Sometimes it takes a little extra effort to get through a foreign (in this case, Japanese) horror flick. Sometimes it's the case of clumsy subtitles or different slang and speech patterns; most often it's just plain old culture shock, which is what happens when you're brave enough to venture outside of the English—speaking spook flicks. Quite often when I'm watching an Asian horror film I find myself thinking, "This is boring. And weird. Weird and boring. And long," but then I feel a little bit guilty; that maybe it's ME who's not paying enough attention or is too firmly entrenched in the formulae that Hollywood's been feeding me for the past 30 years.
Well, sometimes it's me and sometimes it's the movie -- and in the case of Evil Dead Trap 2 (aka Shiryo no wana 2: Hideki), it's the movie. All the way. The thing starts out with the flimsiest of premises, and then runs around in circles for an hour before crashing back to earth with one of the goofiest finales I've ever seen.
Basically, EDT2 is about an overweight loner gal who works the projector in a Tokyo movie theater. Her name is Aki and she is a vicious serial killer. The other two characters are Ami, an old schoolmate of Aki's and current tabloid reporter, and Kurashi, a guy who, despite being married to a seriously loony woman, sleeps with Ami and makes the moves on Aki.
A few dead bodies pop up here and there; Aki did it and Ami gets to report on it. Kurashi keeps dropping by and flirting with our unpleasant anti-heroine, but he doesn't really matter much in the grand scheme of things. Slowly, weirdly we discover that Aki is perhaps wacko-insane because of an abortion she had a while back, but then Ami gets pregnant and decides that, hey, she's a psycho killer, too! Not at all surprisingly, Kurashi turns out to be a certifiable nut-job as well, which means that all three characters are homicidal freaks.
It all comes to a head during the MTV-ish finale, in which Aki and Ami engage in a brutal knife fight for about 15 minutes. I won't say who wins, but there sure is a lot of blood.
And that's where the "good news" comes in: If you're a hardcore horror fan and you're just looking for some gritty, grungy visuals and a few generous globs of gruesome gore, then consider Evil Dead Trap 2 worthy of a Netflix rental. Anyone looking for a cohesive plot, a scalable narrative, or a few sympathetic characters ... should move on to the comedy section.
The DVD comes in a fairly impressive widescreen format; audio is Japanese 2.0 with English subtitles. Extra features consist of photo galleries and a few trailers.