Detective Azuma is a Dirty-Harry style rogue cop who often uses violence and unethical methods to get results. While investigating a series of drug-related homicides, Azuma discovers that his friend and colleague, Iwaki, is supplying drugs from within the police force. After Iwaki is murdered and Azuma's sister is kidnapped, he breaks all the rules to dish out his particular form of justice. Written by
Todd K. Bowman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Kinji Fukasaku was originally slated to direct, but had to bow out when he discovered his lead actor could only be available for periods of ten days at a time due to television commitments. The lead actor Takeshi Kitano already cast as Azuma, offered the job after a joking reference to possibly doing it, took over the director's chair after heavily rewriting the script to remove all traces of comedy. See more »
Kitano cripples the senses and jars the nerves in his films. This is a movie about a two-fisted cop whose blunt face and cliff's edge personality drive every scene, even the ones Kitano is not in. Kitano's character is not reacting to a violent world, but infecting it with his own brand of violence. The "violent cop" has lost his hope, therefore he fears nothing.
Kitano as director gives us a real world of humor and interaction. Events happen, there's no plot. Every scene has this pulse that is raging, the characters even when still seem kinetic as sprinters. Punches, kicks, and bullets explode bodies. Kitano's character clashes with a psychotic hit man, but it is Kitano's cop who is out of control, unstoppable in his desire to inflict justice as he sees it.
There's scenes which cannot be forgotten: Kitano's cop
interrogates a punk drug dealer in a club rest room. These two actors go through a scene in which Kitano slaps this man over and over until he talks. The difference is that Kitano is really slapping this actor, and slapping living hell out of him. Cringe-worthy, and up there with one of the other scenes that illustrates what a hard man Kitano is: stabbed with a knife, Kitano grips the blade as it comes out of him, clinching his fist down on it so he cannot be stabbed again. Blood pours out from between his fingers, he cannot let it go because his fist and knife are one; Kitano understands the brutality of the fight, the reality of two men trying to kill each other, no quips, no words, no yells or curses, just blood and rage; cut to the bone, it's the way the whole film makes you feel.
As far as the recent BROTHER is concerned, it makes perfect sense for Kitano to use similar themes seen in his earlier films. BROTHER is Kitano's first real attack on American audiences. They, en mass, haven't seen his stuff, and if Kitano's going over old ground, he's doing it in HIS style. Better a retread Kitano than most of Hollywood's slobbering star-cramped idiocy.
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