My Cultural Diet

358 reviews of movies, TV shows, books, restaurants, etc. My own private Goodreads, Letterboxd, and Yelp all rolled into one (more info here). Ratings are 100% subjective, non-scientific, and subject to change. May contain affiliate links.

2 out of 5 stars


As you might’ve guessed by now, I’m a bit of a sucker for cheesy Japanese sci-fi movies from the late ’80s and early ’90s (e.g., Mechanical Violator Hakaider, Zeiram). Gunhed is one such movie that I’ve been wanting to see for almost thirty years now, ever since I stumbled across the manga back in high school. (It’s funny how such things can remain lodged in your subconscious for decades.) Of course, I wasn’t expecting it to be good when I finally did see it. I mainly wanted to see Gunhed for its visual effects, model work, and cyberpunk designs — which are pretty dated but also possess a certain charm when compared to today’s CGI fests. But Gunhed also possesses an overly convoluted plot about bandits trying to scavenge technology on a forbidden industrial island that cribs an awful lot from James Cameron. What’s more, the editing is often to the point of incoherence (which sadly, obscures the giant mecha combat that’s a main selling point for a film like this) and it has an annoying kid character (one of my biggest movie pet peeves).

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