After more than four hundred years of war between the Shinobi warriors of the Manjidani Koga and Tsubagakure Iga clans, the Lord Hattori Hanzou decrees that they must live in peace. Both ... See full summary »
Set in a future-world vision of Tokyo where the police have been privatized and bitter self-mutilation is so casual that advertising is often specially geared to the "cutter" demographic, ... See full summary »
An unknown time. An unknown place. Without reasons. With no future. His only desire is... Destruction! Death Trance combines the themes of good versus evil, and the awakening of an unlikely... See full summary »
Full-throttle splatter-ific Japanese cyberpunk science fiction/horror at its most aggressive, this mind-blower about alien parasites that turn their human hosts into slave "Necroborgs" will leave you dizzy and drained - in a good way.
Yoshie, the younger and ill-treated sister of a renowned Geisha, is discovered to have natural strength and fighting ability. She's recruited into an army of Geisha assassins by the rich ... See full summary »
This movie is based on the second and fourth cases in the popular video game Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney. The plot follows Phoenix Wright, a novice lawyer, who faces off against expert ... See full summary »
BE A MAN! SAMURAI SCHOOL is a very fun little film from first-time director (and martial arts sensation) Tak Sakaguchi. Set at a hidden academy that teaches wimps how to be men (think of a low-rent Hogwarts), the first half of the feature follows a group of ragtag freshmen who can't seem to go seconds without getting their butts kicked by the near-tyrannical faculty. Then, when an old expelled student returns and demands that the school be given over to him, the freshmen must band together, save their school, and become men.
The premise is silly, but BAM!SS certainly has its heart in the right place. It pulls no punches about what it is, and constantly tosses the audience a self-referential wink when things occasionally become rough. Playing on Japan's infatuation with machismo, the feature pokes fun at social constraints and stereotypes while remaining fun throughout.
The acting, at times, is a little wooden and a few of the side stories could have very easily been jettisoned in favor of a bit more action, but overall, there are very few complaints. When the s*it hits the fan in the second half, we're given a very solid revenge story - coupled with some genuinely funny humor. A well-placed kick to a bear's head is a very funny piece, as is a cadet's attempt to lift an un-liftable flagpole.
While it may not appeal to a lot of US audiences, BAM!SS will certainly find a niche in the States and gather plenty of fans. Writer/director Sakaguchi has proved himself not just a formidable force in front of the camera, but now also behind it.
Go ahead, enroll in SAMURAI SCHOOL. Its a lot of fun.
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