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By Eric Campos | July 8, 2002

This one’s sure to be a cult classic along the ranks of “Story of Ricky” and even “Dead Alive”. Seriously! Once “Versus” gets a proper North American release, it’s gonna be the new kid on the block that all other ridiculously violent films will be held up against. This movie is a full two hours in length and hardly ever comes up for air with all its zombies, shoot outs, wire work kung-fu, sword fights and massive helpings of gore, all being spilled by a young, good looking cast that’ll leave you feeling very insecure about your own appearance. Aww, that’s alright! They pretty much all die gruesome deaths anyways, so there’s some solace for you.

What we have here in “Versus” is a “Highlander” type story as an age old sorcerer waits five hundred years for his arch nemesis to reincarnate and mature to an adult just so he and his cronies can kick his a*s again all over a forest that exists as a portal to the afterlife, turning anyone that dies upon its ground into a zombie. But that’s only part of the plot. The sorcerer’s arch nemesis also had a little girlfriend 500 years ago that had special blood flowing through her veins that when spilled upon the ground of the forest of resurrection, could bust the portal to the afterlife wide open, allowing the sorcerer to take over the world with his army of the dead. She has also reincarnated and matured and is brought back to the forest to fulfill the sorcerer’s evil plot.

Though the story’s fairly simple, the film still tends to get a little confusing as new characters just pop up out of nowhere, jumping into the fray like we’re supposed to automatically know who they are. In fact, I’m still not sure who some of these guys were, but it doesn’t matter, all you have to do is stick to the main characters’ plight at hand and your golden. You have an ultra violent joyride that plays like all the models from an issue of Japanese pop culture magazine “Popeye” deciding to converge upon a forest to do battle amongst a horde of zombies, loaded with Sam Raimi style camera work, splattery Peter Jackson gore, John Woo inspired shoot-outs and fight scenes taken straight out of the Matrix book of style. If you don’t have fun watching “Versus” then we’re gonna have to break out the paddles on you. Clear!

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