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Branded to Kill (1967)

Koroshi no rakuin (original title)
Not Rated | | Action, Crime, Drama | 15 June 1967 (Japan)
After a badly done assignment, a hitman finds himself in conflict with his organisation, and one mysterious and dangerous fellow-hitman in particular.

Director:

Seijun Suzuki

Writers:

Hachiro Guryu (screenplay), Hachiro Guryu | 3 more credits »
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Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jô Shishido ... Gorô Hanada (as Joe Shishido)
Mariko Ogawa Mariko Ogawa ... Mami Hanada
Annu Mari ... Misako Nakajô (as Anne Mari)
Kôji Nanbara Kôji Nanbara ... No. 1
Isao Tamagawa Isao Tamagawa ... Michihiko Yabuhara
Hiroshi Minami Hiroshi Minami ... Gihei Kasuga
Hiroshi Chô Hiroshi Chô
Atsushi Yamatoya Atsushi Yamatoya
Takashi Nomura Takashi Nomura
Tokuhei Miyahara Tokuhei Miyahara
Hiroshi Midorikawa Hiroshi Midorikawa
Akira Hisamatsu Akira Hisamatsu ... (as Kôsuke Hisamatsu)
Iwae Arai Iwae Arai
Yû Izumi Yû Izumi
Kyôji Mizuki Kyôji Mizuki
Edit

Storyline

The number-three-ranked hit-man, with a fetish for sniffing boiling rice, fumbles his latest job, which puts him into conflict with a mysterious woman whose death wish inspires her to surround herself with dead butterflies and dead birds. Worse danger comes from his own treacherous wife and finally with the number-one-ranked hit-man, known only as a phantom to those who fear his unseen presence. Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese | English

Release Date:

15 June 1967 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Branded to Kill See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Nikkatsu See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Post-production was completed on June 14, 1967, the day before the film was released. See more »

Quotes

No. 1: This is how Number 1 works: first he exhausts you, and then he kills you.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Oldboy (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
So cool Jarmusch ripped it off
17 June 2001 | by charlietunaSee all my reviews

Seijun Suzuki refers to his films as "entertainment" and without critical merit. Yet, this was somewhat tongue in cheek as he stated that critics feel a movie must have a "moral or some social commentary" to be worthy of attention. Be that as it may, "Branded to Kill" is simply a fantastic achievement. Suzuki was working with both a lead man and a script provided to him by the Nikkatsu Corporation. As such, when you evaluate his films, you do so by focusing on the technical merits. Personally, I find his disconnected editing, and surreal lighting styles to be amazing. Suzuki's skill turns what is otherwise a laughable boiler plate film noir into something more. The lighting and editing make the exclamations that the script doesn't, and the decision to shoot the final scene in a boxing ring is brilliant.

It was entertaining to watch person after person jump up and down about the originality of "Ghost Dog" with no mention of the fact that Jarmusch lifted one of the assassination sequences unchanged from "Branded to Kill". Hopefully as more of Suzuki's work comes to DVD, people and critics alike will recognize a blatant tribute when it is given. Suzuki deserves them all.


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