Monday, November 9, 2015
Battle Royale (2000)
IMDb plot summary: In the future, the Japanese government captures a class of ninth-grade students and forces them to kill each other under the revolutionary "Battle Royale" act.
Directed by Kinji Fukasaku. Starring Tatsuya Fujiwara, Aki Maeda, Tarô Yamamoto, and Takeshi Kitano.
(Spoilers ahead for the premise of the movie.)
Watched this with Jacob as part of the Letterboxd season challenge, and whoo! This was a tough one. This is no Hunger Games YA adventure. This is brutal and dark and these kids seem every bit as young as they're supposed to be. The comparisons to Tarantino's work is interesting, because it's a very different tone. While Tarantino feels light and over-the-top in his violence, this is dark and gritty and too realistic to be funny. It doesn't all quite tie together at the end (the final 10 minutes aren't entirely worth the horror of the first 90), but it's a fascinating ride, as we slowly learn the personalities and back stories of some of these 40+ students, as well as the teacher who's keeping them captive. It's not an easy watch, but it's one that will certainly sit with you.
How it entered my Flickchart:
Battle Royale > The Circus
Battle Royale < The Red Violin
Battle Royale > Extraordinary Measures
Battle Royale > Mr. Deeds Goes to Town
Battle Royale > sex, lies, and videotape
Battle Royale < The Boondock Saints
Battle Royale > The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes
Battle Royale < Porco Rosso
Battle Royale > The Manchurian Candidate (1962)
Battle Royale > Were the World Mine
Battle Royale < Zoolander
Final spot: #645 out of 2387.