Damn, dude. This movie was gooooood.
It's weird, 'cause I've seen Battle Royale recently, which just freakin' kicks ass (I'd post a review, but I don't have enough superlatives in my vocabulary, plus I just bought a copy on ebay and I want to see it at least another time before discussing it.) Anyway, I thought that just about covers my nut for awesome, kick-ass hyperviolent Japanese action movies, plus, how good can a movie titled "Hellevator" be? Boy, was I wrong. This movie was bad-ass!
It was cool and visually stylish and unsettling, and I thought I had this thing figured out and it kept going in different and surprising directions. At first I thought it was just a quirky rip-off of Turbulence, but set on a futuristic elevator instead of a plane, where a psycho-prisoner transport goes terribly wrong. And it was, but there was a lot more two it, especially as you get to know everybody trapped on the elevator, each person having some disturbing element to their personality or backstory. I kept thinking the thing would peter out and start sucking, especially as the body count got higher and higher and there were progressively less characters, but I think it kept getting better and better, or at least staying just as good.
Granted, it was gory as all hell in places. But I can take it.
Plus, I really liked the ending, which was pretty ambiguous, without being a complete mindfuck. I mean, I figure there is two ways to approach the ending, which can be happy or sad, just depending on your interpretation. Me, I have a happy interpretation, but your mileage may vary.
There's a lot more to it, but I don't want to give away too much. Psychics and secret agents and mad scientist and a briefcase full of money and cute Japanese girls and oddles of splattered blood. The original title is "Gusher No Binds Me." I don't know what the hell that means, but that sounds pretty cool too.
I TOTALLY recommend this, to the non-faint-of-heart.
I wonder if Charlie Chu liked it.