Ninjas vs Monsters (2013)
Directed by: Justin Timpane
Written by: Daniel Ross, Justin Timpane, Kelly Timpane, Thomas Chillemi
Starring: Carla Okouchi, Cory Okouchi, Dan Guy, Daniel Ross, Devon Brookshire, Jasmine Guillermo, Jay Saunders, P.J. Megaw
NINJAS VS MONSTERS (2013)
Directed by Justin Timpane
A group of ninjas must team up with another clan to fight the powerful Dracula who has called upon the old monsters – The Mummy, Wolfman, Frankenstein and a coven of witches – to wipe out the ninjas for good and bring hell upon Earth.
The third in the Ninjas series of films, NINJAS VS MONSTERS is a wise-cracking, ass-kicking, gun-toting action flick that never takes itself too seriously. Having never seen the previous two films, Ninjas vs Zombies and Ninjas vs Vampires, I was unsure whether I’d be able to follow the continuing story but the film is accessible for both newbies and fans of the movie series with its standalone plot. Though there are references to previous events, the script and narrative covers these aspects well enough for the viewer to understand and enjoy this movie as if it was a single film.
The group of ninjas from the previous films, including Cole, Kyle, Aaron, Randell, Eric and Alex, team up with Masero and Step’s talented clan of ninjas in a bid to defeat the classic monsters who seek to strike fear into humans once again after their names have fallen from grace thanks to soppy literature and movies aimed at teenagers and women. NINJAS VS MONSTERS isn’t shy about poking fun at the Twilight franchise and also lovingly references a few good iconic movies too including Aliens.
Though NINJAS VS MONSTERS has quite a large set of characters, particularly of the ninja variety, each is established in their own right with their own personalities to differentiate them. Eric and Randell are brothers, the former of whom is skilled in swordplay particularly with a katana, whilst Randell is a magic whizz. Cole is heartbroken over the loss of his wife who’s revealed to be a vampire and has joined forces with Dracula. Aaron is named as the ’emo’ ninja who’s handy with sticks and tonfa, whilst Alex uses her special psychic skills to help the team. Finally, Kyle is the film’s narrator and the outspoken joker who enjoys to fill his enemies full of lead. Yes, guns and ninjas don’t normally go together, but in this film, and with the character of Kyle in particular, it just works. The film also addresses this aspect with much humour, a cheeky, self-aware banter that you’d have with friends and had me giggling from the start of the film. As I mentioned previously, this film is quite light-hearted amidst the fight scenes and bloodshed.
There’s plenty to enjoy with NINJAS VS MONSTERS even as a budget movie. The special FX are decent as is the character make-up, particularly of the Wolfman. The film doesn’t shy away from its B-movie vibe, instead embracing it and making something thoroughly entertaining for the audience and was no doubt fun to make. The cast can obviously handle themselves with their display of acrobatics during the film, even if the fight scenes could have been choreographed and shot a little better to make a deadlier impression, though the current format fits in with its light-hearted tone.
The UK Blu-Ray of NINJAS VS MONSTERS is packed with extras including an entertaining audition tape of the actors who were cast as the monsters, Masero, Step and the other ninjas, alternate ending(s), deleted scenes, a music video and more. The Blu-Ray also contains the full feature length film of NINJAS VS VAMPIRES, the predecessor to this movie and the second in the series, so essentially you’re getting two films for the price of one. I look forward to checking that out one day and leaving a review here on HCF.
Fun-filled action with ninjas and classic horror monsters? What’s not to enjoy?!