What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

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chazgower01
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by chazgower01 » 10 Nov 2017, 05:32

Girl Boss Revenge: Sukeban (Japan, 1973) DVD - 3/5
Sort of strange that Exploitation Digital chose THIS movie as one of their early releases. And for a Norifumi Suzuki movie, it’s kinda tame until the finale, where it seems the colors start to really pop and the girls get their revenge. Miki Sugimoto takes a beating as usual (is it any wonder she tired of these roles), and Reiko Ike slowly takes over the movie as usual, but really it all feels a little darker, a little less fun than some of the others.
What IS great about this DVD is the inclusion of a Norifumi Suzuki interview! Worth it just for that!

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 10 Nov 2017, 06:04

chazgower01 wrote:
HungFist wrote: Her 1st movie, actually...
I have a lazy habit at times of using imdb.com for Japanese movies, despite the fact that I know they aren't as on target with their information (They list Ninkyô hana ichirin aka Chivalry of One Lone Flower with Tatsuya Fuji as her first movie).
For Chinese films I use hkmdb.com, which is great.... is there a good site for Japanese film information that's comparable to these?
Chivalry of One Lone Flower is at the bottom of the IMDb listing for her 1974 films because they don't have a release date for it, only release year, hence its listed as the "oldest" by default. It actually came out 8 months later.

I use jmdb all the time, but it's in Japanese only. It's a lot more barebones than IMDb, basically just a text database, but very good for checking exact release dates or learning which films came out the same day as double features. For English sites, IMDb is generally good, you just have to keep in mind a lot of films are missing and there may be mistakes in the information.
chazgower01 wrote:Girl Boss Revenge: Sukeban (Japan, 1973) DVD - 3/5
Sort of strange that Exploitation Digital chose THIS movie as one of their early releases. And for a Norifumi Suzuki movie, it’s kinda tame until the finale, where it seems the colors start to really pop and the girls get their revenge. Miki Sugimoto takes a beating as usual (is it any wonder she tired of these roles), and Reiko Ike slowly takes over the movie as usual, but really it all feels a little darker, a little less fun than some of the others.
What IS great about this DVD is the inclusion of a Norifumi Suzuki interview! Worth it just for that!
This is my least favourite of the Girl Boss films. What bothered me most was the tiresome and blatant misogyny that seemed to be inherent in the script. Sure, these are exploitation films, but they are also supposed to be films where girls kick arse. In this film, all the females are constantly beaten, slapped, and raped even by the wimpiest of yakuza. It seems any male, no matter how weak, is by default stronger than the most badass girl boss. Example 1: how does the fight between the genre queens Ike and Sugimoto end? The former's boyfriend comes, slaps Miki in the face and drags Reiko in the car. What an anti-climax...

For an example of the opposite, please see the wonderful Criminal Woman: Killing Melody (if you haven't already), the most feminist of all the male audience serving sexploitation action flicks.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by chazgower01 » 10 Nov 2017, 10:43

HungFist wrote: I use jmdb all the time, but it's in Japanese only. It's a lot more barebones than IMDb, basically just a text database, but very good for checking exact release dates or learning which films came out the same day as double features. For English sites, IMDb is generally good, you just have to keep in mind a lot of films are missing and there may be mistakes in the information.
Cool... I'll figure out how to navigate it. Those release dates listed are great!
HungFist wrote:(Girl Boss Revenge: Sukeban) This is my least favourite of the Girl Boss films. What bothered me most was the tiresome and blatant misogyny that seemed to be inherent in the script. Sure, these are exploitation films, but they are also supposed to be films where girls kick arse. In this film, all the females are constantly beaten, slapped, and raped even by the wimpiest of yakuza. It seems any male, no matter how weak, is by default stronger than the most badass girl boss. Example 1: how does the fight between the genre queens Ike and Sugimoto end? The former's boyfriend comes, slaps Miki in the face and drags Reiko in the car. What an anti-climax...
Yeah, it seems as though they hang on to the very end to show them stand up to their attackers - they take a lot of abuse up until then. If I didn't have a pretty good idea of what was coming in the end, I might have not bothered to finish it. Don't know if you noticed, but the movie also seemed kinda of muted in it's colors up until the finale, where they really pop. I wonder if this was a specific director choice.
HungFist wrote:For an example of the opposite, please see the wonderful Criminal Woman: Killing Melody (if you haven't already), the most feminist of all the male audience serving sexploitation action flicks.
Yes, the girls are definitely in-charge in that movie!
Not sure why I didn't write a review of it, but enjoyed it very much... the jailyard fight between Reiko and Miki is a classic!

