IMDb > Sabu (2002) (TV)

Sabu (2002) (TV) More at IMDbPro »


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6.7/10   334 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Hiroshi Takeyama (screenplay)
Shûgorô Yamamoto (novel)
Contact:
View company contact information for Sabu on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
14 May 2002 (Japan) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
Other People Don't Matter
Plot:
When a young man is sent to a prison workhouse for a crime he did not commit his friend on the outside must find evidence to clear his name. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
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NewsDesk:
(2 articles)
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 (From Twitch. 15 April 2010, 1:25 PM, PDT)

Takashi Miike’s Thirteen Assassins Remake Moves Forward
 (From Screen Rant. 12 May 2009, 10:04 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Superb Historical Drama See more (9 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)

Tatsuya Fujiwara ... Eiji

Satoshi Tsumabuki ... Sabu
Tomoko Tabata ... Onobu
Kazue Fukiishi ... Osue
Kenji Sawada ... Okayasu
Naomasa Musaka ... Matsuda
Tatsuo Yamada ... Ryojiro Kojima
Yoshiki Arizono ... Yohei
Keisuke Horibe
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ken'ichi Endô ... Giichi
Mayuko Nishiyama ... Osono
Ren Ohsugi ... Heizo

Hiroshi Tamaki ... Kinta
Yôji Tanaka ... Toku
Akira Yasuda
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Directed by
Takashi Miike 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Hiroshi Takeyama  screenplay
Shûgorô Yamamoto  novel

Original Music by
Kôji Endô 
 
Cinematography by
Hideo Yamamoto 
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Masato Tanno .... first assistant director
 

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Additional Details

Runtime:
122 min
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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful.
Superb Historical Drama, 20 April 2005
Author: Oskado from Kingman, Arizona

I find myself comparing this to the French miniseries, "Compte de Monte Cristo", and to "Manon des Sources - Jean de la Florette". Sabu, too was apparently produced for TV, and I admire the audience and director/producer/art director that permitted such a work to come to light. This is not a work produced for the lowest common denominator.

The photography - the palette - the attention to small historical details, to nature, to emotions is fine.

But I think of structure - ideas like exposition, rising action, peripetie, moment of final tension, denouement - and of Compte and Manon - and the French works seem more selective in their focus, as though examining a small group (the key parties to the action) under a microscope. Each fully. The good and the bad have their reasons, their views of life. Rising moments of tension are interspersed or silhouetted against pastoral moments or even comic or rustic relief.

Here, in Sabu, I sometimes felt the scenery stole the show - i.e., that the action or development stalled. I sometimes felt the focus was confused - that more attention should have been given to Osue, Sabu, Onobu - and certainly more to Roku and to the old fellow prisoner who is so supportive.

But I don't suggest Sabu fails to expose and delicately develop a host of characters - it does, but leaves us wanting more. And I sense a certain ideal "ratio" between the length of the film and the height and depth of its emotional swings has been violated. In Sabu, I find the rise and development of such moments too lengthy, or too understated to support the film's overall length in full dramatic fashion.

Still, there are wonderfully moving and touching moments, people we wish we could know better, even a growing understanding of a society and a time in history. Characters who appear cruel become sensitive and supportive, characters who appear innocent have their failings, and there's nature and fate and a possibility of achieving true happiness through resignation. Its world may be more accommodating than that of Manon.

I highly recommend this film. Despite weaknesses it's thought provoking. It's beautiful. It's humanist. I'll rate it a 9.

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