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Battle Royale:complete Col
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One Of The Most Controversial Film Series Of All Time
Now Available For The First Time In America
In 2000, director Kinji Fukasaku unleashed BATTLE ROYALE, his violently poetic epic about an innocent group of Junior High students forced by the government to hunt and kill their classmates for sport. It was nominated for 10 Japanese Academy Awards, launched a global phenomenon, and banned from screens by frightened civic groups and distributors across America. Three years later, the equally disturbing sequel -- featuring a new class, new rules, and a brutal terrorist plot by the first film's young survivors -- triggered its own tragic firestorm around the world. Now for the first time ever, you can see it all: Experience the entire BATTLE ROYALE saga on 4 discs -- including more than 3 hours of definitive Special Features -- that forever blasts open one of the most potent, shocking and savagely influential sagas in motion picture history.
''My favorite movie of the last 20 years…I wish I had made this movie.'' - Quentin Tarantino
''If you love The Hunger Games, Battle Royale sets the stage. One of the best - and most violent - genre films ever made. It's also a hell of a lot of fun.'' - Entertainment Weekly
TV Spot: Tarantino Version
Basketball Scene Rehearsals
Tokyo International Film Festival 2000
Special Edition TV Spot
Original Theatrical Trailer
Battle Royale Documentary
Special Effects Comparison Featurette
Audition & Rehearsal Footage
Instructional Video: Birthday Version
Battle Royale Press Conference
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Honestly I'd give the movie itself a 3/5 and I found Requiem to be quite dragging. I purchased this edition simply because I was in the mood to watch Battle Royale itself again and add it to my collection and this edition was only ~$6 more and came with additional content.
Now for the actual product review, it absolutely surpassed my expectations. From the photo I hadn't really known what to expect in terms of the case itself, which is why I included so many of my own photos in this review. The design completely blew me away.
Each disc is held in a sleeve every couple of "pages" in the BR yearbook/notebook-style case, and even though I've never been a fan of DVD sleeves vs the plastic ones I have these as an exception just because the design is so wonderful. The photos I included explain the gorgeous full-color pages better than I ever could.
And like a lot of Japanese special edition DVDs it comes with a clear plastic banded slip/dust cover, which can easily be removed or kept on for storage to your preference - which is why I included the last photo just so you can see that it slides off like most slip covers~
All in all this is by far my favorite DVD set in my collection just based on overall look. I hadn't expected such amazing quality for a collector's edition listed at less than $20. Definitely worth the price and then some. I still can't get over how cheap it was!♡
It's really good, an intriguing scenario with characters you want to see survive to the end trapped in the middle of it. With 42 students, the story can get a bit frantic yet the characters, even if they die soon after, are interesting enough for you to invest yourself in amidst the chaos. On the surface, it make look like a movie for violence sake, but it has a more intelligent edge within it where the violence accentuates the themes presented in the movie.
Onto it's sequel, saying it's not as good as the first is an understatement. Battle Royale II sucks in it's own right with a really bad pacing inconsistency with the movie starting off really fast paced, leading me to believe this would be over before I knew it, only to betray my hope by crashing into a brick wall with the latter half of the film being slow and seemingly never ending. With no interesting characters that stand out or have a great gravity to them undermining the theme of individuality it tries to present, and multiple plot holes, this movie does not hold a candle to even half of the first one.
The bonus features are cool and, although on DVD, DVD quality seems to be the natural quality for many of the videos here; so it being on DVD isnt a problem. Honestly, I'm happy i get a lot of bonus features with this.
Overall, I'm happy with this excluding the sequel.
The entire history behind Battle Royale itself is a rather intriguing one that can't be covered in this one review, though makes for a fun reading if you're curious and want to do a google search. Just know that North America has had the bad luck of school shootings and terrorist attacks deter any interest in releasing these two Japanese films until now. Though, while most of the heat the series takes is from the United States, it's interesting to note that the back of the packaging seems to suggest that this particular release is aimed towards a Canadian market, what with their "Made in Canada" sticker and Canadian movie rating, in comparison to the simple "Not Rated" blurb included for us in the states. Just an interesting observation.
As mentioned, the movies themselves are top notch, covering everything you'd expect in terms of violence as well as themes. The first movie is a very loose adaptation of the book, so I suggest picking that up for a more complete understanding, though the movie does a good job of standing well on its own. The second movie, in general, is also enjoyable enough, though without a second novel to base it off of, some consider this one significantly weaker than its predecessor. Regardless, there are enough twists in the sequel that separate itself from the first one and is a decent follow-up, though somewhat preachy.
My only gripes come from analyzing the small details--mostly in terms of the packaging. The set itself is presented in a book-style format, where each disc is inside the "sleeve" of a page. This makes removing and inserting each disc something of a chore in comparison to standard packaging. If you're afraid of scratching any discs, I'd recommend just keeping removing them and keeping them in a CD carrier, or something else more convenient. Each page of the booklet provides a nice spread, either taking screen captures from the movies or aspects from them, like the map, or student roster. What would have been helpful, though, is translating some of the text. While I thoroughly enjoyed the first movie, there are a good number of names tossed around, so having the student roster list with their pictures attached be translated would have been a big help. Additional minute details, like some screen captures being repeated between pages and the background picture for the grid of Area 6 not lining up with the grid itself when comparing with Areas 1-5 (the back of the page that holds disc 1, for reference) make for an overall sloppy design. The artwork for the back of the package is also notably spoiler-ey for the first film, crossing out all but the major characters as dead.
The choice of disc artwork also leaves me stumped. While there is clarification in the booklet itself as to which disc holds what movie, there's absolutely no indication of this on the discs themselves. A simple "director's cut" or "theatrical cut" would have been fine. Instead, each disc is marked by number with the text "Battle Royale" and "Survival Program." Not the most specific of text, especially when every disc has it. At the least, I would have expected use of the "BRII" logo for the disc containing the second disc, but no dice.
I should also mention that while the set has the Director's Cut and Theatrical Cut of the first movie (opinion seems rather split on which is better; I personally go with the Director's Cut if only for more footage), the Director's Cut for the second movie (apparently titled "Battle Royale: Revenge") is nowhere to be seen in this release. Normally, I wouldn't be too peeved about this, but to have two versions of one movie, and only one version of its sequel makes the titles of "The Complete Collection" rather misleading.
Still, I'm glad a North American release has made obtaining this movie significantly easier for fans as well as newcomers to the series that want to see a dystopian movie done the right way.