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 11 Nov 2017, 04:47

chazgower01 wrote: Cool... I'll figure out how to navigate it. Those release dates listed are great!
If you click on the release date you'll get a(n almost) complete list Japanese films released that year. Since studios opened their own films as double features back then (or triple, in case of Roman Porno) you can easily figure out which films were double features. Examples:

1968.06.28 (Toei)
- Onsen Geisha
- Return of the Scoundrel
* Tomisaburo Wakayama is well known for having hated and opposed Teruo Ishii's ero-guro films... my own theory is that that is partly because Toei often released Ishii and Wakayama films as double features and the Wakayama films were probably overshadowed by all the boobs in the Ishii posters... :lol:

1972.12.30 (Toho)
- Hanzo the Razor
- Lone Wolf and Cub: Babycart in Peril

1972.12.30 (Toei)
- Female Prisoner Scorpion: Jailhouse 41
- Brutal Tales of Chivalry: Torn Parasol

1973.01.13 (Toei)
- Girl Boss: Revenge
- Battles without Honor and Humanity

1974.04.27 (Toei)
- Return of the Street Fighter
- Tattooed Hitman
chazgower01 wrote: Don't know if you noticed, but the movie also seemed kinda of muted in it's colors up until the finale, where they really pop. I wonder if this was a specific director choice.
Other than the DVD transfer being a little less than perfect, it is certainly visually less appealing than its predecessor. I thought maybe it was because unlike the 3rd film, which was set in the outdoors of the beautiful Kyoto, the 4th one is set in the streets of Osaka, which is more of an industrial town and not that pretty a place. Or maybe Suzuki was just being lazy and didn't invest so much in the visuals. On the DVD interview he actually says they didn't really have good ideas for the films but kept making them anyway because they made money :lol:

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 11 Nov 2017, 05:14

Zatoichi's Pilgrimage (座頭市海を渡る) (Japan, 1966) [BD] - 3.5/5
The 14th film in the series promises a more spiritual approach with Zatoichi deciding to visit 88 shrines to atone for the lives he's taken. It is a bit of a shame the film does not ultimately pursue this path, but instead throws Zatoichi into another adventure when his journey is interrupted by an assassin sent after him. This is, nevertheless, an enjoyable and exceptionally romantic entry in the series with the wounded Zatoichi nursed back to health by a woman whose brother he killed. The lady is charmingly played by Michiyo Yasuda, who remains virtually unknown outside of Japan but was a major action star at Daiei in the late 60s, starring in films such as Kanto Woman Yakuza (1968), Bamboo Leaf Omon (1968) and Lady Sazen and the Drenched Swallow Sword (1969). This film is also "notorious" for having been unavailable outside of Japan for ages because Tarantino and Miramax had acquired the rights, apparently in case they'd decide to remake it.

Modern Yakuza: Three Cherry Blossom Blood Brothers (現代やくざ 血桜三兄弟) (Japan, 1971) [VoD] - 2.5/5
The 4th film in the series (not 5th; many English language sources mistakenly include the 1969 film "Outlaw of Shinjuku" in the series). Three small time gangsters (Bunta Sugawara, Tsunehiko Watase and Goro Ibuki) get involved in a deadly gang war after a suave gambler and ladies men (Asao Koike) arrives the town and causes a yakuza conflict. Quite a passable, but ultimately forgettable modern day yakuza film made just before the jitsuroku era. Groovy score and good performances (especially Ichiro Araki as a shy wanna-be gangster) are the film's assets. The film would probably rate a notch higher if there weren't scores of other, more accomplished yakuza films out there. Very watchable nevertheless.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by chazgower01 » 12 Nov 2017, 04:07

What Video on Demand service do you use?

