|Index||5 reviews in total|
The psychopath Arano (Kôji Chihara) arrives in Tokyo with a bag full of
knives with the intention of killing Yakuza. He gets close to the
smalltime gangster Kamijo (Onimaru), who was assigned by the old Yakuza
Boss (Akaji Maro) to kill the gangster Matsunaga (Tetta Sugimoto), but
he is not a killer.
When Arano kill two American drug dealers, Kamijo steals the boom box with drugs. But the young prostitute Alice (Rin Ozawa) convinces Arano to rob the drugs and travel with her to Fiji. When she disappears with the drugs, Arano begins his rampage against Yakuza.
"Poruno Sutâ", a.k.a. "Tokyo Rampage", is a stylish Japanese movie with pointless violence of the Japanese youth. The nihilist and alienated lead character has a confused motivation for his crime spree Yakuza is not needed but any development of the reason of his behavior. The graphic violence is very well choreographed and the special effects work. My vote is six.
Title (Brazil): Not Available
Those expecting a Takashi Miike-style extreme cinema take on the yakuza
will probably be disappointed. The film does have violence (and would
earn an R rating if released over here), but its really nothing worse
than most American outputs. "Pornostar" (still have no idea why they
chose that title) is an interesting psychological piece and youth
commentary as opposed to an action film (the American title "Tokyo
Rampage" is rather misleading also for these reasons). Its not in the
league of Miike or Chan Wook-park, but those into the new wave of Asian
cinema will enjoy it.
The film's main flaw is that, while I champion low-budget film-making, this seems a bit too impoverished at times. There are certain sequences that would've required a slightly bigger budget to work. In particular the gun shots are laughably fake. That doesn't detract however from this being an interesting and unique film. The plot itself is original, and while the main characters and themes aren't fully developed, all the minor flaws are forgivable because of how much talent Toshiaki Toyoda shows as a director. His sense of pacing is perfect (alternating between quick and slow when needed) and the cinematography has a few impressive shots. "Pornostar" is far from perfect and rather half-baked at times, but an interesting failure is always preferable to successful tripe. (7/10)
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The story is about this weird guy (I think his name is Arano) arriving in
Shibuya, Tokyo, who dislikes useless elements, thus eliminating them. He
never quite defines the term useless (in fact he hardly talks at all), but
yakuza (Japanese Mafia) seem to fit in there pretty clearly.
Funny though how the yakuza admire him for his courage rather than hate him for his gangster-killing.
The film starts out rather well. The first scene in which the main character is introduced is great (watch it on a big screen and turn up the volume). The character is truly unique, not completely cool (he acts rather clumsy falling down again and again trying to learn how to skate), but definitely cold. The actor fits just perfectly, at least as far as the facial expression is concerned. But somehow the film slows down towards the end, not that it got boring, the first half was just somewhat better.
Still, it's a good movie. I have yet to find out what the title has to do with the story.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Still don't get why it's title "pornostar". The talking female characters seemed all wishing for a "love" trip to Fiji. Does the director tries to hint us they are drug addicts somehow? That girl in bed seemed not able to understand the guy was on the phone and the other girl seemed quite sincere when talking about selling the acid but ended up using it herself...(i disagree she was a prostitute like suggested in an earlier post by someone) The stabbing scene in the garage was indeed very brutal. Interesting to note that he pulled out the yellow envelop in 1 piece :) The message from the filmmaker was very clear and i enjoyed it.
This film is very slow, it's about a disillusioned youth that prowls around
killing Yakuza. There isn't really a plot, just critisism of the society
that Japanese youth grows up in. There is strong symbolism in the film, but
I found it quite hard to understand all the time.
I think there are films who deal with this subject better, never the less the film is worth seeing.
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