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Black Rain (1989)

R  |   |  Action, Crime, Thriller  |  22 September 1989 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 36,989 users  
Reviews: 114 user | 60 critic

Two NYC cops arrest a Yakuza member and must escort him when he's extradited to Japan.


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Title: Black Rain (1989)

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Yûsaku Matsuda ...
Shigeru Kôyama ...
Ohashi (as Shigeru Koyama)
Guts Ishimatsu ...
Yûya Uchida ...
Tomisaburô Wakayama ...
Miyuki Ono ...
Frankie (as Luis Guzman)
The Kid (as John A. Costelloe)


Two New York cops get involved in a gang war between members of the Yakuza, the Japanese Mafia. They arrest one of their killers and are ordered to escort him back to Japan. In Japan, however, he manages to escape. As they try to track him down, they get deeper and deeper into the Japanese Mafia scene and they have to learn that they can only win by playing the game the Japanese way. Written by Harald Mayr <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A Ridley Scott Film From The Producers Of "Fatal Attraction" See more »


Action | Crime | Thriller


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

22 September 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Lluvia negra  »

Box Office


$30,000,000 (estimated)


$45,645,204 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints) (4 channels)



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Jan de Bont replaced Howard Atherton as Director of Photography. Atherton shot most of the film, but he got so frustrated in Japan that he resigned. de Bont was then brought in to finish the rest of the film and received official credit; Atherton is credited for "Additional Photography." See more »


At the end where the plates of the $100 bill are shown under the shirt, it clearly shows the "1" of "100" next to the portrait of Franklin, but on the real $100 bill it's the last "0" of "100" next to Franklin. See more »


Nick Conklin: Just hope they got a Nip in this building who speaks fucking English.
Matsumoto Masahiro: [overhearing] Assistant Inspector Matsumoto Masahiro, Criminal Investigation section, Osaka Prefecture police. And I do speak fucking English.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The end credits begin with a Japanese kanji, which can be translated as "complete" or "end" and is sometimes used at the end of Japanese films. See more »


Featured in Black Rain: Post-Production (2006) See more »


By Ray Charles
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Ultra-moody cop fiction.
24 February 2007 | by (The Penumbra) – See all my reviews

I saw this film on crappy pan and scan VHS when I was about 12 and I didn't really understand it and I wasn't really up on Ridley Scott's work. As a result, the impact of the film was somewhat lost on me. I was expecting an action film instead of a character drama with lots of police procedure. But now, older and wiser and with a brand new Blu Ray of the movie, I am finally able to appreciate how clever the film is.

The story unfortunately IS riddled with 80s Cop Movie clichés and goes through quite a lot of familiar motions. But if you see past that you'll appreciate the immense atmosphere and mood that Ridley Scott piles on. Simply put, Michael Douglas is Nick Conklin, a bad cop (pretty much the exact same character in Basic Instinct) who drag races on his superbike to pay alimony and pinches drug money instead of turning it in for evidence. Enjoying lunch with partner Charlie (Andy Garcia) in a steakhouse in New York's meat-packing district, they just happen to witness a Yakuza execution by wanted Japanese criminal Sato (Yusaku Matsuda, who was dying of cancer during filming and didn't tell anyone). After a quick punch-up and shoot-out they find themselves chaperoning Sato back to Osaka. But when they arrive there he manages to escape, leaving them embarrassed with lots of questions to answer.

Nick and Charlie find themselves in a very foreign and intolerant world and recapturing Sato proves to be difficult in many ways. Not the least of which is Japan's alienating culture (from an NYPD point of view) and rigid rules. Nonetheless, Nick is determined to catch Sato and restore his honor.

Like I said, the atmosphere of the film is overwhelming, which is really all the film needs. The clichés and stereotypes don't matter so much when you are involved this much. Hans Zimmer (his first film with Ridley Scott) provides a deeply emotional and very melodic score that'll be rattling around in your head for days. It's a shame it's never had a comprehensive CD release, as it's one of Zimmer's most impressive efforts.

You could call it a pretty 80s movies, but I still do feel that it holds up pretty well today. As one of Ridley Scott's more forgotten works, it's well worth checking out.

50 of 53 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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