The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread! Shadow Warriors out now

Unread post by HungFist » 30 Aug 2015, 10:25

Stills from one of my favourite Chiba films, the the WWII noir / commando action film Army Intelligence 33 (1968). Chiba plays a young soldier who is forced to become a spy for the Japanese army. Later he is sent on a commando mission to the enemy headquarters in Southeast Asia. I'm praying Toei or some other company will put this out on DVD one of these days.

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In case anyone was wondering, my Chiba Festival coverage (which I still haven't completed) can be found in the other thread:
http://www.bulletsnbabesdvd.com/forums/ ... 9&start=16

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I'll be posting more about Chiba once I complete my 100 Chiba kumite (trying to see 100 Chiba films... I'm still about 10 films short)

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 12 Oct 2015, 14:16

Just rewatched Ninja Wars. Slightly too long, but enjoyable ninja film. Great production values for a film with quite a bit of exploitation in it - or maybe the other way round: quite a bit of exploitation for a mainstream film that is essentially an idol film (Noriko Watanabe + Hiroyuki Sanada). Loved the romantic ending; made me wanna sacrifice myself for my girlfriend (preferrably after killing a few evil monks first).

I happen to own the original pamphlet, too. A few photos:

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Sanada, Watanabe, Yakushimaru on Watanabe's (17) birthday party
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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 12 Oct 2015, 14:25

oh right, should post this too:

Keanu Reeves meets Chiba:
https://youtu.be/d4Rw347pkZE

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by grim_tales » 12 Oct 2015, 17:18

:o Sonny Chiba doesnt actually look that old to me at all.

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 12 Oct 2015, 17:36

He's 76 but he's in better health than many men in their early 60s.

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 06 Nov 2015, 11:14

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(ad for the old box set release)

Toei is finally re-releasing the classic detective/action show Key Hunter (1968-1973), starring Tetsuro Tamba and Sonny Chiba, which has been OOP for a long time, on DVD.

This is the TV show that made both Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan fans of Sonny Chiba. The show apparently had quite a bit of following in Hong Kong. Tetsuro Tamba is the main star, but Chiba plays a major role as one of the detectives and was responsible for designing all the action scenes. The series features quite a lot of classic stunts performed by Chiba, as you can see in the video below.

Top 5 Key Hunter Stunts Chosen by Fans:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6SXggYiYp8

Toei originally released a 5 disc box set in 2009, which has been OOP for a long time and impossible to obtain for a decent price. The box set contained a selection of 20 episodes, each running about 50 minutes. It's too bad we can't get the entire series, but it ran nearly 300 episodes so it would be quite impossible to put them all out. Here is the original product page for the box set:
http://www.toei-video.co.jp/DVD/keyhunter.html

Toei is now re-releasing those five discs from the box set, starting in March (one volume each month, five in total). I'll be picking them up for sure. I have copies of the rental discs, and I'm not proud of that, but I just couldn't afford it. Used copies of the set were going for 500 dollars the last time I checked.

The episodes included are:
第1話 「裏切りのブルース」
第27話 「殺しの招待旅行」
第28話 「太陽に帰った殺し屋」
第60話 「パラシュート殺人部隊」

第105話 「世界殺人集団 南国の決斗」
第109話 「俺は西部の殺し屋キッド」
第120話 「宝石泥棒 裸で御免なさい」
第132話 「日本アルプス 大追跡作戦」

第135話 「吸血昆虫島 上空異状あり」
第140話 「人殺し あの手この手」
第154話 「サギ師の皆さま ふところにご用心!」
第161話 「荒野の列車 大襲撃作戦」

第162話 「蒸気機関車 大渓谷の決戦」
第168話 「サイコロGメン 死んで貰います」
第171話 「お化け怪獣大戦争」
第185話 「真昼の決戦!すれすれ愚連隊」

第196話 「1972紅の翼 大空を行く」
第210話 「いんちきキイハンター探偵局」
第225話 「大空のギャング 現金強奪作戦」
第262話 「また逢う日までキイハンター」(最終回)(Final episode)

The first episode was directed by Kinji Fukasaku, btw.

