Nishimura is known for doing the special effects and makeup for the low-budget cult favorite The Machine Girl. Afterwards, he went on to direct Tokyo Gore Police in 2008 and later co-directed Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl. It’s no surprise that he supervised the special effects and makeup for these two movies as well.
I already discussed Tokyo Gore Police…
So let’s move on to Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl!
Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl starts off with three Frankenstein girls attacking the Vampire girl and her boy. I do love these explosive openings. At one point, the Vampire girl bites the neck of one of the Frankenstein girls and literally rips the skin off of her skull like an apple peeler! I wish this action-packed opening was a good reflection for the rest of the movie but it’s not. To be honest, the rest of the movie seems to drag up until the end – which is too bad because the idea of two of our favorite types of monsters going head to head has epic potential!
The story of Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl is narrated by the boy in the opening, Jugon Mizushima. He’s your average Japanese teen – indecisive and somewhat hapless. He’s forced into becoming the boyfriend of a domineering classmate named Keiko, whose father is also the vice principal of their school. She has a posse of girls dressed in Lolita fashion. There are two other groups that are introduced: the Ganguros and the Wrist-Cutters.
Ganguro literally translates to “Black Face” in Japanese and it’s an alternative fashion movement in Japan where women have deeply tanned skin and hair dyed blonde, orange, or white. This Ganguro group in the movie takes the tanned skin to the extreme to where they want to be black. I assume this is commentary on the ignorance of the group as a whole in Japanese society, but it’s very distracting for this American girl. The wrist-cutting group is also distracting. I assumed these two groups were somehow integral to the movie, but when I first saw them, they seriously creeped me out. That’s probably the point.
Then we meet Monami – a vampire who’s fallen in love with Jugon. And thus, a love triangle is formed! So where’s Frankenstein Girl? As it turns out, Keiko’s dad is not only the vice principal of the school, but he’s also a mad scientist who is following in the footsteps of Dr. Frankestein by trying to figure out how to bring back the dead. Except that he sucks at it because he’s too busy acting like he’s in a Kabuki play. The school nurse is his assistant and she manages to bring him a drop of Monami’s blood which has the re-animating properties he so desperately seeks. Good thing too, since Keiko accidentally throws herself off the top of the school and dies.
Keiko is brought back to life like Frankenstein’s monster with new body parts from the leaders of both Ganguro and Wrist-Cutter groups and is ready to battle Monami, the Vampire Girl, for the love of Jugon.
Compared to Tokyo Gore Police, there’s a lot of CGI blood and effects and you can tell it’s CGI. I prefer the old-school fake-looking effects because at least you know it made a real mess. Another problem I have with this movie is the excessive use of drawn-out montages. I get that’s he doing surgery and he’s bad at it! I get that she loves to dance in blood! It’s time to move on to the next scene!
I did love the music though. It added to the campiness of the movie. I also enjoyed the creativity in the end fight between Vampire Girl and Frankenstein Girl.
There’s also a quick ridiculous scene with Eihi Shiina (Audition and Tokyo Gore Police) as Monami’s mother. Another familiar face is Jiji Bu, who plays Monami’s hunchback manservant in this movie and was the hunchback coroner in TGP. If you want to see it, go ahead, add it to the list. Overall, Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl was decent. But if you don’t see it, you won’t be missing much. It’s as much a bad teen romance movie as it is a gore movie. I think I would have liked it more had I not seen TGP right before since TGP is tops!