itself than everything that has ever been produced by the (so-called) British film industry put together over the last 122 years since the invention of the cinematograph circa 1889.

The Diary of a Milkman said...

That's a shame. I'll probably still check this out, as I think my curiosity will eventually take over, but...damn.

Looking forward to your review of The Calamari Wrestler.

Anonymous said...

In DVD Delerium 4 Nathanial Thompson said he thought Executive Koala was quite an interesting cult item that was worth seeking out.

Soiled Sinema said...

Then it seems obvious that poor Nathanial is either a masochist or autistic ... or both. If you're curious, watch the trailer. But even the trailer doesn't do the actual film justice on scale to how horrendous it truly is. Just because it is either Japanese or unconventional doesn't mean it's worth checking out.


jervaise brooke hamster said...

But one thing that does make it worth checking out is that it isn`t British. Always remember ANY film is always worth watching if it isn`t British made.