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 12 Nov 2017, 10:50

chazgower01 wrote:What Video on Demand service do you use?
Amazon Video and DMM and DMM.

Be warned that most films on DMM are VHS era masters, though it doesn't really matter for films that have never received a better master. And you'll probably need a proxy service to access them from outside of Japan (payment is not a problem as Paypal works). If you're interested in Roman Porno (they have approx 650 titles available, including hundreds of films never released on dvd even in Japan) then taking the "Pink Channel" subscription (unlimited viewing for one month) for 3000 yen is a better alternative than paying 515 yen per title.

Amazon is probably even more difficult as they don't accept foreign credit cards (for VoD). It seems some people have figured a way around it, but I don't know what it is...

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by chazgower01 » 12 Nov 2017, 11:34

HungFist wrote:
chazgower01 wrote:What Video on Demand service do you use?
Amazon Video and DMM and DMM.

Be warned that most films on DMM are VHS era masters, though it doesn't really matter for films that have never received a better master. And you'll probably need a proxy service to access them from outside of Japan (payment is not a problem as Paypal works). If you're interested in Roman Porno (they have approx 650 titles available, including hundreds of films never released on dvd even in Japan) then taking the "Pink Channel" subscription (unlimited viewing for one month) for 3000 yen is a better alternative than paying 515 yen per title.

Amazon is probably even more difficult as they don't accept foreign credit cards (for VoD). It seems some people have figured a way around it, but I don't know what it is...

Awesome! Thank you!

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by chazgower01 » 12 Nov 2017, 13:31

Ong-Bak The Thai Warrior (Thailand, 2003) U.S. DVD - 3/5
Picked this up at a V-stock for $5, not having seen it since back when it first came out. Having been to Thailand a few times over the last year, I was curious to see if I viewed it any differently, and I do... it's still just a better than average entertaining movie, but it's cool to see the city I love so much and some of it's unique culture.
The Thai Buddha (much lesser known than the Chinese Buddha), the tuk tuks, the seedy back alleys, and of course, Muay Thai martial arts - it's all there, which for me, makes it more fun to watch.
Tony Jaa is the Jackie/Bruce hybrid they hoped, he just lacks the charisma of either of those two to crossover as a mainstream star and here in his first real feature, he's amazing as a fighter and an stunt performer/co-ordinator, but he NEEDS Petchtai Wongkamlao (as George/Humlae) there to add some much appreciated humanity and humor. Having the cute, tom-boyish Pumwaree Yodkamol (as Muay) as a female tagalong, helps as well.
The fighting and the stunts are pretty great, though they sometimes lack the fluid rhythmic style of Jackie Chan - Muay Thai is a FIGHTING martial arts - and like Jackie, Tony does all of his own stunts. He really is a physically gifted performer.
It's a mostly enjoyable, sometimes over the top, low budget foreign martial arts movie that introduced Tony Jaa to the rest of the world.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by grim_tales » 13 Nov 2017, 22:30

Score (Japan, 1995): 3/5

Entertaining actioner, felt like a hyped version of 90's B action from the US, if that makes sense.The DVD is pretty bad though.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Shingster » 14 Nov 2017, 05:31

HungFist wrote:Which ones would you consider the best films in the series? How about the worst?
Some of the best i would say: The Tale of Zatoichi, The Tale of Zatoichi Continues, Zatoichi and the Chest of Gold, Zatoichi and the Chess Expert, Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo. It's kinda hard to decide between many of the others because they all start to bleed into each other after a while! :D

As for worst, tbh I don't think there is a "crap" Zatoichi film per say but I do feel that the last couple of films in the 70s were below par. The 1989 Zatoichi revival is a little better than those two.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 14 Nov 2017, 08:49

I feel pretty much the same.

So far my favourites are The Tale of Zatoichi, The Tale of Zatoichi Continues, Zatoichi the Fugitive, Zatoichi on the Road, Zatoichi's Revenge, Zatoichi and the Chess Expert, and Zatoichi's Vengeance.

Least favourites: Zatoichi at Large, Zatoichi in Desperation, and Fight, Zatoichi, Fight.

