Reviewed by By Michael Ferraro: Perhaps it should be known that, aside from some of Miyazaki’s work (especially Spirited Away), there hasn’t been too much in the anime world that has truly captured my imagination. I think it started with Akira, which I first saw when I was a freshman in high school. I never understood the hype around it, and when I finally got around to seeing the original source material, I understood said hype even less. As the years progressed, I have seen only a limited amount of anime since (so by no means am I a scholar).
Which brings me to GYO: Tokyo Fish Attack!, a new piece of work based on a manga by Junji Ito (Uzumaki). Having not read the original work, there will be no comparisons to the source material discussed here. Instead, let’s dive right in to the situation at hand – a city under siege by various-sized fish running around with mechanical appendages allowing them to travel on land.
The film centers on three friends taking a quick summer vacation to celebrate their graduation. There is Kaori, who takes center stage of the plot; her slutty friend Erika, and her overweight shy companion, Aki. The three hold up in a friend’s cabin when a strange stench overcomes them all. Soon, the source of the stench is discovered, when a shark pops its head through the window in an attempt to get some lunch.
Soon, the exact devices running the fish (it’s like something out of a Tetsuo film), starts spreading to humans coming into contact with them. The first to go is – can you guess? Kaori’s slutty friend, Erika, is punctured in the foot. Soon her body starts changing into an overweight cow, emitting a foul stench anytime she breathes.
And so the story progresses from the weird, to the absolute strange and indescribable. Kaori spends the majority of the film looking for her boyfriend, before the walking fish infects either of them. During her journey, she’ll encounter enough flatulence and excrement you can handle.
While GYO: Tokyo Fish Attack! succeeds in creating a strange environment, odd set pieces, and hilarious gross-out moments, it fails to provide any sort of reason for the chaos. In zombie film, no one ever seems to care why there are zombies. Maybe it’s because our suspension of disbelief for such chaos has been aptly trained throughout the years. But where is the suspension for walking, farting, mechanical fish? It doesn’t yet exist.
So don’t let that stop you from enjoying the gross ride of GYO: Tokyo Fish Attack!