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When Yuji is unexpectedly saddled with what may be his real son, a sense of responsibility is born in him as he uses his lethal skills to find some sort of haven for his newly found family.
In this lean and mean movie, full of twists, shocks and violent death, Miike finds a glimmer of hope in the need for all of us to care for something.
Interview With Director
Interview With Editor
Full Length Commentary By Tom Mes, Acclaimed Writer On Japanese Cinema
Biographies & Filmographies
RUNNING TIME 95 MINS APPROX
ANAMORPHIC WIDESCREEN PRESENTATION
OPTIONAL ENGLISH SUBTITLES
Top Customer Reviews
This is a true Masterpiece of a film. Most of the films I have seen dealing with the criminal underworld are usually set in a nice environment. Everything looks too clean. Not with this film. There are not the usual beautiful women in bikinis and crime bosses smoking cigars on their yachts. None of that silly and stylized type of film we are all too familiar with. No, this film deals with reality: At least as close as one can come to the reality of this dark world of killers. The film is drenched with an atmosphere of hate, betrayal, backstabbing, deceit, and sweat. And done so in a way that make the viewer believe that they are watching a documentary. It's almost as if the viewer is following an event in real time as the criminal world is being exposed. The films narrative centers on one killer in particular. His name is Yuuji (Sho Aikawa). And for Yuuji, being a killer is all he knows.Read more ›
Then a woman turns up and dumps a mute boy on his door step saying that this is your father, she has puit up with him long enough and now the father can deal with it. Yuuji in unmoved and unconcerned as he can not even remember the woman's name. As he has another job to do the kid starts to tag along. As Yuuji has a fear of doing jobs in the rain he ends up waiting out the storm in a brothel where he makes a connection with one of the pros. His next job then presents him with an opportunity to change everything.
This is one of the more paced of Miike's films, it does have some gangster violence but instead dwells much more on the inter play between the main three characters and the almost familial bond that is allowed to burgeon. It has a poetic quality that is set against a plot so bleak that it is almost Dickensian, the boy is particularly good at carrying out a role with absolutely no dialogue yet you get to understand him perfectly.Read more ›
But even with his exile, his screwup is not forgiven. The Japanese boss has sent one of his thugs to Taipei to gun for Yuji; the thug lives on a rooftop and finds pleasure urinating from a great height. As well as the Japanese gunsel in his life, Yuji has a supposed son, a young boy of 7 or 8, foisted on him by a woman he barely remembers sleeping with, then finds a prostitute to accompany him in his aimless day-to-day existence.
Yuji is completely faithful to his Taipei boss, flawlessly in fact, and assassinates the brother of a lawyer whose vengeance knows no bounds. This sets in motion a tragic cycle of events that, while fraught with violence, still manages to convey, more than anything else, a deep sadness in a life wasted on taking other lives.
This is a great film, a unique one for Miike, and the DVD has a terrific special feature included--two separate interviews with Miike taped at different times. This gives the viewer some real insight into the mind of one of Japan's most interesting contemporary filmmakers.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is only the third movie by director Takashi Miike that I have watched the other two being 13 Assassins and Audition both of which had a lot more violence in them so I was not... Read morePublished on April 28, 2012 by J Tate
No gore, no shock, just a raw well done character study. If you admire Miike's work you must have this DVD in your collection. It is one of my favorites.Published on January 28, 2009 by J. Lint