Saturday, 7 March 2015



Say what you like about Ninja Apocalypse, but you have to admit at the very least it does have ninjas and it does have an apocalypse: a full-on nuclear annihilation within the first minute of the film. It also has fraternal conflict, hot chicks, throwing stars, zombies, shape-shifters, jealousy, lunkheads, levitation, terrible CGI and such awesomely idiotic dialogue you can't believe the screenwriter cashed the cheque with a straight face, so you won't be shortchanged in the wild incident department. It's almost a pity, though scarcely a huge surprise, that the film isn't very good.

Years after the Bomb went off, California's scattered communities have apparently adopted the ancient Ninja code of honour. Apparently tired of the disparate clans fighting each other, Grand Master Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa calls the various leaders together for a peace summit in a 100-storey bunker. But he's assassinated, apparently by Cage, Leader of the Lost Clan (Christian Oliver), who immediately protests his innocence even though everyone saw him do it. Every other clan sets out to wipe out our heroes - but who is the real mystery villain? And what unspeakable horrors are waiting for the Lost Clan leaders on the 100th floor?

Everyone's got superpowers, whether it's psychokinesis, lightning bolts or creating weapons out of thin air, but only for limited periods as they need to recharge themselves. Which makes it particularly annoying when they mainly waste those powers beating each other up rather than the legions of other, more colourful ninjas. (Let's ignore the fact that the ability to movie objects through mind power or conjure energy bolts out of the air doesn't make you a ninja, it makes you a sorceror.) This isn't just twaddle, it's badly acted and badly written twaddle with poor CGI blood spurts: obviously any movie calling itself Ninja Apocalypse is hardly an intellectual piece, but there's no dishonour in aiming high and missing. It's when you aim low and still miss that you've got problems. Still, some of the fighting is agreeably crunchy and it's very silly, and it's over and done in 80 minutes or so. It's not abysmal, being not being abysmal really isn't enough.


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