MUTRONICS: THE MOVIE
The Guyver was the directorial debut of makeup artist and surrealist Screaming Mad George [real name Joji Tani], whose effects work has been showcased in the likes of the A Nightmare on Elm Street films, Society (1989), Bride of Re-Animator (1990) and Freaked (1993) to name a few. His co-director Steve Wang is also a makeup man and has worked on the likes of The Monster Squad (1987) and Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990) and subsequently became an employee of the Patrick Tatopoulos Studios. The film is disappointing. It has not been designed as anything more than a showcase for the two directors mutual creature creations. These admittedly are a good deal of fun particularly impressive is the multi-tentacular creature that Mark Hamill is transformed into near the end and the giant-sized dragon creation that David Gale turns into.
Screaming Mad George and Steve Wang are both of Asian ethnicity and are obviously fans of anime and Oriental chop suey pulp. They leap into the kung fu acrobatics and the superhero battles with the greatest of enthusiasm some battles go on for about ten minutes at a time. Unfortunately, the film has no higher expectation than this and remains wholly down at the level of cartoon superheroics. It seems further cramped by its low-budget, which fails to allow it to expand its superheroics much beyond a series of fights in back alleys.
Among the cast, Mark Hamill takes a turn as an obsessive law enforcement man. Best of all is David Gale of Re-Animator (1985) fame who gets into the over-the-top villainy with considerable relish. Heroine Vivian Wu went onto a respectable acting career, notably in Peter Greenaways The Pillow Book (1996) and 8½ Women (1999).
Steve Wang, directing solo this time, made a sequel, The Guyver 2: Dark Hero/Mutronics 2 (1994). Wang also directed the entertainingly silly Kung Fu Rascals (1993), another power-suit superhero film Drive (1996) and episodes of the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers tv series. Screaming Mad George has yet to return to the directors chair.
Full film available online here:-