Mutant Girls Squad – Japan, 2010

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Mutant Girls Squad is a 2010 Japanese science fiction action horror feature film directed by Noboru Iguchi, Yoshihiro Nishimura and Tak Sakaguchi, from a screenplay by Iguchi and Jun Tsugita. It stars Yumi Sugimoto, Yuko Takayama, Suzuka Morita, Naoto Takenaka, Chiharu Kawa.

The film is about Rin, a sixteen-year-old mutant girl who meets a gang of rebel mutants who aim to take revenge on humans for persecuting their race. The original title, 戦闘少女 血の鉄仮面伝説, or Sentō Shōjo: Chi no Tekkamen Densetsu, literally translates as “Fighting Girls: Legend of the Blood of the Iron Mask”.

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Rin (Yumi Sugimoto), a young high school student, is an unassuming and awkward girl who is bullied at school. One day, while being bullied, she feels a sharp pain in her hand. Later, Rin learns that she is a descendant of the ancient Hiruko clan, whose members are mutants gifted with superpowers. No sooner does she learns of this, than her home is raided by anti-Hiruko soldiers. Rin’s parents are killed and Rin barely escapes with her life.

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After killing an entire shopping district out of misunderstanding and grief-fueled rage, Rin meets Rei (Yuko Takayama), another mutant. Rei introduces Rin to a small rag-tag group of mutant rebels led by a transvestite samurai named Kisaragi (Tak Sakaguchi), who is bent on restoring the Hiruko clan’s place in the world. Under the instruction of Kisaragi and Rei, Rin begins training, wearing an iron mask until she can control her powers…

Reviews:

“The relatively condensed ninety minute running time is a blessing, and one that forces each director to focus they talent, rather than expand upon it. This works remarkably well, as each segment feels unique, and for those who have gleaned enough about their styles, it is fun to see what they do when given limitations, rather than free rein.” J Hurtado, Screen Anarchy Blu-ray review

“Flawed, uneven, and out-of-its-mind, Mutant Girls Squad is entertaining but nowhere near as good as this subgenre can be. Taken on their own, Sakaguchi’s stellar opening and Iguchi’s good follow-up are reason enough to give the movie a rental. However, Nishimura’s conclusion is so extreme that the experience spirals out of control.” Horrorfreak News

“Reveling in grindhouse conditions, the helmers execute a virtually nonstop exhibition of over-the-top violence with considerable creativity and visual flair. Scripter Jun Tsugita infuses the mayhem with a wealth of zingy lines, and the attractive central thesping trio of Sugimoto, Takayama and Morita credibly negotiate the dialogue and show plenty of zest while lopping the limbs off all comers.” Richard Kuipers, Variety

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“The film features ridiculous, completely over the top and borderline offensive content that may not be for everybody. There is a lot of blood spilled in the movie… a lot. There are also a plethora of sexual innuendos and sexual jokes that may come across kind of imbecile, but hilarious nonetheless…” Ben Umstead, Screen Anarchy

Cast and characters:

  • Yumi Sugimoto as Rin
  • Yuko Takayama as Rei
  • Suzuka Morita as Yoshie
  • Kanji Tsuda as Rin’s father
  • Maiko Ito as Sayuri, Rin’s mother
  • Tak Sakaguchi as Kisaragi
  • Asami Sugiura as Female samurai with eyepatch
  • Kentarō Shimazu as Nonagase
  • Naoto Takenaka as Defence Minister Koshimizu Hiroaki
  • Miyu Wagawa as Tadokoro Mina
  • Rie Hayasaka as Sumire
  • Naoi Nagano as Chiako
  • Cay Izumi as Sachie
  • Maki Mizui as Astro-mutant

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