DVD Death Kappa

DVD Death Kappa
DVD Death Kappa

Run time: 90 min
Rating: 4.4
Genres: Action | Sci-Fi
Director: Tomo’o Haraguchi
Writers: Masakazu Migita
Stars: Daniel Aguilar Gutiérrez, Matt Alt, Hideaki Anno
The kappa, in Japanese folklore, are water goblins that are closely associated with a certain town in the country. Unfortunately, the area is also home to a militant splinter group of researchers dedicated to developing amphibious super soldiers based on the kappa of legends. When their experiment’s result in murder by some escapees, the appearance of an actual kappa, and the triggering of an atomic bomb, the consequences are of epic proportions. Written by Anonymous
Country: Japan, USA
Release Date: 27 November 2010 (Japan)


  1. Wow. I love Godzilla movies. Yes even sometimes the bad ones. But this…….wow. I can't help but wonder if this was supposed to be a parody of Kaiju films. If so, they might have listed that in the summary/description. Perhaps I could have watched it at the proper moment, in the proper mood, with the proper expectations.

    They make no attempt to hide the strings, the rubber suits, or the miniature models. The scene with the reporter comes to mind (if you dare to watch it, you'll know what I mean). The acting………..is bad. SOOOOOO bad. I only paid $12 for the blu-ray, and honestly I wouldn't pay a dollar for this.

    Maybe I might watch this one day for fun with friends, if we're drunk enough. Personally, I would classify/describe this movie as a bad parody making fun of Godzilla (and other kaiju) films, and it is NOT to be taken seriously.

  2. Sometimes I wonder just how they manage to sell films like this to potential producers; whether they simply say 'It's about a Kappa that destroys stuff' and hope they don't ask for any further details, or if they have to ask them sit down and brace themselves whilst they explain exactly what they want this film to do. At least here they sold it to the right people; the producers who gave us 'Tokyo Gore Police' and 'Machine Girl' are on board, and that for me automatically seals the deal, I'm on board for the ride too. And this is one hell of a ride; this is the sort of B-Movie that makes Troma look like it's being serious; that harks back to Japan's glory days of Godzilla, mocking it as it proceeds. It's completely self aware and everything from the effects work to the choreography of the fights has been done to exemplify that, finding the humour in it all. They've succeeded in making this film thoroughly dreadful, cheapening everything to the point of no return and in exchange they've delivered upon one of the most hilarious films I've seen.

    When a pop star realises she hasn't got any talent, she resolves to travel back home to her grandparents so as to look after them like they looked after her as a teenager. Unfortunately their reunion is cut short when a group of speeding teens run over her granny and drive off (don't worry, Kappa gets revenge for her); her final words? "Protect Kappa." Cut to our mythical creatures specialist and we learn that a Kappa is a wrestling, cucumber loving, goblin/turtle who lives in lakes. And he just happens to love dancing to our protagonists brand of pop, much to the delight of our cute but completely insane scientist. Using her music against her to attempt to capture the Kappa for her research, first undergone by her now deceased grandfather, she sets to work fusing Kappa DNA with humans to create amphibious super soldiers. Well naturally this plan screws up so she detonates a nuclear warhead that must have misfired as all it did was create a monster that springs up to attack Tokyo Godzilla style. Who will save the country? Why that giant Kappa will of course!

    Bear in mind that this is a film clocking in at less than 80 minutes and you'll see just how tight the pacing is here. It doesn't spend any longer than the absolute minimum explaining itself so it can get on with the parody, firing pun after pun within this joke of a film. The film is unquestionably divided between the two sections; the opening forty minutes a mini-film that alludes to the more modern brand of Japanese insanity; the 'Machine Girl,' 'Yakuza Weapon' and 'Robo-Geisha' style of insensibility full of obvious slapstick and oddball humour, which you'll either love or hate. It isn't until the second half of the film – or perhaps it would be more apt to call this the 'second film' – that the Godzilla parody gets under way, complete with super-lasers and the crackpot military cocking their heads back and laughing in the control room, plotting and scheming whilst the monster gets to business with wanton destruction. The fact that there are two sides will automatically make this a hard sell, the second half perhaps hitting it's mark more effectively due to the serious nature of the originals (albeit that's not how they're viewed now), but ultimately requiring prerequisite knowledge of two undeniably linked styles separated by time.

