10 user 13 critic

Sabu (2002)

When a young man is sent to a prison workhouse for a crime he did not commit his friend on the outside must find evidence to clear his name.


Takashi Miike


Yô Takeyama (screenplay) (as Hiroshi Takeyama), Shûgorô Yamamoto (novel)

On Disc

at Amazon


Learn more

More Like This 

Dead or Alive (1999)
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A yakuza of Chinese descent and a Japanese cop each wage their own war against the Japanese mafia. But they are destined to meet. Their encounter will change the world.

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Shô Aikawa, Riki Takeuchi, Renji Ishibashi
Izo (2004)
Action | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

An executed samurai takes an existential journey throughout time, space and eternity in search of bloody vengeance.

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Kazuya Nakayama, Kaori Momoi, Ryûhei Matsuda
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Raita, a Japanese businessman, just moved into an apartment building where his next-door neighbor is another guy named Raita. But as a private detective, what that other Raita does couldn't... See full summary »

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Kai Atô, Tomoharu Hasegawa, Pâko Hayashiya
Andromedia (1998)
Crime | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

After her sudden death a teenage girl finds her father has uploaded her mind to computer form. With a rival corporation wishing to capture her the girl is uploaded to her boyfriend's laptop.

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Hiroko Shimabukuro, Eriko Imai, Takako Uehara
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

People mysteriously start receiving voicemail messages from their future selves, foretelling their deaths.

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Ko Shibasaki, Shin'ichi Tsutsumi, Kazue Fukiishi
Waru (2006)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

A member of the Yakuza is imprisoned for violent behaviour including fighting another group of thugs. There he meets another man and the two become friends. Once released the friend is back... See full summary »

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Shô Aikawa, Keiko Matsuzaka, Ryo Ishibashi
Zebraman (2004)
Comedy | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A down-and-out school teacher receives the calling to become the real life personification of an old television superhero, Zebraman.

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Shô Aikawa, Kyôka Suzuki, Atsuro Watabe
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A star, Miyuki Goto (Ko Shibasaki) plays Oiwa, the protagonist in a new play based on the ghost story Yotsuya Kaidan. She pulls some strings to get her lover, Kosuke Hasegawa (Ebizo ... See full summary »

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Ko Shibasaki, Hideaki Itô, Ebizô Ichikawa
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A visually stylish tale of two male prisoners bonded by emotion, love and murder.

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Ryûhei Matsuda, Masanobu Andô, Shunsuke Kubozuka
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A barkeeper saves a Yakuza boss' life and thus makes his way up in the organization. However his fear of nothing soon causes problems.

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Ryo Amamiya, Narimi Arimori, Yoshiyuki Daichi
Full Metal gokudô (Video 1997)
Comedy | Crime | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

An inexperienced gangster is killed alongside his strong, respected boss and awakens to find a mad scientist has given him a new body made partly of his boss and partly of indestructible bionics.

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Tsuyoshi Ujiki, Tomorô Taguchi, Takeshi Caesar
Sun Scarred (2006)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Katayama (Aikawa Sho) is on the way home to his wife and little daughter when he stumbles on a gang of punks beating up an innocent man. Katamaya decides to help the stranger and ... See full summary »

Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Shô Aikawa, Aiko Satô, Ken'ichi Endô


Credited cast:
Tatsuya Fujiwara ... Eiji
Satoshi Tsumabuki ... Sabu
Tomoko Tabata Tomoko Tabata ... Nobuko
Kazue Fukiishi Kazue Fukiishi ... Osue
Kenji Sawada Kenji Sawada ... Okayasu
Naomasa Musaka Naomasa Musaka ... Matsuda
Tatsuo Yamada Tatsuo Yamada ... Ryojiro Kojima
Yoshiki Arizono Yoshiki Arizono ... Yohei
Keisuke Horibe
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ken'ichi Endô Ken'ichi Endô ... Giichi
Mayuko Nishiyama Mayuko Nishiyama ... Osono
Ren Osugi ... Heizo (as Ren Ôsugi)
Hiroshi Tamaki ... Kinta
Yôji Tanaka Yôji Tanaka ... Toku
Yujiro Taniyama Yujiro Taniyama


A tale set in the Tokugawa Era. Framed for a crime he did not commit, Eiji is subjected to the harsh realities of the Ishikawa Island workhouse. Sabu, Eiji's longtime friend, must discover who is responsible for Eiji's incarceration, before the prison life consumes him completely. Written by blaza

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

jidai geki | based on novel | See All (2) »


Other People Don't Matter


Action | Drama







Release Date:

14 May 2002 (Japan) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs



See full technical specs »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Mixed feelings
29 December 2003 | by simon_boothSee all my reviews

First things first, this isn't a Samurai movie as it is sometimes advertised. It's a period film set in the time of the Samurai, but the main characters are just normal folk. I might also mention that despite the film being named after the character Sabu, it spends almost the whole time focussed on his friend Eiji (played by Tatsuya Fujiwara of Battle Royale fame).

It's hard to recognise the influence of director Takashi Miike here, as it features none of his usual over-the-top madness. However, it's another film that shows the director to be capable of far more than just shocking the audience with violence.

However, I still reckon it amongst the weakest of 20 or so Miike films that I've seen. As a drama it's quite well made, but I was left largely unmoved by it. I wasn't quite sure what message or feeling I was meant to take away, and after 2 hours I felt that I still didn't really know or understand the characters that well. It felt like we were just getting part of a larger story, and what we glimpsed wasn't enough to fully appreciate it.

That said, it was nice to see Tatsuya Fujiwara in a non-Battle Royale setting, though the film indicates as one might expect from one so young that his acting really isn't that great without Kinji Fukasaku and a strong screenplay behind him.

Overall, I feel that it's a film I could have appreciated more if I'd known up front what it was about (no Samurai!), but that I don't expect to watch again any time soon to find out.

7 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 10 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed