by Chris MaGee
Hair played a huge part in the J-Horror boom earlier this decade. Think about it. It seemed like every ghost had long, stringy black hair falling over their faces from Sadako in Hideo Nakata's "Ringu" to the female ghosts in Takashi Shimizu's "Ju-On". Actually I remember speaking to a Japanese friend of mine who informed me that long hair falling over a woman's face and no feet are common attributes of Japanese ghosts in the same way as someone under a white sheet is to us Westerners. Still it was overdone, so much so that it was lampooned in Sion Sono's 2007 film "Exte (Hair Extensions)", but now author, screenwriter and Japanese pop culture guru Jun Miura (above right) and "The Sinking of Japan" director Shinji Higuchi are taking scary hair one big step further with their upcoming kajiu monster movie spoof "Daikaiju Gehara". Yes, you heard that right, a kaiju movie, but this time instead of the giant monster being covered in scales it will be covered in long, stringy black hair!
Airing on NHK in Japan on February 24th at 12:10 a.m. "Daikaiju Gehara" tells the story of a mysterious monster that appears of the coast of Japan. Making it's way inland it does what any self-respecting giant monster does, it wreaks havoc and destruction, but once that's taken care of it makes a beeline for the mountains. What's it looking for up there? It's up to a ragtag group of survivors lead by journalist Hideo Hagiwara (Ken Osawa) and Dr. Murakami (Shiro Sano) to follow the monster and find out.
So how did they come up with the concept of Gehara, a monster that looks like a Japanese ghost girl on some pretty ferocious steroids? Well, according the the movie's official site Miura started up a contest in April of 2008 that asks entrants to submit their design for the ultimate kaiju monster and the grand prize went to this hairy beasty.
With Higuchi on board to helm the project expect a lot of things to blow up and get smashed just like in his utterly over the top "The Sinking of Japan"... and if I had to put money on it I'd say that someone is going to snatch this one up for a North American DVD release.
Thanks to Todd Brown at Twitch for the news of this one.