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Minbo VHS

VHS video


3.9 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

Additional VHS Tape options Edition Discs
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VHS Tape
(Jun 13, 2000)
VHS video
$197.46 $15.00

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Product details

  • Actors: Nobuko Miyamoto, Yasuo Daichi, Takehiro Murata, Akira Takarada, Hôsei Komatsu
  • Directors: Jûzô Itami
  • Writers: Jûzô Itami
  • Producers: Nigel Sinclair, Seigo Hosogoe, Yasushi Tamaoki
  • Format: Color, NTSC
  • Language: Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Homevision
  • VHS Release Date: June 13, 2000
  • Run Time: 123 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews
  • ASIN: 630381834X
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #299,505 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Juzo Itami's daring satire of the Japanese mob so outraged the "Yakuza" that real-life thugs viciously attacked the director. Blending realism and raucous farce, Minbo pits buffoonish criminals against a fearless lawyer, played by Nobuko Miyamoto. Hired to protect a hotel against blackmailing mobsters, the courageous attorney rallies employees to fight back.


Who says filmmaking isn't dangerous? Writer-director Juzo Itami (Tampopo) found out the hard way. After the premiere of his 1992 film, Minbo, he was attacked and seriously injured by a knife-wielding yakuza (Japanese mobster).

Given the subject matter of Minbo, it's not surprising. This overly long film (123 minutes) paints an unflattering picture of the intimidation techniques of the Japanese mafia. They bully their way along a thin line that divides civil from criminal offense so they cannot be easily arrested, prosecuted, and jailed. One can only assume that Itami must have gotten pretty close to the truth or he wouldn't have been attacked.

Nobuko Miyamato (Itami's wife) plays minbo specialist Mahiru Inoue, a woman with a very personal reason for hating the yakuza. Tough on the outside but compassionate on the inside, she is employed to help the staff of the Hotel Europa rid themselves of a yakuza infestation so that they can host more respectable guests. It's an uphill battle for the large cast, and the story suffers along the way from Itami's characteristic meandering.

Instead of trying to cover the shortest distance between two points, Itami bounces after too many characters and weakens the impact of the story as a whole. Nobuko Miyamoto's performance is really terrific and she makes up for a lot, but it's too bad there's not more of her and a lot less of Yakuza 101. --Luanne Brown

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on August 12, 2013
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on June 19, 2015
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on July 26, 2003
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on January 13, 2014
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on December 27, 2005
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