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(picture of the old rental release. The new releases will probably have the same covers)

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 06 Apr 2016, 15:58

Toei will finally release Shadow Warriors III (1982) on DVD! Just like Shadow Warriors II, the series will be released in two box sets.

Box Set I
- episodes 1-13
- 4 discs
- 12 page booklet
- 2016/08/03
- http://www.allcinema.net/prog/show_dvd. ... sid=983166

Box Set 2
- episodes 14-26
- 4 discs
- 12 page booklet
- 2016/10/05
- http://www.allcinema.net/prog/show_dvd. ... sid=983167

The series is currently screening on Toei Channel, so I think we can expect the same print (with better encode). Here are some screencaps from the television version.

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I haven't had time to watch the show yet, but it looks great. I love the opening theme, and the action scenes look fantastic.

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 14 May 2016, 10:12

Toei is releasing the tokusatsu series New Seven Color Mask (新 七色仮面) (1960) on DVD on September 14, 2016. Or, well, half of it. More about that later.

New Seven Color Mask was Sonny Chiba's first work as an actor. It was a follow-up to Seven Color Mask (1959-1960) which had starred Susumu Wajima. After Wajima dropped out in 1960, Chiba was made the new star and the show was then called New Seven Color Mask.

Toei is releasing 4 Disc Box Set (HD Remaster) with 13 episodes, or stories 5&6. The series was divided into "stories", each of which ran anything between 6 and 13 episodes. The original Seven Color Mask told stories 1-4. New Seven Color Mask told stories 5-7. This DVD set contains stories 5 (episodes 1-6) and 6 (episodes 7-13). Story 7 (episodes 14-26) is not included, although episodes 14 is supposed to be included as a bonus feature. Perhaps Toei will release Story 7 later if this box set sells well enough.

Here's an old VHS cover for one of the New Seven Color Mask casettes.
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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 29 Jun 2016, 15:59

HungFist wrote:Toei is releasing the tokusatsu series New Seven Color Mask (新 七色仮面) (1960) on DVD on September 14, 2016. Or, well, half of it. More about that later.

... Story 7 (episodes 14-26) is not included, although episodes 14 is supposed to be included as a bonus feature. Perhaps Toei will release Story 7 later if this box set sells well enough.

Here's an old VHS cover for one of the New Seven Color Mask casettes.
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Well, this mystery was solved.

"第15話~第26話は、原版不明の為収録されておりません。"
- http://www.toei-video.co.jp/data/hs/vca ... 10020.html

"Episodes 15-26 are not included because the film reels are missing".

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 01 Jul 2016, 11:59

HungFist wrote:Toei will finally release Shadow Warriors III (1982) on DVD! Just like Shadow Warriors II, the series will be released in two box sets.

Box Set I
- episodes 1-13
- 4 discs
- 12 page booklet
- 2016/08/03
- http://www.allcinema.net/prog/show_dvd. ... sid=983166
Image

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 10 Jul 2016, 08:49

HungFist wrote:Toei is releasing the tokusatsu series New Seven Color Mask (新 七色仮面) (1960) on DVD on September 14, 2016.
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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 28 Aug 2016, 10:18

The first part of this post has nothing to do with Chiba, buy anyway...

What a glorious screw up! I bid on a Which is Stronger: Karate or the Tiger (1976) poster. I thought it was a standard thin poster, but it turned out to be 4 times bigger than I expected! And it is bloody gorgeous!

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I bought a couple of Sonny Chiba posters: Game of Chance 2 (1967) and Yakuza Deka 3: Poison Gas Affair (1971).

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These are the small size posters I was talking about. Same height as standard Japanese movie posters but half the width.

I went all MacGyver to get them on my wall without causing any damage to the posters (remember, they are 40-50 years old). I made a hooking system using a girls' accessory pack I found from a 100 yen store and put small pieces of white paper between paper clips and posters. I even used an iron hair pin that my girlfriend forgot here on top of the poster with a small magnet behind the poster to pull the top and bottom half of the Tiger poster (it comes in two halves) together.

