NYAFF Midnight Movie: Goke, Body Snatcher from Hell


[For the month of July, we will be covering the New York Asian Film Festival and the (also New York-based) Japan Cuts Film Festival, which together form one of the largest showcases of Asian cinema in the world. For our NYAFF coverage, head over here. For Japan Cuts, here.]

I already mentioned tonight’s NYAFF midnight movie, Boxer’s Omen (1983), which by all indications is a hex-filled martial arts hootenanny. I’d be remiss if I didn’t also let everyone know about Saturday night’s midnight movie, 1968’s Goke, Body Snatcher from Hell (Kyuketsuki Gokemidoro). This looks more staid than Boxer’s Omen but just as bizarre in its own way. Here’s a synopsis:

A toy jet liner cuts through blood-red skies (a shot Quentin Tarantino admits he lifted for Kill Bill vol. 1). Inside are the dregs of humanity: a nasty shrink, an arms dealer, a crooked politician, a hitman, a widow, and a terrorist. In a confluence of unhappy accidents — suicide birds crash into the plane, a terrorist hijacks it, a UFO attacks it — they crash into a rocky landscape that looks less like Japan and more like the Ninth Circle of Hell.

Part Lost, part Hausu, and part Mario Bava movie, Goke sounds like one hell of a night. Look for our review of Goke early next week. I will be in attendance, so say hello if you spot me.

[Goke, Body Snatcher from Hell will be screening at Lincoln Center’s Walter Reade Theater Saturday, June 30th at 11:59 PM]

Hubert Vigilla
Brooklyn-based fiction writer, film critic, and long-time editor and contributor for Flixist. A booster of all things passionate and idiosyncratic.