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Fantasia 2021: “Prisoners of the Ghostland”


Rating: 2 out of 5.

The beauty of film festivals is its ability to offer films that can make us forget about heavy films we have already seen. So we can rest for an hour and a half, enjoy the nonsense presented to us, and enjoy how good fights against evil in an equal battle.

Set in Japan, a ruthless bank robber (Nicolas Cage) is sent to prison when he kills innocent people during a robbery, including a child. It’s due to his reputation the Governor (Bill Moseley) asks him to find his missing adopted granddaughter (Sofia Boutella). To make sure that the man won’t run away and not hurt his relative, the Governor puts on a notorious criminal leather suit, embellished with a bomb, that will explode if he will be late.

The film from Japanese filmmaker Sion Sono is full of energy, even though the premise of it is as ridiculous as it could get. It’s still so fun to watch, even after a long day you won’t feel tired nor bored of it at all. Having Nicole Cage as the lead is always appreciated, as it seems there is no character left at this point that can be played by him. Indeed, there is not much acting required from his character, just to show up, which is what Cage does, knowing how talented he is and the lack of talent he showcases in this feature.

The fun part is, for Hero (Cage’s character), it’s a matter of a day before the leather suit he wears will explode if he doesn’t bring Bernice back. And when it does, partially, it will be the funniest thing you will see in your whole week. As for the film, I won’t exaggerate saying how bad it is. But it’s so entertaining, you will ignore how awful it is. Because if you are an eccentric viewer, then “The Prisoners of Ghostland” should be your first choice. And when you do that, do not forget about popcorn as an add on to the entertainment you are about to have.

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