Zatoichi's Cane Sword and Fight, Zatoichi, Fight are two films that seem to be very popular with fans, but I didn't really warm up to them like some others seem to. Not bad films, though.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Shingster » 15 Nov 2017, 06:27

Yeah I think as Katsu started to get more control over the franchise he made it more exploitative and imo that tone just didn't suit Zatoichi. I dunno if he was trying to compete with his aniki's Lone Wolf and Cub films but some of the stuff in one of those last 70s Zato films is just crass (a gang wanking off the village retard being one scene that struck me as puerile, low-brow comedy). You can get away with that sort of shit in Lone Wolf & Cub because it's so OTT tonally to begin with. Zato was more grounded and mainstream and was about connections/men apart or out of time (and was very Peckinpah-esque in that regard, especially the early Zatos), and I think when they started to betray that it just became generic.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 15 Nov 2017, 07:36

Very much agreed. I think there was an era in Japanese cinema in the early 70s when much of the cinema had a bit of an identity crisis. They were coming from the romantic and heroic 60s (if you allow a huge generalization) and heading towards the gritty and exploitative 70s. That transition took a few years, and during that time there were many films that fell between the two styles, especially around 1970-1971. They were simultaneously too crass and not crass enough, depending on the point of view. Many of Toei's yakuza films from that era, and some Daiei films with exploitative elements, are good examples.

Of course, that didn't really concern most of the master class filmmakers, like Gosha, Fukasaku, Okamoto, Masumura etc. who were pushing the boundaries and could make dark or light films regardless of the era. But I think you can see the problem in a lot of programmer pictures made by slightly lesser directors.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 15 Nov 2017, 08:16

grim_tales wrote:Score (Japan, 1995): 3/5

Entertaining actioner, felt like a hyped version of 90's B action from the US, if that makes sense.The DVD is pretty bad though.
I think it's a rather wonderful film. It's of course low budget Tarantino/Woo/Lam rip-off action trash, but executed with such insane energy that it reminded me of the craziest Hong Kong action films. And you gotta love it when the film is set in the US but the police cars have something like Manila Police Force (?) written on them (they shot the film in the Philippines).

I think it was intended as a DTV release, but got a theatrical release after they realized what a cool film they had in their hands.

German trailer
https://youtu.be/P9nsdM8ONNw

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Ivan Drago » 15 Nov 2017, 18:24

Instant Kung Fu Man (1977)

Early kung fu comedy with John Liu and Hwang Jang-Lee kept on the sidelines for the most part whilst two Yip Fei-yangs (one a crook, one a lazy Shaolin student) mess around - whatever happened to him anyway? It's actually fairly funny but lacks the universal appeal that makes the subsequent Jackie Chan Seasonal films so impressive.

Awesome use of the title theme from How Was The West Was Won!

6/10



The Return of Bruce (1977)

Bruce Le in Manila for assorted kung fu hi-jinks. Nothing special, some good fights, and this film's version of Wei Ping-ao makes him seem like Stallone - is it possible to be limp waisted as well as limp wristed?

4/10



Stranger from Canton (1973)

Very violent basher, released theatrically in the US as The Karate Killer, with Jason Pai Paio figghting some especially loathsome Ching villians (kind of a rarity prior to the Shaolin cycle started the following year). Terrific action and atmoshphere, but minus some points for the icky child torture scene

7/10
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by chazgower01 » 16 Nov 2017, 00:29

HungFist wrote: I think it's a rather wonderful film. It's of course low budget Tarantino/Woo/Lam rip-off action trash, but executed with such insane energy that it reminded me of the craziest Hong Kong action films....
Yeah... as a fan of all three of those guys, I will have to certainly check this out....
Ivan Drago wrote: Stranger from Canton (1973)
Very violent basher, released theatrically in the US as The Karate Killer, with Jason Pai Paio figghting some especially loathsome Ching villians (kind of a rarity prior to the Shaolin cycle started the following year). Terrific action and atmoshphere, but minus some points for the icky child torture scene
7/10
I've heard the fights in this are pretty brutal, and it's been on my short list to see for years....

