Tokyo Home Stay Massacre (2020)

A trio of Americans are about to get the shocking vacation of a lifetime in this horror film that brings an ancient deadly tradition to the modern age.

John, Spencer, and Sarah are three Americans who head to Japan to escape a tragedy from their past. Upon their arrival, they are introduced to their host family, led by the eccentric patriarch, who couldn’t be more excited to have them here. He introduces them to his family. Sarah fears something doesn’t seem right and when she is confronted daughter Chie, who warns them they will be put into the walls as a means to protect the family, she is scared out of her mind.

When the family goes to bed, the trio decides to film around the house for a video. They soon find some disturbing things which soon lean to the group getting knocked out. They awaken to find themselves bound and gagged. Soon enough, some dark secrets are revealed, and this once promising vacation becomes a fight for survival. To quote a tagline of a famous horror classic, who will survive and what will be left of them?

The duo of Hirohito Takimoto and Kenta Osaka have come up with a brilliant concept for a film. Meld the hospitality of the host family with the psychopathic styling of classics such as The Texas Chain Saw Massacre and of course, this being a Japanese film, add some of the maniacal bloodiness that has made the country’s horror genre one to watch. At a runtime of 75 minutes, this film makes it point known and makes a wild, crazy film that once again brings tourism into the mold (like Harpoon: Whale Watching Massacre) and the consequences of what can happen if you’re not careful.

Alex Derycz, Diana G., and Will Harrell play the trio of would-be victims to this psycho family, whose family name is never revealed and the patriarch, played by the singularly named Miyatani, is a cross between Drayton Sawyer and the Hitchhiker in terms of both his personalities. For the first half, he is just happy they are in his home and plays the nice host. The second half is where he amps up the madness, acting more like the Hitchhiker of Chain Saw in a maniacal mode. But that’s only a taste of what we get in the film.

If there can be a performer who can be the “Lin Shaye” of Japan, it’s Kimi Yuuki as the grandmother. When she goes insane because Diana G.’s Sarah is a vegetarian and will not eat the dish made because it has meat in it. Plus, she gives these sinister tendencies that would make Shaye proud. As if that’s not bad enough, it seems with the exception of the father, the rest of the family just seem very sinister and insane in the way they treat their guests. Even the neighbor Mr. Hotani sees Spencer and questions the patriarch before the “stare of doom”.

The special effects are a blend of the over the top practical bloodletting mixed with even more insane CGI bloody effects. One shocking scene involves a character taking on corrupt twin cops who proceed to engage in one of the most maniacal weapon matches: samurai sword vs. hammer. The madness ensues during the last half hour of the 75-minute running time and just goes extremely wild!

Tokyo Home Stay Massacre is a wild film that should help continue the “tourist horror” genre with this meshing that blends the likes of classics such as Texas Chain Saw Massacre with the eccentricities of Japanese cinema, along with some over the top practical and CGI gore!!! If you’re in for some crazy cinema, then you have to see this film!

WFG RATING: A

CultureShock JAPAN presents a Tokyo Bay Films production. Directors Hirohito Takimoto and Kenta Osaka. Producers: Wilco C. Rullens and Katie Rong. Writers: Hirohito Takimoto and Kenta Osaka. Cinematography: Hideki Shiota. Editing: Kenta Osaka.

Cast: Alex Derycz, Diana G., Will Harrell, Miyatani, Kimi Yuuki, Umiyuchi, Karin Tokushige, Kenta Nonaka, Yuuki Kawashima, Ai Nomura.

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