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 <email@example.com>
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 »
I'm Nito. Won't you come in?
Come in? A restaurant with dope-pushers and killers?
You know what I mean. Where's Kiyohiro?
Kiyohiro? Who's he?
Look ... if you want to question me, get a warrant first.
[Shinkai tucks a bribe into Azuma's jacket pocket]
[Nito peers closely.]
[...] See more »
There are no opening credits beyond the title. See more »
In which our hero stomps around town like a bear with a sore head, bitch-slapping everyone in sight.
Violent Cop was originally conceived as a comedy, before Kitano re-wrote it as a drama, fearing an international audience would miss the subtlety of his comedy acting. I'm not convinced it was completely re-written though - Kitano, accompanied by a theme tune that sounds like something out of Laurel and Hardy, deadpans his way through acts of casual violence, defying you to take it seriously. From head-butting a teenager in his bedroom, to repeatedly slapping a drug dealer in the toilets of a bar, to kicking the crap out of his own sidekick, the violence is unnecessary to the point of farce.
The film's plot is thin at best. Kitano plays Azuma, a poor man's Dirty Harry; a renegade cop dragged into a low-level corruption case involving a small-time dealer called Nito, whose supply line leads back to the police. The case, like Azuma's job, is incidental and he becomes embroiled in a personal vendetta with Nito's henchman, an equally sociopathic nut job. The film plays out as a classic revenge tragedy, amassing an impressive body count along the way. The characters are little more than cut-outs; a backdrop for the exposition of Azuma's psychosis.
While it's far from Kitano's best work - probably his worst in fact - the seeds of his unique visual style are sown in Violent Cop. But the still, lingering shots, interspersed with explosive violence, which would be used to such devastating effect in later films, are largely farcical here.
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