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by chazgower01 » 16 Nov 2017, 00:30

Battles Without Honor and Humanity (Japan, 1973) Amazon - 3/5
This movie is chaotic and overwhelming through most of the first half hour, as characters appear and die in such a hurry, its hard to know exactly what’s going on. I started to enjoy it once I realized that the primary focus should be on Bunta Sugawara’s character Shozo, and the Yamamori family.
Late in the movie, Shozo's friend and sometime partner in crime Sakai (Hiroki Matsukata) says “If he (Yamamori) was a man of his word…neither (spoiler) nor (spoiler) nor (spoiler) would have had to die.” And that sums up why this is called Battles WITHOUT Honor and Humanity, as these Modern Yakuza gangsters fight and kill and lie and manipulate for position and power at any cost. Saying it’s the Japanese ‘Godfather’, would be like saying Mike Tyson is the Sugar Ray Leonard of the 80’s. Both successful fighters, two WAY different boxer’s.
This movie is a whirlwind, that took me some rewinds and some research to keep track of what was going on, and even though I’m maybe not as impressed with it as some reviews I’ve seen...After the smoke clears at the end, I do have to say I’m curious to see where the characters that are left go from here….
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 16 Nov 2017, 12:47

I like all of the films in the Battles Without Honor and Humanity series, especially the 2nd one, but in all honestly I feel most of Fukasaku's other films from the same era are better (e.g. Graveyard of Honor, Yakuza Graveyard, Cops vs. Thugs, Hokuriku Proxy War).

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by chazgower01 » 16 Nov 2017, 20:37

HungFist wrote:I like all of the films in the Battles Without Honor and Humanity series, especially the 2nd one, but in all honestly I feel most of Fukasaku's other films from the same era are better (e.g. Graveyard of Honor, Yakuza Graveyard, Cops vs. Thugs, Hokuriku Proxy War).
Cops vs Thugs is on U.S. Amazon Prime for free right now, so I hope to check it out this week.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by chazgower01 » 16 Nov 2017, 20:53

The Machine Girl (Japan, 2008) contv.com - 3/5
Hadn’t seen this in 7-8 years, but it popped up on a free movie site and I decided to re-watch it this morning. Over the top in a way that would make Sam Raimi proud, it’s the story of a school girl who’s brother is killed by the son of a yakuza. When she goes after them for revenge, she gets her arm chopped off, but comes back with a mini-gatling gun in place of that arm. There’s a little more to it than that, but let’s just say, it’s best not to get attached to any of the characters you experience during this movie.
“I’m the devil! I’ve turned into the Devil! And I’ll remain the Devil until I’ve found his enemies and killed every last one of them!”
If you like blood, and gore, and over the top violence, this is a wonderful film for you. Don’t expect it to be technically proficient in it’s delivery though. This is NOT a big screen Hollywood movie, but rather a low-mid budget shockfest from a director (Noboru Iguchi) who's ideas sometimes make better trailers than full length movies.
Gratuitous splatter movies are not necessarily my preference (though I’m not opposed to it), but this has so much more going for it, and the blood and gore is done with enough of a sense of humor (hence the Sam Raimi reference), that it makes it a fun little romp.
Minase Yashiro is cute as hell, but just as fierce as she can be - she carries this movie - her first feature movie. Former AV actress and Iguchi regular (Yuma) Asami plays a big part though and she is pretty fun to watch as well.
Still a fun movie.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Shingster » 17 Nov 2017, 02:21

HungFist wrote:Very much agreed. I think there was an era in Japanese cinema in the early 70s when much of the cinema had a bit of an identity crisis. They were coming from the romantic and heroic 60s (if you allow a huge generalization) and heading towards the gritty and exploitative 70s. That transition took a few years, and during that time there were many films that fell between the two styles, especially around 1970-1971. They were simultaneously too crass and not crass enough, depending on the point of view. Many of Toei's yakuza films from that era, and some Daiei films with exploitative elements, are good examples.

