Two New York cops get involved in a gang war between members of the Yakuza, the Japanese Mafia. They arrest one of their killers and are ordered to escort him back to Japan. In Japan, however, he manages to escape. As they try to track him down, they get deeper and deeper into the Japanese Mafia scene and they have to learn that they can only win by playing the game the Japanese way.Written by
Harald Mayr <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Yûsaku Matsuda's last film role. Matsuda knew he had bladder cancer and that his condition would be aggravated by acting in the movie. He elected to do so anyway, unbeknownst to director Ridley Scott, reportedly saying, "This way, I will live forever." On November 6, 1989, less than seven weeks after the film's American premiere, Matsudo died of his bladder cancer at the age of 40. The film is dedicated to his memory. See more »
Towards the end of the movie, Nick shoots a hole in a bed sheet hanging on a clothes line, but the pre-cut hole is visible before it is shot. See more »
Quite frankly, my main reason to watch Ridley Scott's "Black Rain" was the fact that it features the great Tomisaburo Wakayama in one of his last roles, as a Yakuza Boss. Wakayama is best known for playing Ogami Itto in six "Lone Wolf and Cub" ("Kozure Okami") films, all of which are personal favorites of mine, from 1972 to 1974. Wakayama, who died in 1992 (the film is from 1989), is always a very convincing reason for me to watch a film. Otherwise I did not expect too much. I am not the biggest fan of Michael Douglas, but he was a good choice to the role of the burned-out cop with an anger issue he plays here. Andy Garcia is good as usual, and the film furthermore stars prolific Japanese character actor Ken Takakura, who very good as a Japanes cop. And everybody knows that Ridley "Alien" Scott is a more than capable director. The film is entertaining, and yet I cannot say I was satisfied with it. Douglas plays Nick Conklin, a scruffy American Cop who goes to Japan in order to bring a Yakuza assassin to justice. He is accompanied by his younger friend and fellow cop Charlie (Andy Garcia). The two did not expect to get caught in a war between Yakuza gangs however... That's all fine, and so is the action, but the film maintains to provide an aspect that I hate: "Black Rain" is simply so damn stereotypical that it hurts. The two American cops, Nick a rough-and-ready tough guy, Charlie a womanizing young fellow, are both really 'coool', whereas the Japanese characters are entirely stereotypical, duteous but pedantic and exaggeratedly submissive to bureaucratic rules. The constant stereotypes that are yelled at the viewer at every opportunity are really annoying and lessened my enjoyment of the film quite a bit. Otherwise, the story is decent enough (though by no means original) and the action entertains. Tomisaburo Wakayama, is, of course, great as always. My advice: In case you wanna watch films about the Yakuza, watch Japanese ones.
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