Stacy (2001) poster

Stacy (2001)


aka Stacy: Attack of the Schoolgirl Zombies

Japan. 2001.


Director – Naoyuki Tomomatsu, Screenplay – Chisato Ogawara, Based on the Novel by Kenji Otsuki, Producer – Naokatsu Ito, Photography – Masahide Iioka, Music – Toksatsu. Production Company – GAGA.


Natsuki Kato (Aiko), Toshinori Omi (Shibukawa), Tomoka Hayashi (Nozumi)


Japan is overrun by a condition that turns schoolgirl into zombies. These have been nicknamed Stacys. The Stacys first become infected with Near Death Happiness where they enter into a giddy euphoria about life and then die to be resurrected as zombies. Romero ReKill Units, both official and unofficial, have been formed to deal with the threat. The shy puppeteer Shibukawa is approached by one schoolgirl Aiko who is about to turn into a Stacy and asks him to be the one who kills her. Meanwhile, a scientist sets out to examine the nature of the Butterfly Twinkle Powder that creates the Stacys.

The Gonzo Japanese Splatter film emerged in the mid/late 2000s/10s with works such as Meatball Machine (2005), Hard Revenge, Milly (2008), The Machine Girl (2008), Tokyo Gore Police (2008), Robo Geisha (2009), Samurai Princess (2009), Big Tits Zombie (2010), Gothic & Lolita Psycho (2010), Mutant Girls Squad (2010), Zombie Ass: The Toilet of the Dead (2011), Dead Sushi (2012) and Bloody Chainsaw Girl (2016), among others. All of these centre around over-the-top gore, wilfully ridiculous action/martial arts moves, biomechanoid transformations and a fetishistic obsession with schoolgirls.

Stacy was directed by Naoyuki Tomomatsu who had previously made adult films with titles such as Eat the School Girl (1997) and Female Prisoner Ayaka: Tormenting and Breaking in a Bitch (2008). Tomomatsu has been directing genre material since this with the likes of Zombie Self-Defense Force (2006) and Maid-Droid (2008), as well as a number of odd genre/erotica hybrids such as Erotibot (2011), Red Sword (2012), Lust for the Dead (2012) and sequels, Future Century Amazons (2017), Rape Zombie Side Story: Hardcore of the Dead (2017) and Scissorpenis (2018). He is most famous for co-directing Vampire Girl vs Frankenstein Girl (2009), one of the most prominent films among the Gonzo Japanese Splatter fad.

Although it was made a few years before the genre took off, Stacy is, for the most part, a fairly typical example in the Gonzo Japanese Splatter Film. There are some entertainingly gore scenes – heads with chunks blown out of them, a zombie head still attached to its spinal column – although these never attain the deliriously over-the-top dementia of some of the other entries in the genre. (Stacy is made on the cheaper side in comparison). It also came out several years before the Gonzo Japanese Splatter genre gained its’ feet with Meatball Machine so what it is aiming towards seems far more embryonic. There is however the peculiar fetish with Japanese schoolgirls that runs through many of the abovementioned films – the mix of schoolgirls and zombies also turned up a little later with Attack Girls’ Swim Team vs. the Undead (2007) and High School Girl Rika, Zombie Hunter (2008).

Natsuki Kato as Aiko in Stacy (2001)
Natsuki Kato as Aiko

While the concept of schoolgirl zombies does get your attention, the film seems an odd conceptual mash-up that never quite comes together. The main problem that hampers Stacy is the lack of a real plot. The story often slips between various plotlines – the most substantial of these is the storyline about the puppeteer who meets one schoolgirl who takes him on a fun-filled trip as she prepares him to kill her. The other plots with the mercenaries and the mad scientist never amount to much, while there are also long sections that consist of infomercials and tv clips.

The film takes a bizarre left field turn towards the end, going from a zombie splatter film with a not-entirely-serious tone to one that starts to take itself seriously. The concluding scenes end on a long romantic paean to the character of Aiko and the way she touched the puppeteer, where the film almost seems to be aiming for something transcendent as we see how he created a tribute to her that ended up changing the world.

There is the odd amusing genre homage. We gets ads for a special chainsaw designed to deal with the zombies that fits over the hand and is called Blues Campbell’s Right Hand – a clear reference to The Evil Dead II (1987). There is also the suggestion “hell is too crowded” as a possible explanation for the zombies after the tagline “When there’s no more room in Hell, the dead will walk the Earth” byline from the poster for Dawn of the Dead (1978).

Trailer here

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