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As sadomasochistic yakuza enforcer Kakihara searches for his missing boss he comes across Ichi, a repressed and psychotic killer who may be able to inflict levels of pain that Kakihara has only dreamed of.

Director:

Takashi Miike

Writers:

Sakichi Satô (screenplay), Hideo Yamamoto (manga)
6 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tadanobu Asano ... Kakihara
Nao Ohmori ... Ichi (as Nao Ômori)
Shin'ya Tsukamoto ... Jijii
Paulyn Sun ... Karen (as Alien Sun)
Susumu Terajima Susumu Terajima ... Suzuki (as Sabu)
Shun Sugata Shun Sugata ... Takayama
Tôru Tezuka Tôru Tezuka ... Fujiwara
Yoshiki Arizono Yoshiki Arizono ... Nakazawa
Kiyohiko Shibukawa Kiyohiko Shibukawa ... Ryu Long (as Kee)
Satoshi Niizuma Satoshi Niizuma ... Inoue
Suzuki Matsuo Suzuki Matsuo ... Jirô / Saburô
Jun Kunimura ... Funaki
SABU SABU ... Kaneko (as Hiroyuki Tanaka)
Moro Morooka ... Coffee Shop Manager
Hôka Kinoshita Hôka Kinoshita ... Sailor's Lover
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Storyline

When a Yakuza boss named Anjo disappears with 300 million yen, his chief henchman, a sadomasochistic man named Kakihara, and the rest of his mob goons go looking for him. After capturing and torturing a rival Yakuza member looking for answers, they soon realize they have the wrong man and begin looking for the man named Jijii who tipped them off in the first place. Soon enough Kakihara and his men encounter Ichi, a psychotic, sexually-repressed young man with amazing martial arts abilities and blades that come out of his shoes. One by one Ichi takes out members of the Yakuza and all the while Kakihara intensifies his pursuit of Ichi and Ichi's controller Jijii. What will happen as the final showdown happens between the tortured and ultra-violent Ichi and the pain-craving Kakihara? Written by Joseph

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Ai wa, kanari itai. (Love really hurts.) See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong perverse violence/gore and sexuality, language and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Japan | Hong Kong

Language:

Japanese | Cantonese | English

Release Date:

25 July 2002 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

Ichi the Killer See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,400,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$20,285, 1 April 2018
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (heavily cut) | (heavily cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As a publicity gimmick, barf bags were recieved by viewers out at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) to those attending the midnight screening of this movie. Similar bags were given during the Stockholm International Film Festival. Reportedly watching this film caused one viewer to throw up and another to faint. See more »

Goofs

When Kakihara is attacked in the streets, protective padding is visible under his clothing. Look for it when he bends over backwards without falling over, before he removes his piercings. See more »

Quotes

Kakihara: Damn... Nobody left to kill me.
See more »

Crazy Credits

End credits scroll up, down, left, right, forwards and backwards. See more »

Alternate Versions

List of cuts to Hong Kong theater & DVD release:
  • 2 Graphic shots of needles jammed through "hooks" victim, one through the cheek and the the other up through the chin. Close up of grease scalding victim and horrific 2nd grease pouring (over the head!) An additional 3rd needle is then jammed into his chest!
  • Bloody close up's of the "tongue cutting".
  • All of the drug lady's fingers are broken off, not only one!
  • 2nd rape features additional punch to the face as well as shots of pimp thrusting into her. As pimp's body splits in half, there is additional shot (and classic sound effect) of his entrails pouring out. When Ichi slices the girl after killing the pimp, she turns her head to the side and a huge gash open's spraying blood as she thrusts around the room.
  • Extreme close up of "tv set" victim's eye socket.
  • Additional shots of "cheek pull" including excited looks between Kakihara & the girl.
  • The bloody face slides all the way down the wall after flying out of the room.
  • Scene of Kakihara picking up a string of guts and admiring it.
  • Long scene in which the thug saves Ichi from a beating and remember's his own beating. They then eat a meal together.
  • Horrific close up of kidnapped girl's nipples being pulled out with clamps and then sliced off with a knife! The later kicking of this girl goes on much longer.
  • During blowjob in apartment, earlier throat slicing is again cut from Ichi's flashback. Foot cutting is the same as H.K. but final slash to the throat in the hallway is much longer with more blood.
  • Close up shots of victim of "needle throwing". Same victim has his arm graphically ripped off.
  • Throat cutting on the rooftop is much longer with geisers of blood.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Rpik (2015) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
A Miike Masterpiece
20 July 2006 | by Alien_I_CreatorSee all my reviews

Ichi the Killer is a landmark picture in Japanese Cinema. It is an audio and visual attack on the senses (and gag reflex) which adopts a unique style of movie/comic book- hybrid film making. A real Miike masterpiece!

Kakihara is not your typical Yakuza gangster. He is sadistic, masochistic, depraved, has a hair trigger for violence, and is really really upset that someone has kidnapped his boss, Anjo and taken off with 100 million yen. So, torturing his way through the underworld, he manages to get kicked out of the Yakuza and finds out, too late, that it was a man called Ichi that killed his boss and is now after him. Kakihara then sets out for revenge and vindication in the name of Anjo.

Ichi, on the other hand, seems to be a more simple kind of guy who works for an ex-cop who loves to wreak havoc on the Yakuza. Ichi's work is thought to be that of a brutally insane and blood thirsty maniac. But, upon meeting him, one can't help but notice his peculiar innocence and naiveté. However, it is this very feature that makes him so deadly.

When these two forces collide, it's endless violence, torture, rape, murder, blood, gore, and underworld danger and depravity. Ichi the Killer is a movie that directors like Quentin Tarantino only dream of making. If films were people, his Kill Bills would only watch and drool at Ichi the Killer!


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