Ninja Girl is a political satire from director Yu Irie. He previously directed (8000 Miles) That premiered at NYAFF a little over a decade ago.
It takes place in a small town where corruption exists in the form of an anti-immigrant campaign. That campaign runs rampant and ruthlessly. Miu, who works for the government, is endowed with a family secret. And she decides to go up against the efforts of the area’s racist consortium.
With a title like Ninja Girl, you would expect there to be big martial arts action scenes and sword fights. That is not what you get here with the title being more metaphorical. The most ninja-like stuff that happens in the film is sneaking around to get information, and distractions like popping the tires of a car.
The film has some good commentary about anti-immigration, an issue that still occurs in some counties even to this day. That’s especially true with the number of people it affects and has an impact on.
It also has a wacky soundtrack with Japanese pop songs playing during a chase scene and various montages.
One area where the film really could have improved upon is that of the anti-immigration campaign and the government. They don’t have much of a presence in the film and it doesn’t really show the terrible actions they commit. It can be hard to be afraid of an organization’s actions you never get to truly experience.
Tonally as well, the film can be all over the place with a serious scene about anti immigration. That scene follows a ninja scene with them pulling some sort of silly distraction.
Ninja Girl is a very interesting film to say the least. Sadly, it needed to explore some of its ideas more and pick a coherent tone.