Achingly cool. Suzuki's jagged narratives are an acquired taste but I enjoyed this more than Branded To Kill which I found dizzying on first viewing. Loopy and gorgeous in parts with a rapturous use of colour. This one is going to get repeat viewings.
The movie has enough style and personality to inspire five generations of filmmakers, even the narrative itself becomes more of an aesthetic element than a guide to the story. To me this is a brilliant and a rather misunderstood film.
A candy coated take on yakuza conventions in this strange blending of genres from Seijun Suzuki that didn't quite live up to its reputation for me Amazing use of the wide screen form and a spectacular swath of colour didn't quite make up for the dispassionate performances or sense of parody.
Like Douglas Sirk more jaded than ever and on acid doing a Yakuza noir - And even a bit of Western thrown in, I'd say. Sometimes the effect is more jarring than is helpful to a viewer trying to keep track of what's going on. I didn't grasp everything the first time, I'm pretty sure, but there is mastery abound - this much, I am sure of. Could go up to four stars eventually.