Of course, that didn't really concern most of the master class filmmakers, like Gosha, Fukasaku, Okamoto, Masumura etc. who were pushing the boundaries and could make dark or light films regardless of the era. But I think you can see the problem in a lot of programmer pictures made by slightly lesser directors.
Again, completely in agreement here, I think some filmmakers working within that rigid studio system definitely wavered a little in evolving all those classical genres and treading a path into this edgier era, and the filmmakers you list were the anchors that steadied the ship and they made it such a great time for Japanese cinema imo, especially for crime films.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 17 Nov 2017, 12:09

chazgower01 wrote:The Machine Girl (Japan, 2008) contv.com - 3/5
This is one film that I always wanted to like more than I could. I've always had two major problems with Iguchi's films. The 1st one is the humour, which is just too dumb for my liking, and the 2nd one is the underwhelming technical execution (e.g. I really think the action in The Machine Girl lacks punch in terms of editing, sound effects etc.). I always liked Yoshihiro Nishimura's work better in these regards, although he's been going downhill in the recent years.

I hate to speak ill of Iguchi's work, though. He's a wonderful man. I've met with him more than once, although just briefly, and he always treated me like an old friend even though I was a complete stranger. His humour also works really well in live situations.

As for Asami, I don't really like her hyper-active usual screen persona, but I think she can be surprisingly good in quiet and restrained roles, like Gun Woman.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 17 Nov 2017, 12:11

Zatoichi and the Doomed Man (座頭市逆手斬り) (Japan, 1965) [BD] - 3/5
Part 11. This is one of the lesser Zatoichi films for lacking interesting supporting characters, and for featuring a rather lame comic relief who steals Zatoichi's identity and goes around pretending to be him. Even then, this is an enjoyable, harmless film with some beautiful locations, excellent fight design and a delightfully compact 78 minute running time.

Secret Story: Plundering the Jewel (戦後秘話 宝石略奪) (Japan, 1970) [TV] - 1.5/5
Everybody's chasing a diamond in Sadao Nakajima's tiresome crime/action/drama. It was a based on a novel by Tsusai Sugawara, who was a Japanese writer and political figure campaigning against drugs, prostitution and sexually transmitted diseases. Sugawara also gave the incentive for a trio of superior Sonny Chiba crime films (A Narcotic's Agent's Ballad, Terrifying Flesh Hell, Tokyo-Seoul-Bangkok Drug Triangle, in 1972-1973). The problem with "Secret Story" is that the story is short on action and memorable characters, something that is not offset by the big name cast (Bunta Sugawara, Chiezo Kataoka, Tomisaburo Wakayama, and in what seems like a referential joke, Tetsuro Tamba as a gangster who shares his name and looks with his Key Hunter character) playing gangsters and other shady political/corporate figures. Nakajima's direction is uninspired as well, even though he was fresh off from one of his best pictures, Memoir of Japanese Assassins (1969). That kind of unevenness was typical of him, and in some ways he remains both over-rated and underappreciated with his remarkably vast but uneven filmography. "Secret Story" does have a stylish, hallucinatory ending that rewards the viewer, as well as some interesting bits set in Singapore, but in all honesty, much of the film is a chore to get through.

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chazgower01
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by chazgower01 » 18 Nov 2017, 15:25

Cops vs Thugs (Japan, 1975) Amazon Prime - 4/5
Continuing his cold, hard un-glorified look at the world of the yakuza, director Kinji Fukasaku, surprises us half way through the movie when a new no nonsense Chief (Tatsuo Umemiya) decides to try and clean up the police department. It really makes it tough for Detective Kuno (Bunta Sugawara), who’s deep ties to the Yakuza threaten his career, marriage, and friendship with under boss Kenji Hirotani (Hiroki Matsukata).
All three are superb, and it’s this dynamic that really kicks it into high gear and makes the movie work.
Of course, it doesn’t hurt to have Reiko Ike play Sugawara’s mistress, and I don’t know when they started to show pubic hair in Japanese cinema, but we get a bit of a peek at hers in a rough bedroom scene.
Leading to a final showdown, Matsukata's character tells us, “If necessary I’ll go to jail. But what about the mayor, assemblymen and the cops? They’re all foxes in the den. Why should only the yakuza be sent to jail?"

The spoiler tags don't seem to work, so if you're reading this in a public place, I apologize....
https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-wv4PMvqoxQo/ ... 4%2BPM.png

- I changed the pic into a link instead, just in case. - HungFist

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