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 14 Sep 2016, 05:56

Marc Walcow is in Japan interviewing Sonny Chiba for upcoming BD release(s?)

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- https://twitter.com/outcastmarc/status/ ... 5665736704

He also posted earlier

"Off to Tokyo for a week to interview six people about 11 Japanese films, dating from 1964-1978, all for Blu-ray release in 2017. Maybe more."
- https://twitter.com/outcastmarc/status/ ... 1384844288

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by Guro Taku » 15 Sep 2016, 20:03

If those are Arrow BDs we're talking about here, I'm more afraid than excited.

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 10 Jan 2017, 07:51

Toei will release the Sonny Chiba TV show The Bodyguard (1974) on DVD May 10, 2017.

6 Disc set, with all 26 episodes.

I've been recording this show from Toei Channel (currently broadcasting) but haven' t watched it yet other than having taken a brief look. Looks cool. Etsuko Shihomi and Jiro Chiba co-star. Reiko Ike and Masashi Ishibashi are in at least one episode.

A couple of brief TV screencaps
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Chiba
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Jiro Chiba
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Etsuko Shihomi
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Reiko Ike
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Also, I bought a new poster: A Narcotics Agent's Ballad (1972)
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One of my favourite Chiba movies.

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 13 Jan 2017, 16:14

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Synopsis:

Shinichi "Sonny" Chiba is a martial arts "manimal" in the ultra-70's, 100% bizarre mixture of horror, action and sci-fi that is Wolf Guy, one of the rarest and most sought-after cult films produced by Japan's Toei Studio. Based on a manga by Kazumasa Hirai (creator of 8 Man), and never before released outside of Japan, it's a genre film classic waiting to be discovered and a completely unclassifiable trip into phantasmagoric funk.

Chiba stars as Akira Inugami, the only survivor of a clan of ancient werewolves who relies on his supernatural powers to solve mysterious crimes. After a series of bloody killings perpetrated by an unseen force, Inugami uncovers a conspiracy involving a murdered cabaret singer, corrupt politicians, and a plot by the J-CIA to harvest his blood in order to steal his lycanthropic powers! At the same time, Inugami also discovers the truth behind his family heritage, and that he may not be the last of his kind.

Directed by B-movie genius Kazuhiko Yamaguchi (Sister Streetfighter, Wandering Ginza Butterfly, Karate Bear Fighter), Wolf Guy truly is one-of-a-kind, with Chiba in full effect as the part-man, part-wolf, all-karate action hero and a collection of familiar 1970's Toei actors in support. Violence, action, nudity, real surgical footage, and a psychedelic musical score all work together to create an unforgettable trip to the heights of Japanese cinematic weirdness.

SPECIAL EDITION CONTENTS:
• High Definition digital transfer
• High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentations
• Original uncompressed mono audio
• New optional English subtitle translation
• New video interview with actor Shinichi "Sonny" Chiba
• New video interview with director Kazuhiko Yamaguchi
• New video interview with producer Tatsu Yoshida
• Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Wes Benscoter

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Patrick Macias and a history of Japanese monster movie mashups by Jasper Sharp.


Release Date: 24th April 2017

http://www.arrowfilms.co.uk/shop/index. ... uct_id=932

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 14 Jan 2017, 07:13

Just ordered two copies of Wolfguy. Gotta support this release! I can give the second copy as bithday present to a Japanese friend.

As anyone who's been reading the Chiba thread knows, this is my favourite Chiba film out the 130 I have seen so far (of course The Street Fighter is almost as good).

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by Guro Taku » 14 Jan 2017, 10:09

I preordered it as well, telling myself that even if they screw up the transfer again, it'll still be worth the purchase for the interviews.

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 14 Jan 2017, 12:24

Guro Taku wrote:I preordered it as well, telling myself that even if they screw up the transfer again, it'll still be worth the purchase for the interviews.
My thoughts exactly. I'm relatively confident they won't screw it up since a) this one already has a decent HD scan available, and b) I'm pretty sure they learned something from last time.

