Nighty Night: Midnight Nightmares is a 1986 independent Japanese horror anthology, directed by Hirohisa Kokusho. The film was certainly unrecognized upon its initial release, receiving an extremely limited VHS run in Japan but soon faded into obscurity. It wasn’t long before the film was considered lost media, with no known copies of these VHS releases thought to exist. With this status of lost lasting for around thirty-five years and only a VHS cover art scan as proof of the film’s validity, it was considered to be near mythological in rarity even in Japan. Despite this, a copy of the film was discovered and was uploaded to The Internet Archive on the 9th Aug 2023, for all to enjoy.


The film is made up of four unconnected segments, Birthday Cocktail – A casual birthday party soon escalates after the guests become inebriated. Out of the Window – an apparition preys on the yearning of teenage students. Survival Game – A young lady is thrust into a game of cat and mouse with a murderous creature. Cinderella – A young lady’s body dysmorphia manifests into physical form. Each one is vastly unique to the others, ensuring an incredibly varied experience throughout.

Reminiscent of SOV horror classics of Japanese cinema, such as Guzoo: The Thing Forsaken by God – Part 1 (1986), Biotherapy (1986), Conton (1987), and Go Nagai’s Scary Zone series; Nighty Night has a distinct, low-budget charm to its visuals. Although the quality of the film is relatively poor due to the VHS rip, the film is still an exemplary example of Japanese V-cinema and all the extravagance associated with the genre – the primary being the amazing practical effects. Featuring some exemplary examples of blood-work, creature design, as well as some detailed stop motion; Nighty Night‘s attention is firmly fixed on delivering a visceral body horror experience to the audience.


Unquestionably deserving of cult classic status, Nighty Night is fraught with astonishing special effects and delivers an enjoyably fun experience overall. Whilst some segments are undeniably stronger than others, with Survival Game being the standout story, the film still conveys a congenial piece of body horror throughout its runtime.

Check out the full 74-minute version of Nighty Night: Midnight Nightmares (1986) below.


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