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Thread: Glory to the Filmmaker! The 'Beat' Takeshi Kitano thread

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    Glory to the Filmmaker! The 'Beat' Takeshi Kitano thread

    Just because he doesn't have his own topic thread yet, I figured I'd create one for him. I'm guessing the general populace hereabouts are fans of Takeshi Kitano? Though he's Japanese, Takeshi is one of the few actors/directors from that country that I will always try and religiously watch...as the man's something of a genius, and a bit off the planet for that matter. Ever since I saw Violent Cop...



    ...I knew I'd picked a winner. The man just makes films like no-one else I know. However, I missed a few steps of recent years and Glory to the Filmmaker!...


    Glory to the Filmmaker DVD @ DDDHouse

    Achilles and the Tortoise...

    Achilles and the Tortoise DVD @ DDDHouse

    ...and Outrage...

    Outrage DVD @ DDDHouse
    Outrage Blu-ray @ DDDHouse

    ...all managed to fly under my radar! Has anyone seen them and can comment? I'd like to know if the old boy is still up to the fine work he's (largely) always managed.

  2. #2
    Administrator Ian Jane's Avatar
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    Yeah, there are a few recent entries of his I haven't caught up with, I think the last one I saw was Takashis, which was flat out weird but in a good way. I love his early gangster movies but his post Zatoichi (a film I didn't care for) stuff hasn't really pulled me in the way his earlier stuff did.
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    Administrator Ian Jane's Avatar
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    Oh and I count both Violent Cop and Sonatine as some of the best Japanese films of the last twenty years.
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  4. #4
    Glad to see that horrible, awful, useless Zatoichi movie he did wasn't listed.

    I wanna punch him for that. Seriously. In the face. He'd probably appreciate it, too.
    It's not going to suck itself...

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    Butthorn Roderick's Avatar
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    I actually thought Zatoichi was okay, but then again that was the last of Beat's pictures I checked out so maybe it had a subliminal effect.

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    Administrator Ian Jane's Avatar
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    I had such high hopes for it and I seriously did not enjoy it at all - it just went so wrong, and it still bugs me that it did, because the potential was pretty massive.

    He redeemed himself with Takashi's though.
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    Jeez, I love Zatoichi! It's obviously not a very reverent take on the story, as evidenced by that last joke just before the end credits, and anyway...the big dance number at the end was just totally out of nowhere as well as so typical of Takeshi. I really liked Takeshis' too. How many other filmmakers send themselves up so mercilessly?

    On the boxset side of things: I have just read (one of those getting-harder-every-passing-day-to-trust-internet-disc reviews) that the set are all standards conversions. But I'll let everyone know for certain when I get the box, since it's already shipped.

    Mind you, the last time I read that a Japanese set were all standards conversions was on the Female Prisoner Scorpion boxset I picked up cheapomundo a short while back (thanks for the recommendation there Ian, they were awesome). I figured, maybe they're right as Eureka are British, and that = PAL, normally. But guess what when I received the boxset? Yep, all three discs were in fact NTSC -- there was no standards conversion at all. I think someone there was talking out of their arse, as they couldn't tell the difference between PAL and NTSC (even though a press of your TV remote will tell you!), and since the discs ran the same times as the US editions they just assumed they were standards conversions. Weak...sauce...

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    Administrator Ian Jane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T View Post
    Jeez, I love Zatoichi! It's obviously not a very reverent take on the story, as evidenced by that last joke just before the end credits, and anyway...the big dance number at the end was just totally out of nowhere as well as so typical of Takeshi.
    Don't get me wrong, I like the unpredictability of so much of his work, that's what makes him an interesting filmmaker, but this time around it just didn't click with me. I felt it was forced, and while I think they did a good job getting the look right, the tone and pacing was scattershot and, yeah, as you say, irreverent. He didn't need to ape Shinataro Katsu's series completely, but neither did he need to throw in a dance number just for the sake of being wacky. I didn't hate it as much as I did the first time when I revisited it a few years ago, but I still don't care for it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Jane View Post
    Don't get me wrong...
    You just don't like song and dance numbers in Chanbara films! I bet you would if it was Chiba, though.

    But seriously...no, that's fine. Nobody ever has to justify their tastes to me ever. We all like different things, and that's what makes this such a great forum. I respect your thoughts, you respect mine, and everyone just agrees to disagree where there's not common ground. Cool with me: you didn't like it, I did -- doesn't make one of us right and the other wrong. But it's cool to read the motivations and machinations behind some opinions some times. You get an idea how people tick that way...or tok...tik tok tik tok...



    Hahahaha! And that's my little bit of Takeshi unpredictability for the day!

  10. #10
    Administrator Ian Jane's Avatar
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    Next you're gonna dye your hair blonde, Mike.

    I think with Zatoichi though, it was that I really wanted to like it. Love it even. I was so stoked to check that out that I ordered the HK import DVD as soon as it was available and I remember getting it and basically running to the TV player ready to nerd out over what had to be the best movie ever - and then wondering what the fuck had happened.

    On a semi-related note, you ever see any clips from his TV show in Japan, Takashi's Castle? There are youtube clips around. It looks amazing.

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