Erotibot is the latest film from the production company that gave the world such highbrow fare as Big Tits Zombie and The Horny House of Horror. Just by the titles you pretty much know not to expect art house or mainstream films and Erotibot doesn’t disappoint when it comes to meeting lowbrow expectations. However it does disappoint when it comes to the amount of flesh on display, but more on that later!
Tamayo, played by the very sweet Mahiro Aine, is a petite heiress to her grandfather’s fortune and lives in the Japanese equivalent of a chateau, her every need attended to by two humanoid robots, namely Bot 1, who is a rather pompous but very capable robot and Bot 2 who is a hulking, very strong, handyman with a metal head and a slow Frankenstein-like gait.
For her 18th birthday she is sent another robot that is more advanced, being waterproof, hence can now give her a good rubdown in the bath. This robot is also rather special in that he can dream and consequently as the two get to know each other they start fantasising about one another in typical misty Mills and Boon fashion, as seen through a soft focus lens.
Cut to a slightly menacing castle in the mountains where Tsukiyo, (played by Japanese adult video star Maria Ozawa), plots with her henchwoman Azami (Asami, another AV starlet) to take back the fortune that she feels is hers by right off of our young heroine. A man calling himself the Twilight Detective shows up and offers our evil stepsister help so she gets him to hack into the circuits of the robots so they turn against their mistress. This works with Bots 1 and 2, but not our all-new hero robot, Bot 3, whose more human-like attributes make it impossible for them to override his core programming.
SPOILER ALERT: As it turns out the Twilight Detective is working for the rich grandfather so betrays the evil stepsister and sides with our loved-up couple in the end and helps them turn the tables on their would be nemesis, allowing them to live happily ever after – well until Tamayo wakes up and realises it was all a strange erotic dream!
Let’s face it, with a name like Erotibot, no one could expect Oscar worthy performances and high production values, but one would hope to see a fair bit more sex then one actually gets within its slight running time. Perhaps Monster Pictures did originally make a hardcore version and this would explain the short running time and relative lack of eroticism in this possibly truncated 18-certificate version?
On the plus side the film is goofily entertaining with its low production values actually helping to endear itself to its audience, although I’m not sure who it’s being aimed at. There’s not enough flesh on display to sate porn fans, there’s not enough gore to satisfy horror fans and the comedy is a little too Japanese to sit well with Western audiences. For example, Bot 1, when having sex for the first time with our heroine, tells her to be more resisting and coy as this is what turns men on – most definitely a Japanese thing me thinks! It kind of reminded me of some of the early 70s British sex comedies, starring the likes of Robin Askwith, which were kind of fun in a daft way but didn’t really work as sex films or as proper comedies either.
The performances are pretty much what one would expect from this kind of film, but are nowhere near as wooden as in many an adult feature. It’s a pity Maria Ozawa isn’t on screen more as she certainly had great screen presence and seemed to be relishing her chance being in a more mainstream movie.
Erotibot was obviously shot on the cheap, but to give them their due some of the gore effects and robot costumes were still a lot of fun in a Peter Jackson and Teletubbies sort of way!
Overall if you enjoy Japanese erotica with a sci-fi angle you’ll certainly crack a few smiles at this low rent flick, but I’d probably advise most fans of classier Japanese cinema to stay away.
Reviewer: Justin Richards
Bounty Films are releasing Erotibot on DVD on 26 September so expect to see it hitting the shelves of your local HMV real soon. The extras on the disc include a bizarre trailer and two interviews with Asami and Maria Ozama. While Asami spoke only in Japanese and didn’t seem to properly answer some of the questions posed to her, Maria came across, in her slightly broken English, as being a lot of fun and pretty much up for anything including more mainstream films if she’s offered the chance; let’s hope she is…