Yokai Monsters: 100 Monsters (Japan 1968)

Rating: **
Review Date: 1/13/13
Cast: Jun Fujimaki, Miwa Takeda

Disappointing. It's as if the filmmakers set out to make a ghost story, and then forgot to put any ghosts in it. A nasty shrine magistrate bullies his way into town and tears down an obscure shrine in order to build a brothel. The shrine caretaker and the town elder lay down their lives to protect their homes, but to no avail. Finally, Okiku (lovely Miwa Takeda) offers herself to the nasty boss in return for sparing her people any more trouble, but of course he has no intention of keeping his word. Thankfully, a dashing ronin (Jun Fujimaki) rescues her in the nick of time from being raped. In the end, the evil magistrate eventually goes mad and kills himself.

Sadly, the film has nothing going for it other than the beautiful and delightfully charming Miwa Takada. A couple of monsters show up in flashbacks, and the umbrella monster makes a silly cameo with the village idiot that's played solely for laughs. At the very end there's a monster jam that features a couple dozen different creatures dancing around in slow motion, but it's out of place and fails to be interesting. A misguided attempt to make a franchise out of "Spook Warfare" (1968).