Tough gangster Ryuichi and his ethnically Chinese yakuza make a play to take over the drug trade in Tokyo’s Shinjuku district by massacring the competition. But he meets his match in detective Jojima, who will do everything to stop them.
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It's sad that the opening sequence where we know zero about any character or have a context for the action is more interesting than the proceeding 'actual' storytelling. When it's without action and strangeness, Miike loses his footing. Despite Lynchian moments and the brilliantly staged action scenes, they come too sporadically, while the film lacks in momentum to be good trash, and in intellect to be anything but.
This movie has an opening that will melt your face, burn your eyes, and leave you shaking in awe. It has an ending that will blow your mind all over the wall behind you, leaving an icky mess for someone to clean up. Everything in between is best described with the words "boring as fuck."
The opening montage is the most impressive thing about Miike's first 'Dead or Alive' film. For all the film's depravity and mondo ending the overall feeling watching this one was boredom. A terrible performance by Riki Takeuchi only adds to the problems. Miike has made some very impressive films over the years...this isn't one of them.
The film doesn’t differ from most Japanese movies dedicated to yakuzas and anti-yakuzas police forces if one forgets Takashi Miike’s taste (superbad, I may say) for hyperviolence, gore, scatology and other candies. Recommended.
It seems like an intentional mess that takes action, family drama, pornography and mashes them together, but each segment feels disjointed and not fully developed. Because of that, indifference is the main impression that is given until the end. And then, everything changes to something for which "larger than life" comes of as an understatement. One can wonder what would it be if the rest of the movie was like that.