A Japanese Yakuza gangster is exiled to the United States. Takeshi settles in Los Angeles where his younger, half brother lives and finds that although the turf is new, the rules are still the same as they try to take over the local drug trade. Written by
Impressed with Europeans' interest in the yakuza, Takeshi Kitano wrote what he described as an old-fashioned yakuza film. To greater contrast the character against more familiar elements, he set it in a foreign country, choosing Los Angeles as a place-holder. When producer Jeremy Thomas asked Kitano if he was interested in foreign productions, Kitano told him about the script. Thomas promised him complete creative control, which Kitano said he got. See more »
Ken takes the photo of the potential blackmail victim with his right hand while his left hand is on the table. In the close-up he's holding it with both hands, and then he returns the picture with his right hand while his left hand is on the table again. See more »
I love you Aniki! Wherever you at, man!
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"Brother" makes the "Godfather" trilogy look like a kindergarten Christmas production. Kitano is definitely glorifying gratuitous violence, I am sorry to say it but it's true. He's smart and chic enough to know that he could be making wonderfully poetic films for the artsy crowd but perhaps he wants to offend on purpose. However, he ends up making beautifully directed odes to brutality in which japanese contemporary society appears only as backdrop against the vicious and callous homicidal maniacs obssessed with serial killing. Here, Kitano ,expatriated in LA, quickly manages to practically wipe off entire Cholo (Chicano) mob population: dozens of bodies mowed left and right with an aide from three inept street hustlers (one of whom is his americanized half-brother)... Of course, "Brother" does have Kitano's trademark scenes even if not nearly as elaborate as those in "Sonatine" or "Fireworks": a brief long-shot scene at the beach and a GREAT roof scene with the paper airplane...LOOK, OF COURSE, FOR SOME CHOPPED FINGERS ETC.
I am perhaps rambling a little. It shows you how ambivalent my feelings about Kitano in fact are. On one hand I like him a lot and consider him a rarely gifted film maker. In fact, one of the finest. On the other hand I deeply deplore his basic premises: death and misogyny. I can't make up my mind. I keep wanting to stay away from his films and I end up seeing them one after another. A strange experience for me.
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