MFKZ Review: The superhero anime-inspired story you didn’t know you needed.
MFKZ effectively blends Japanese anime and Western animation themes and creates a dark, fun, and crazy superhero-like story that audiences will love.
The film feels incredibly unique in the way it builds it dark and gritty world with run-down apartments, gangs, and characters that attempt to thrive in a low-income area. All of the elements are on full-display throughout and it made the film’s more mature story beats work really well. This grounded setting is also brought to life through the concept of alien invasion and this sci-fi story beat, which would often not work with this setting, actually proves to be a strong part of the story. There’s a growing sense of mystery of why Angelino starts having these visions after a small accident and it’s a sense that is tough to ignore.
There are moments in the story, though, that could’ve been better as there is just too much going on from time to time. There are some side plots and certain side characters that are never given enough light to feel fully fleshed-out so they feel more like distractions than anything. It’s unfortunate too as I really enjoyed some of their crazy personalities and felt that they could add to main plot rather than diverting us from it.
The film’s dark tones also bleed into its humor as its lead characters have a great, humorous dynamic that’ll be impossible not to enjoy. This is all thanks to the excellent voice acting from Kenn Michael and Vince Staples as the two have great friendly chemistry that audiences will love. They spout plenty of pop culture references and have some very Meta humor that didn’t really work for me in the beginning, but ultimately grew on me. The cast is rounded out by other veteran actors, like Danny Trejo, Michael Chiklis, RZA, and Giancarlo Esposito, who bring an effort that makes each character truly unique.
Where the film was the most surprising to me was how strong the superhero elements of MFKZ are. There are strong vibes of Marvel’s Venom throughout Angelino’s fight sequences mixed with Deadpool-like humor and it was really nice to see it applied to an entirely new story. There’s also some bloody battles Angelino has that show how dire his situation and some pretty crazy moments that perfectly rivals your favorite modern blockbusters.
As a whole, the crazy and outlandish antics of MFKZ make it a film that is both memorable and incredibly unique. Some of the cogs in the machine are little rusty and fall apart, but it still shapes up to be a pretty smooth and enjoyable ride throughout. It would be honestly great to see more, especially because you can enjoy this even if you hate anime, but even if we don’t it still holds up as a solid film on its own.