Next up on A Timely Blogathon, hosted by myself and Movierob, is this newest review from Wendell of Dell On Movies. Wendell is the king of blogathons, so I was so happy he joined in on this one! Wendell chose to review Gun Woman (2014) – a film I’m now quite interested in, despite… well, read on! Thanks Wendell for participating!
A little while back one of the bloggers I frequently check out, Anna at Film Grimoire, announced plans to host a blogathon with the help of another blogger I’ve recently started checking out, Rob of Movierob. It’s called A Timely Blogathon. Fittingly, it’s dedicated to movies shorter than ninety minutes. I see plenty of those, so obviously, I had to take part. Please swing by both of their places to check out other entries in their joint venture. Not before you finish reading my entry, of course.
There are two times when I’m specifically in search of a movie that runs for such a short period of time. Most frequently that’s late at night, after everyone else in the Dell household is fast asleep (or is supposed to be). The other is early in the morning before they get up. Needless to say, this has led me down some pretty strange corridors of the cinematic universe. Now that I have Netflix at my disposal, it seems each place I wind up on these journeys is stranger than the last. The movie I’m here to discuss, Gun Woman, is no exception. It clocks in at a brisk eighty-six minutes and is one of those movies that makes you ask yourself two questions, at least half a dozen times each. The first is “What the hell am I watching?” The other, “Why am I watching this?” Still, you can’t make yourself turn the damn thing off.
The basic plot is actually pretty straightforward. A guy’s wife is killed by some lunatic and he sets out to get revenge. As the old saying goes, the devil is in the details. How he plans to get that revenge is so bizarre it can only make sense within the confines of this particular movie. Think of the quintessential revenge franchise, Death Wish. If you’ve seen any of them, you know they’re pretty over the top. They have nothing on Gun Woman.
The guy out for vengeance is only known as Mastermind. Wait. Let’s back up a second. Gotta set it up properly, ya know. By the way, I’ll try not to give it all away, but yeah…
We open up as these sorts of movies often do, on a woman in the shower. Don’t worry about who she is because she gets a bullet through the back of her head before we even see her face. The guy that shoots her, Assassin (Matthew Floyd Miller), hops in a car with Driver (Dean Simone), and away they go. It’s clear the writers wracked their brains coming with names for these characters. Anyhoo, a conversation strikes up about a mysterious guy named Mastermind (Kairi Narita) and his legendary tale of revenge. His wife, I’m assuming she was named Wife, was murdered by a guy named…or known as Hamazaki’s Son (Noriaki Kamata). Well, that’s a partial name, at least. Hamazaki was a incredibly rich nutjob who was murdered and left his fortune to his son who is a thousand times worse. The son is into torturing, raping, and murdering women. The order in which he does those things to a poor girl varies. He’s such a deviant that in his spare time he attends an exclusive club where he gets to have his way with chicks who are already dead. Yup, that’s what I said.
What the hell am I watching?
Lucky for us viewers, Mastermind is no ordinary Joe. He happens to be a brilliant doctor. By the way, during that whole wife-killing scene, Mastermind himself is maimed, but manages to survive. His plan for revenge is to take a girl, train her to be a killer and send her after Hamazaki’s son. Where does he get this girl? He buys one, duh. Her name is Mayumi (Asami, only credited with a singular name). How about that? She has a real fucking name. Since she’s a suicidal meth addict, he’s gotta clean her up. The makes the first hour or so of our movie an extended training montage. Believe me, it’s far more interesting, and brutal, than it sounds. After weaning her off drugs, he gets some dude to train her in hand-to-hand combat, then puts a gun in her hand and makes her an expert marksman and finally lets her in on his grand scheme.
Mind you, he’s basically enslaved this chick, having beat the crap out of her a number of times, gotten someone else to beat the crap out of her, and threatened her life on numerous occasions. Not that that last one is terribly effective. Suicidal, remember? Mastermind also brings in some other chick to shoot at her and eventually kills the woman right in front of her. Fun guy. He keeps Mayumi naked for quite some time. When he does put clothes on her, he apparently bought her a number of outfits to rock during training, but none of them include a bra. I’m not sure if that counts as torture or a little slice of heaven. Ladies, let me know on that. Never mind. In any case, it makes you wonder why she doesn’t take him out when she gets good. Well, she tries. Big fight scene. Blood every damn where. She straddles him and is just about to kill him…and…you guessed it…they start having sex.
Why the hell am I watching this?
Since this train is still wrecking, I can’t look away. Dammit, I hope my kids or Mrs. Dell don’t wake up during these last twenty/twenty-five minutes. I think their perception of me will forever be damaged if they do. I really should cut this off, but I can’t.
Let’s move on.
Now that we’ve witnessed the craziest display of Stockholm Syndrome of all-time we’ve got to be prepared for what’s next, right? No, not really. I’ll start with this: The plan Mayumi is to carry out involves her smuggling the magazine of a handgun in her vagina…and that’s the least intrusive place she’s hiding something.
Okay, I gotta back up again.
Remember when I said Mastermind kills another woman right in front of Mayumi? He does so by slicing open the area above her left breast and the right side of her abdomen and watches her bleed to death. His point is that this process will take twenty-two minutes. This is very important information for Mayumi because he is going to perform surgery on her where he will hide the two main parts of a gun in those very same spots on her body. He will then give her something that will make her appear to be dead, and get her into the facility where Hamazaki goes to fool around with corpses. When Mayumi wakes up she is to rip out her stitches to dig out the two parts of the gun, assemble it, snatch the mag from her snatch, and kill everybody in the place, Hamazaki included. Yup, it all has to be done in twenty-two minutes. When she’s done, she’ll come outside where some random dude will be waiting to give her a blood transfusion on the spot. She can then go on her merry way. Sounds foolproof to me. And you were wondering why they called him Mastermind,
What the hell am I watching?
I know I’ve told you lots about this movie. Believe it, or not, I still don’t think you quite understand the level of nuttiness attained by this movie. Every few minutes throughout the eighty-six you spend watching it, something happens you just weren’t quite prepared for. Well, you’re kinda prepared now that you’ve read this, but there are still some surprises. When most of them happen, you’ll do what I do. You’ll shake your head and say…
Why the hell am I watching this?