Kinji Fukasaku

Kinji Fukasaku – Jakoman to Tetsu aka One-eyed Captain and Tetsu (1964)

Plot:
In a village subsisting on its herring fishery, a one-eyed criminal named Jakoman terrorizes the inhabitants. One of them, the son of the head of one of the fish companies by the name of Tetsu, decides to overthrow Jakoman and his cohorts.

(Remake of a 1949 movie of the same name directed by Senkichi Taniguchi written by Akira Kurosawa and starring Toshirô Mifune) Read More »

Kinji Fukasaku – Kataku no hito AKA House on Fire (1986)

Adapted from the autobiographical story by Kazuo Dan which was published a few months before his death, House Of Fire tells story of a popular writer sharing his complicated life with his family, his numerous mistresses and his work. Read More »

Kinji Fukasaku – Kamata kôshinkyoku AKA Fall Guy (1982)

Kamata kôshinkyoku (1982)
Quote:
The English title Fall Guy is fitting – this is a film about a stuntman who takes several plunges for his movie star friend – but there’s a clever touch of subversion in the less obvious Japanese title. Kamata Koshin-Kyoku refers to Shochiku studio’s theme song. But this film about the production of a samurai epic on the Toei studio lot in Kyoto is hardly a fawning tribute to the world of cinema. It’s a film by Kinji Fukasaku. Like the director’s masterpiece, Battles Without Honor and Humanity, Fall Guy exposes the injustices visited on honest, hard-working men serving corrupt and undeserving bosses; all he has done is change the setting. In the place of low-ranking yakuza are stuntmen, the foot soldiers of the entertainment industry. In the place of Japan’s criminal underground is a movie set. Read More »

Kinji Fukasaku – Odoshi AKA The Threat (1966)

IMDb comments:
You can watch this crime drama as a sort of Japanese DESPERATE HOURS. A just married ordinary man has his family held as hostage by three hoodlums who want him to do something for them. Get a big package of money from his boss, and not a Yakuza. This is not a yakuza movie, folks, but a true suspense film, a bit far from what Kinji Fukasaku used to show us. A tale told with a terrific nick of time pace, with splendid editing and simple filming skills. The main lead character, the poor man who is lost in the city because he knows that he must obey to what the gangsters ordered him to do, this man’s play is so convincing. I was not lucky enough to see it with subtitles, and I am sure I unfortunately missed a lot. But I followed the basic scheme anyway. I would have imagined Koji Tsuruta as the husband’s character. A golden gem that deserves to be seen at all costs. Read More »

Kinji Fukasaku – Kamikaze yarô AKA Kamikaze Man: Duel At Noon (1966)

An elaborate criminal tango based around treasure hidden during WWII.

Write-up by sketchesofcinema:
Sonny Chiba and Kinji Fukasaku head to Taiwan in this international action thriller influenced by spy films and Hitchcock movies. Chiba is a playboy pilot who is mistaken for someone who he isn’t after witnessing a murder in ski centre. The other witness is a Taiwanese lady who is vacationing in Japan. Chiba agrees to fly her back home, but as soon as they land they run into gangsters who are searching for a lost WWII treasure and believe Chiba is the key to finding it. Read More »

Kinji Fukasaku – Jingi no hakaba AKA Graveyard of Honor (+Extras) (1975)

Quote:
Set during the turbulent post-war years, Fukasaku’s original 1975 film charts the rise and fall of real-life gangster Rikio Ishikawa (Tetsuya Watari, Outlaw Gangster VIP). Shot through with the same stark realism and quasi-documentarian approach as Fukasaku’s earlier Battles Without Honor and Humanity, Fukasaku nonetheless breaks new ground through his portrayal of a gangster utterly without honor or ethics, surviving by any means necessary in a world of brutal criminality. Read More »

Kinji Fukasaku – Omocha AKA The Geisha House (1998)

Set in the late 1950s, when geisha culture was threatened by moral crusades, it tells the story of Omacha (Miyamoto Maki), a young girl who sees the geisha life as a way to lift her poverty-stricken family from their hand-to-mouth existence. Through her eyes, we see the protocols and complex financial relationships which dictate the running of the geisha house. Fukasaku’s film is a work of great delicacy with moments of hypnotic beauty, and his tender direction, often touched with a sense of wonder, fills the screen with lovingly constructed scenes. At its heart is the poignant situation of the women who must sacrifice their normal relationships to live an ambiguous life in which they are a key part of society while being kept, for the most part, on its periphery, like perpetual mistresses. Read More »