In a Nutshell. Mini reviews of movies old and new. Minimum words. No fuss. No spoilers. Occasional trout.

Friday, 17 July 2015

Retaliation (1968)

Hasebe reteamed with Jô Shishido just a year after Massacre Gun (1967) for another Yakuza tale. Jiro (Akira Kobayashi) is fresh out of prison and straight back into the world that put him inside in the first place. He gets wedged in the middle of a business deal between a greedy Yakuza clan and some poor landowners, with a young, fresh-faced Meiko Kaji lending support.
It’s a Samurai film at heart. The men fight with fists, knives and katanas; guns feature rarely. Hasebe places his camera at angles that mainstream directors wouldn't even take under consideration.
As is often the case with cult Japanese cinema it relies upon your willingness to engage with the character-driven plot before letting all hell break loose at the end. Does Hasebe manage to outdo Massacre Gun? Watch it and find out.

3 bloodied shirts out of 5

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