Battle Royale.

Directed by Kinji Fukasaku
Produced by Kenta Fukasaku, Kimio Kataoka, Chie Kobayashi, Toshio Nabeshima
Based On The Novel By Koushun Takami
Screenplay By Kenta Fukasaku

"At the dawn of the millennium, the nation collapsed. At fifteen percent unemployment, ten million were out of work. 800,000 students boycotted school. The adults lost confidence, and fearing the youth, eventually passed the Millennium Educational Reform Act - AKA: The BR Act..."

The most horrifically pleasing film I have seen in a long while. I’ve wanted to see it for sometime and after lent it by a friend I can say it was worth the wait.

First of all, it is subtitled [I’ve been lent a video (y) but I’m sure the DVDs you can buy have varied subtitles/aids, but you’ll have to check before purchasing], but after 10 minutes you forget about them as you get drawn in within the brilliantly directed and written story before you.

“Here’s a list of those who copped it this morning.”

Turns out, sanity can really be lost when your life is at risk.

It slowly builds up to the story, but I think it starts so brilliantly, with what appears to be a news report of the last game. A reporter is pushing forward, trying to get a glimpse of the winner, a girl; and she’s smiling. Already we see the twisted insanity needed to win this game,

The concept is simple. After 3 days upon an island, you must have killed everyone else; if you’re the only one left, you win & live. If more than one of you lives, you all die. Easy? You better not believe it.

Definitely not the most ‘family friendly’ film, but perfect for those who like a bit of drama in the reality sense. There’s no magic brooms, no evil elves, no vampires murdering each other, it’s realistic, and possibly, that’s why some find it scary. Personally, I didn’t find the film terrifying, but then again I have yet to find a horror film that does, yet my sister refused to watch after viewing no more than 10 minutes during the middle at some point.

I can guarantee it’s worth the 114 minutes of your life [or just over 120 minutes if you’re viewing one of the director’s cut editions]. Sure, there are amusing parts, well…one I can recall so well involving a scene with a bullet proof chest, forgetting all the overly dramatic deaths, but, don’t just take my word for it.

“The odd plot hole doesn't seem to matter. With more than 40 contestants in the deadly game, this is a heart-stopping action film, teaching us the worthy lessons of discipline, teamwork, and determination, but wrapping them up in a deliberately provocative, shockingly violent package. With children killing each other, this is one foreign language film which is unlikely to secure a Hollywood remake.” “ Jason Korsner [BBC]

“Battle Royale is a powerful, blood red barrage of a film. Its strengths are undeniable, its weaknesses few. In the winter of his career, Fukasaku is still provoking. And he's succeeding more than ever.” “ Jason Mes [Midnight Eye]

The trailer…yet it does not do the film justice.
Posted on May 7th, 2008 at 03:21pm


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