DEMON CITY SHINJUKU
Demon City Shinjuku falls into the themes of some of the classics animes from the 1980s that were centred around the battle between the human world and demon dimensions as we get in the likes of Legend of the Overfiend (1989) and Kawajiris own Wicked City. The story here treads very similar territory to Wicked City, although one feels that Wicked Citys extraordinarily perverse element makes it the superior effort of the two.
Certainly, the artwork is cruder than the more sophisticated animation of Yoshiaki Kawajiris later work. Nevertheless, Kawajiri still conjures amazingly fantastique images. The entry into Shinjuku City is built up superbly with Kawajiri conjuring a hauntedly otherworldly atmosphere skyscrapers toppled and lying at angles against each other; the shadow of a cat that we then see gutted and torn apart; things hopping after Sayaka and then being pursued by giant spiders. It effectively suggests the sense of a normal area of city having stepped over into a borderland zone where nothing is normal any longer. There are all the typical wild and out there action scenes of Kawajiri fare Kyoya fighting a giant spider with a human head and a mouth in its stomach atop a speeding train; his being sucked down into an ordinary looking pool of water in a railway yard and attacked by multiple bat-like things that fly in formation; a slithering shadow that transforms into a red-haired woman and tries to seduce him while wrapping her tentacles around him and dripping acid, he remaining perfectly calm throughout, before firing scalpels at her and despatching her with a bottle of alcohol poured down her throat. The finest sequence is where Kyoya encounters a young girl in a park and is blasted and wounded by her as she erupts into pink flame, revealing that the flame is all the souls of those who have been killed in the city, whereupon Sayaka pleads for them to find peace, saying she cannot change what happened and is swept up into a vast storm of pink, only to see it transform into a snowfall of blue before she finally hugs the little girl as she dissolves into dust.
Really badly dubbed English trailer here:-
Full film avaiable online here:-