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

 -  Crime | Drama | Romance  -  20 March 1998 (USA)
7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 18,715 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.

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Title: Fireworks (1997)

Fireworks (1997) on IMDb 7.9/10

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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
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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


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Details

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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

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Japanese title translates into 'Fireworks", but if you look further into the basis of the Japanese character for 'fireworks', you will see that it is composed of two smaller words - 'fire' and 'flower'. And like the linguistic basis of the title, the story and style of "Hana-Bi" is the synthesis of two opposing images, one being an agent of destruction, and the other a symbol of birth and renewal. See more »

Quotes

Miyuki, Nishi's wife: Thank you - thank you for everything.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jam Session (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Kitano's Masterpiece!
19 January 2007 | by (Salzburg, Austria) – See all my reviews

Takeshi Kitano's "Hana-bi" aka. "Fireworks" of 1997 is a sad, funny, violent, melancholic, brilliant film, an absolute masterpiece which is, in my opinion, one of the best movies of the 90s. Hardly ever have I seen a movie which is this memorable and unique in both its tragic and its funny moments, as it is the case with this ingenious work of art.

I am a big fan of director Takeshi Kitano, who also stars in the leading part (as 'Beat' Takeshi) in this, and "Hana-bi" is my personal favorite of his movies.

Yoshitaka Nishi (Kitano) is a mostly calm, but occasionally irascible and ultra-violent cop, whose wife Miyuki (Kayoko Kishimoto) is terminally ill of leukemia. After his partner Horibe (Ren Osugi) is wounded, and another police officer is killed, Nishi decides to quit his job at the police and spend more time with his dying wife. In order to help Horibe, who is now in a wheelchair, and the dead police officer's widow, and in order to make the remaining time as comfortable as possible for his wife, Nishi, who also owes money to the Yakuza, needs money and he is determined to acquire it.

There is no doubt in my mind that Takeshi Kitano is an absolute genius, which he has proved by writing and directing this masterpiece. But not only is Kitano a genius as a writer and director, his acting performance in "Hana-Bi" is also uniquely superb and one of a kind. Nobody else could have played the role of Nishi with such brilliance as 'Bito' Takeshi Kitano, who rarely says a word in the first half of the film and is (nevertheless or therefore) absolutely impressive in his role of the cop with the constant poker face, which typical for Kitano. By the way, the impressionist and very original pictures which are shown occasionally throughout the movie were also painted by Kitano himself.

The rest of the acting is also great, Ren Osugi delivers a particularly memorable performance as Horibe, Nishi's partner who is struck by fate and has to live in a wheel chair, and Kayoko Kishimoto is great in the lovable role of Nishi's dying wife.

An absolute genius as a writer, director and actor, Takeshi Kitano is without doubt one of the greatest cinematic multi-talents alive, as far as I am concerned he is one of the greatest cinematic multi-talents who have ever lived. "Hana-bi" is arguably his greatest film.


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