MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 3,179 this week

Fireworks (1997)
"Hana-bi" (original title)

 -  Crime | Drama | Romance  -  20 March 1998 (USA)
7.9
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.9/10 from 18,682 users  
Reviews: 106 user | 95 critic

A police officer leaves the force in the face of harrowing personal and professional difficulties. Spiraling into a depression he makes questionable decisions.

Director:

Writer:

0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 24 titles
created 18 Aug 2012
 
a list of 48 titles
created 06 May 2013
 
a list of 46 titles
created 11 Jun 2013
 
a list of 42 titles
created 9 months ago
 
a list of 45 titles
created 8 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Fireworks" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Fireworks (1997)

Fireworks (1997) on IMDb 7.9/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Fireworks.
22 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Brother I (2000)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A Japanese gangster is exiled to Los Angeles where his brother lives with a small but respectable multi-racial gang, who he inspires to expand their influence.

Director: Takeshi Kitano
Stars: Takeshi Kitano, Claude Maki, Omar Epps
Revanche (2008)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Ex-con Alex plans to flee to the South with his girl after a robbery. But something terrible happens and revenge seems inevitable.

Director: Götz Spielmann
Stars: Johannes Krisch, Irina Potapenko, Andreas Lust
Read My Lips (2001)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

She is almost deaf and she lip-reads. He is an ex-convict. She wants to help him. He thinks no one can help except himself.

Director: Jacques Audiard
Stars: Vincent Cassel, Emmanuelle Devos, Olivier Gourmet
Badlands (1973)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

An impressionable teen girl from a dead-end town and her older greaser boyfriend go on a killing spree in the South Dakota badlands.

Director: Terrence Malick
Stars: Martin Sheen, Sissy Spacek, Warren Oates
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Charlie Kohler is a piano player in a bar. The waitress Lena is in love with him. One of Charlie's brother, Chico, a crook, takes refuge in the bar because he is chased by two gangsters, ... See full summary »

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Charles Aznavour, Marie Dubois, Nicole Berger
Breathless (1960)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A young car thief kills a policeman and tries to persuade a girl to hide in Italy with him.

Director: Jean-Luc Godard
Stars: Jean-Paul Belmondo, Jean Seberg, Daniel Boulanger
Heaven I (2002)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A woman takes the law into her own hands after police ignore her pleas to arrest the man responsible for her husband's death, and finds herself not only under arrest for murder but falling in love with an officer.

Director: Tom Tykwer
Stars: Cate Blanchett, Giovanni Ribisi, Remo Girone
Mona Lisa (1986)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

George has just been released from prison, and manages to get a job driving a call girl from customer to customer. Initially they don't get on; he doesn't fit in with the high class customers Simone services. Will they ever get on?

Director: Neil Jordan
Stars: Bob Hoskins, Cathy Tyson, Michael Caine
Action | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Convicted felon Nikita, instead of going to jail, is given a new identity and trained, stylishly, as a top secret spy/assassin.

Director: Luc Besson
Stars: Anne Parillaud, Marc Duret, Patrick Fontana
Summer of Sam (1999)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Spike Lee's take on the "Son of Sam" murders in New York City during the summer of 1977 centering on the residents of an Italian-American South Bronx neighborhood who live in fear and distrust of one another.

Director: Spike Lee
Stars: John Leguizamo, Adrien Brody, Mira Sorvino
Match Point (2005)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

At a turning point in his life, a former tennis pro falls for a femme-fatal type who happens to be dating his friend and soon-to-be brother-in-law.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Scarlett Johansson, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Emily Mortimer
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A recently laid off factory worker kidnaps his former boss' daughter, hoping to use the ransom money to pay for his sister's kidney transplant.

Director: Chan-wook Park
Stars: Kang-ho Song, Ha-kyun Shin, Doona Bae
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Yoshitaka Nishi (as 'Beat' Takeshi)
Kayoko Kishimoto ...
Miyuki, Nishi's wife
Ren Ohsugi ...
Horibe
Susumu Terajima ...
Nakamura
Tetsu Watanabe ...
Tesuka
Hakuryû ...
Yakuza Hitman
Yasuei Yakushiji ...
Criminal
Tarô Itsumi ...
Kudo
Ken'ichi Yajima ...
Doctor
Makoto Ashikawa ...
Tanaka
...
Tanaka's widow
Tsumami Edamame ...
Businessman Throwing Rocks
Yûrei Yanagi ...
Chef #1
Sujitarô Tamabukuro ...
Chef #2
Tokio Seki ...
Old Hick
Edit