    Usually when faced with a budget directors have to be a little clever; they use darkness and the shadows to disguise sub-par work, they leave as much as possible to the audience's imagination, using the power of suggestion to get into the audiences mind. Consider that at one point our Kappa and his monstrous foe start playing a game of volleyball; that the vehicles used are little more than remote controlled children's toys and you'll note that this director doesn't exactly follow this line of thought. Neither does he seem to like the idea of CGI, using rubber suits in a perfect homage to the flicks of the 70s – if it wasn't around 40 years ago, it won't be in this film. This is a flick that has so far been very poorly received and this seems to be on the fault of the audience; this isn't just a parody of the classics but destined to be a cult classic in its own right. It's cheap, nonsensical, batshit insane, and this is precisely why you should love it. Bring on the Blu-Ray!

    Originally published for http://liferthemoviecorner.blogspot.com/

    Note: Usually I don't post my work here, preferring the blog format, but since there seems to be a lack of a decent review here I thought I'd help fill the void. A lot have commented that this is a bad film. It is. It's dreadful, and intentionally so, and that's what makes it amusing. Many will hate it, but if you're a fan of B-Movies "so bad they're good" then this is an absolute must.

  3. I am a fan of even the lowliest of Kaiju movies…if you build a monster, I will come.

    But this is just the worst. It is a non-stop goof-fest of silly songs, cutely dancing goblins that look like they were invented for a McDonald's commercial and a nemesis monster that can't even seem to move properly. Not even the 90s Mothra movies were this childish, and I swear that some of the horrible American voice-overs are the same actors from those films, hamming it up one more time at our expense.

    At times the movie tries to seem like a spoof of Kaiju movies, but it can't even do that properly. The guys at MSTK3000 need to come back for this one, if only because I need to get a laugh or something out of having watched it. Thanks for reading. I will now go cut out my eyes, douse them in gasoline and set them on fire.

  4. For me it all began with a simple tweet of the movie critic Harry Knowles I got to read. He was watching, with his nephew I think, the Blu-Ray of DEATH KAPPA and writing in twitter that they were amazed (and that the kid was like "I can do that in my backyard" regarding some scenes of the movie!). Later I read in a Fangoria magazine that the director of "Kappa" wanted to make with it the TEAM America of Japanese monster movies! So I saw the trailer (which is quite awesome), realized it has the same producers of TOKYO GORE POLICE and THE MACHINE GIRL and added it to my list of must-wanted movies.

    I just received the Blu-Ray last Thursday and on Friday night I finally got immerse in the world of the Kappas (it was the very last movie I saw in 2011!). The movie was everything I hoped for and then some. I mean, it's indeed a classic monster picture but there are certain elements that I didn't expect and that are pretty darn ridiculous, in the good and hilarious way! First of all, the look of the main character (a kappa – not *really* a monster but a "creature of legend", as we are told. A creature that actually knows sumo!) is likely the most bizarre you'll see in a 2010 picture! The Kappa is as ugly as f***, and once you have it dancing to some song for children, well you just have some truly WTF moment.

    The movie is some sort of a spectacle of the "do it as you can" kind of filmmaking. I don't know if that makes any sense, but what I'm trying to say is that DEATH KAPPA is the kind of movie that doesn't give a s***. More than to TEAM America (that is a masterpiece of a movie with scale models), it is closer to SOUTH PARK. Remember those *real* explosions mixed with the animation from that TV show? Well, here we have that kind of thing with, for instance, images of buildings being destroyed. Plus, we have visible wires and all that kind of things. Certainly some will get it and go for it (as I did) and some will not at all, just like some will not forgive the completely over-the-top acting or just the entire first part of the movie (certainly the part without any of the Godzilla-like material).

    And that first part of the movie delivers some WTF moments (like the one I mentioned) but it is mostly just something forgettable. We are here for the monster action and believe me, it is quite fun. The very last part, the monster fight, is quite the s***. Hell, we have the kappa (in its gigantic monster form, known as death kappa) showing us some fighting movements with a nunchaku-like weapon! It is just some very cool Japanese stuff.

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