Eko Eko Azarak: Wizard of Darkness (Eko eko azaraku, 1995)

Promises, on its DVD cover, "Satan worship, lesbian orgies, and buckets of blood." Naturally, I couldn't resist. In grand old grindhouse tradition, it couldn't deliver what it promised. For "lesbian orgy", read utterly superfluous make-out scene between satanist teacher and student (as we all know, all lesbians everywhere are satanists). For "buckets of blood", read...well, buckets of blood. Anyway, this is a J-horror film that's refreshingly not a rip-off of The Ring. Which could be because it was made before The Ring. Instead it's like The Devil Rides Out meets any teen slasher flick. Plot: a cabal of devil worshippers is trying to conjure Satan in a high school. I know my friends and I tried to do that several times. You think I'm kidding? Pretty young witch Misa (Kimika Yoshino) transfers in, and immediately becomes suspect for the weird shit going on because she's handy with a voodoo doll. She and twelve other students are trapped in the school one night, offered up one by one for slaughter in the great Wake Satan experiment. The film is silly, badly acted, tacky, and short - just what a horror film should be. The most interesting touch is in setting up a potential cult heroine and then having her prove utterly useless in most of the film (her powers have been nullified by a curse). Three sequels followed, nonetheless.

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