Storyline

Nishi is a cop whose wife is slowly dying of Leukemia. One of his partners gets shot on the job and is confined to a wheel chair for the rest of his life and becomes suicidal. Nishi, feeling guilt over his partners accident, tries to help him in any way he can. At the same time, Nishi leaves the police force to spend more time with his dying wife. However, in order to do the right things for those he loves, Nishi must do wrong things. Spiraling deeper into desperation and slowly building up to tragedy. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 March 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Fireworks  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$59,508 (USA) (20 March 1998)

Gross:

$233,986 (USA) (10 April 1998)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Girl playing with kite, featured in the final scenes of the film is Takeshi Kitano's real-life daughter, Shoko Kitano. See more »

Quotes

Horibe: Work is all I've ever known.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jam Session (1999) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A breath of fresh air. It's rare poetry -- a sentient piece with unflinching strength. MUST SEE for film appreciation buff.
9 May 1999 | by (sf, usa) – See all my reviews

It's lyrical poetry: sensitive, eloquent, visual, hard and soft edges simultaneously, and sparing dialog. There's no need to tell all -- all is conveyed in the paintings presented, in the words spoken by supporting characters, in facial expressions and gestures. It's minimal -- nothing's gratuitous. The story is told mostly visually, unhurried, not even a hold-up scene -- that feels leisurely, too.

It's a story about a cop, miles apart from Hollywood commercial productions. The treatment writer-director Kitano delivered is unlike any seen before. The central character, Nishi, he has guts to live or to die. "He's a darn good cop," Horibe his partner confirmed. (Horibe, whose poignantly restrained performance by Ren Osugi, is more than just a supporting role in the film). Nishi has two close partners: one (Tanaka) died in action and left a widow, the other crippled in action and confined to a wheelchair. His wife Miyuki (a wonderfully quiet performance from Kayoko Kishimoto) is in the hospital; she's been ill for two years; their daughter died earlier. These details are given to us through casual conversations from supporting characters and flashback memories reflecting Nishi's constantly attentive mind in spite of his mostly blank face.

He's a caring man. But when he is ignited, incensed by injustice or anyone's action or words that get in his way, his reaction is the other extreme of his subdued gentleness inside: an unhesitating steady strike or continuous multiple blows, or "emptying his bullets into a corpse." He has a lot of pent-up emotions ready to explode. Nishi is an honorable man; he felt responsible for the misfortunes that occurred to his two partners. Perhaps it's guilt; he has to do something to amend the situation. There are crime depictions, including Yakuza related segments. His physical reactions to thugs are unflinching to the point of brutal yet they are essentially graphic -- at times in powerful silence.

He's a pensive man -- we can tell he's constantly thinking. There are occasional comic relieving pauses: we see him taking a moment and even breaking into a smile, e.g., when he beckons to play ball with the two workers on the street while at a stake out; his brief exchange with the junkyard owner was revealing. It's all paced in good measure.

It's a quiet film yet strong and deep, filled with human frailties and vulnerable situations. The relationship between he and his wife is beyond words. There are little mutual gestures between the two of them -- so much is expressed silently. Sometimes it's straight to the point short questions from Nishi to his wife -- and this could be delivered to us in voice-overs. The camera gives us serene scenic landscapes: seaside view with a horizon -- waves rolling in being a repeated theme; snow scenes; a temple with a big bell and a few wandering cats. It also embraces the paintings and still lifes (e.g., a wooden puzzle game and two dessert plates on a table), giving us deliberate meaningful close-ups. In HANA-BI, silence speaks louder than effects of any kind.

The film touches on aspects of life and living -- relationships of working partners, husband and wife, and being human. It's a canvas Kitano thoughtfully creatively painted on film -- broad strokes, little poignant details here and there, vibrant solid colors and imageries. Words are sparse. Simple and yet not at all simple. It could be evident that perhaps he did it all for love? His love for his wife certainly shows. Throughout the film, his face seemed void of emotions -- hardly flinches -- and in the end, possibly a flinch or two did cross his face. Perhaps he's resigned to fate?

The music by Jo Hisaishi at times is reminiscent of European film scores, e.g., flowing tune following a car leisurely cruising along the seaside road at some Riviera of Italy or Southern France. It complements the story in soothing tempo from beginning to end. Kitano's "FIREWORKS" is in perfect cadence -- an excellent piece of film expression. A rare gem.


39 of 47 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Most beautiful movies christian-m-1
JAPANESE FILMS tinagull83
Greatest Takeshi film yet ? guch18
Favorite? Crabnebula1914
The woman at the restaurant... MrE2Me
soundtrack? CitizenSenior
Discuss Fireworks (1997) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?