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Ichi: The Killer (2002)
"Koroshiya 1: The Animation Episode 0" (original title)

5.9
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 507 users  
Reviews: 9 user | 6 critic

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Title: Ichi: The Killer (Video 2002)

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Cast

Credited cast:
Bruce Aarons ...
Prison Guard (voice)
Holly Bobbit ...
Mother (voice)
Tristan Goddard ...
Tanabe (voice)
Margeaux Heartman ...
Midori (voice)
Jean Masters ...
Mr. Shiroishi (voice)
...
Kakihara (voice)
David Moo ...
Hirano (voice)
Sayaka Ohara ...
Midori (voice)
Michael Sinterniklaas ...
Chihiro Suzuki ...
Shinpachi Tsuji ...
Jijii (voice)
Tom Wayland ...
Kaneda (voice)
Buddy Woodward ...
Teacher (voice)
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Taglines:

Anime at its most extreme.


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

27 September 2002 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Ichi the Killer: Episode 0  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director of the live-action adaptation, Takashi Miike, stars as the pivotal character Kakihara. See more »

Connections

Followed by 1-Ichi (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
definitely NOT for kids, first off, and with its flaws, but I liked it in its demented way
23 February 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Keep this in mind: this isn't some of the slightly more sanitized Adult Swim material on Cartoon Network. Ichi the Killer Episode 0 is hardcore anime, meant for probably some of the sickest f****s digging around for whatever they can in the most gritty video bins in some dump of a store. In its 40 minute running time the filmmakers backtrack into the life of Ichi, the memorable sadist from Takashi Miike's film. It's basically all about Ichi coming back from repressed teenage years where he's got the mind of a six year old trapped in a body that's half psycho-libido, and half just psycho killer, the two merging most of the time. Ichi is, of course, trained this way, or rather controlled by forces that use him as a killing machine. But we also see a side to an anti-hero that we might never ever see, which makes him so much of a crazy bird that we almost try and move away from the screen as killings go on, loaded with harsh sexual connotations that would probably scar for life some small children if seen.

It's a violent, insane spectacle, filled with the kind of imagery that only comes out of a comic book that has the reputation to still shock in the 21st century. Lots of sick martial arts moments tinged with just that extra over-the-top belt of surreal mania, as Ichi cries and cries and grows aroused all the more from one killing to the next. I recommend it probably more to those who would already be seeking out anime that's a little more than what would usually be used to seeing; the drawbacks are kinda glaring for most though, including an overbearing soundtrack (sometimes used would have been alright, but this constant starts to take a toll on the narrative, and such awful techno-pop carp), and an ending that seems to cut short just as a whole other narrative seems to start up. It goes without saying I can't see why a show like this wouldn't be picked up - you'd need an exec with the guts of a Tarantino or, for that matter Miike, to see it through without damning the creators to hell and starting a religion to repress this trash. But as trash it is, there's some art stuck in the middle: abstractions done and fashioned as if out of the most deranged fever dream ever conceived in anime.


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