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by saltysam » 14 Jan 2017, 14:45

Looks bonkers,i'll pick this up. Any other english-friendly Chiba blu's about?
working class blu-ray fan

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 14 Jan 2017, 16:44

saltysam wrote:Looks bonkers,i'll pick this up. Any other english-friendly Chiba blu's about?
Arrow might release something more since they licensed "about a dozen Toei titles" but no announcements yet. Someone said they're going to release a film series by Kazuhiko Yamaguchi, so that should be either Sister Street Fighter, Delinquent Girl Boss, or the Oyama films.

Walcow also interviewed Sadao Nakajima, so perhaps Okinawa Yakuza War?

Bullet Train recently came out in the US.

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 15 Jan 2017, 12:11

Marc Walcow (the producer of the Wolfguy BD) summarized the film perfectly.

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- https://twitter.com/Patrick_Macias/stat ... 7340416000

That's actually exactly what happened in one of the 35mm screenings I attended a few years ago. A Japanese gent was sitting quietly till the end, but as soon as the ending kanji hit the screen he burst into uncontrolled laughter which echoed in the lobby and stairway for a good while as he left. I didn't go see, but I always imagined there was an ambulance waiting for him at the door that took him to a mental hospital. The film's greatness must have been too much for the poor fella.

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 11 Mar 2017, 06:44

Wolfguy transfer looks good so far:
https://twitter.com/outcastmarc/status/ ... 0979369984

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by HungFist » 18 Mar 2017, 03:31

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Never before released on video outside of Japan, Doberman Cop is a unique entry in the career of director Kinji Fukasaku.

Pre-order your copy in the UK: http://bit.ly/2nNbK9r
North American pre-orders links should be live soon!
Release Dates: 26/27 June

Released just as the popularity of yakuza movies was waning in Japan, and as the country's film industry was undergoing some fundamental shifts, Doberman Cop is a unique entry in the career of director Kinji Fukasaku (Battles Without Honor and Humanity, Cops vs Thugs), and reunited him with star Shinichi "Sonny" Chiba (The Street Fighter, Wolf Guy) in an American-style crime movie that mixes gunplay and pulp fiction with martial arts and lowbrow comedy to create one of their most entertaining films.

Based on a popular manga by "Buronson" (creator of Fist of the North Star), Doberman Cop follows the fish-out-of-water adventures of Joji Kano (Chiba), a tough-as-nails police officer from Okinawa who arrives in Tokyo's Kabuki-cho nightlife district to investigate the savage murder and mutilation of an island girl who had been working as a prostitute. Initially dismissed as a country bumpkin (complete with straw hat and live pig in tow!), Kano soon proves himself a more savvy detective than the local cops, and a tougher customer than anyone expected. As he probes deeper into the sleazy world of flesh-peddling, talent agency corruption and mob influence, Kano uncovers the shocking truth about the girl, her connection to a yakuza-turned-music manager (Hiroki Matsukata), and a savage serial killer who is burning women alive.

Made to appeal both to the youth market with its biker gangs and popular music, as well as to old-time yakuza movie fans, Doberman Cop is an surprising oddity in Fukasaku's career, his sole film adapted directly from a manga and never before released on video outside of Japan. Featuring Chiba at his charismatic best — channeling a Japanese Dirty Harry while doing all his own stunts — and Fukasaku at his most fun, deftly showcasing the combined talents of his "Piranha Army" stock company of actors and other regular players — Doberman Cop is a classic action comedy and a missing link in 1970's Japanese cinema deserving of rediscovery.

•High Definition digital transfer
•High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentations
•Original uncompressed mono audio
•Optional English subtitles
•Beyond the Film: Doberman Cop, a new video appreciation by Fukasaku biographer Sadao Yamane
•New video interview with actor Shinichi "Sonny" Chiba
•New video interview with screenwriter Koji Takada
•Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Chris Malbon

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s book featuring new writing on the films by Patrick Macias

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Re: The Official Sonny Chiba Thread!

Unread post by Guro Taku » 18 Mar 2017, 12:41

I haven't watched that film since the Toei DVD came out ages ago. A definite upgrade for me if they don't screw up the transfer.

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