Tag Archives: Kinji Fukasaku

Battle Royale Review

Crazed governments and their accepted mania have made for a narrow, fascinating avenue of art. It is a worrying gaze to take on, but Battle Royale brought promise to the genre of shady governments pushing down on citizens who couldn’t do anything to stop them. Oppressive dystopias gone wild once again. Its terrors of compulsory education are made clear, and even then it manages to turn old and reliable friends against one another almost immediately. That is the tense brilliance Kinji Fukasaku brings to the screen here, a story of impressionable teens doing battle against one another. Their tense fight for survival reflects the fear adults have of their attitudes and their abilities as rebellious teens, and if this is what they can do to one another, then surely, they must fear what these teens can do to the generations above.

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Under the Flag of the Rising Sun Review

Cowardice is not as frequent within war movies as one would expect. It often lingers as a slight variation of fear, a gut feeling that a one-line extra will throw out there to give the hero a masculine bravado. Understanding the failure of military leaders from beyond a Western perspective is difficult, especially when so much of the Hollywood machine is focused on the heroics of America. Post-war filmmaking from the U.S.S.R in particular was a fascinating pocket of sub-genre brilliance, capturing the futility and fear present during the final days of fighting, and the immediate impact that followed. Under the Flag of the Rising Sun, a film from director Kinji Fukasaku, details the impacts the horrors of the Second World War and the poor leadership of Axis powers left on innocent bystanders, numbed by fear and gripped by a growing isolation. 

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