Friday, June 13, 2008

The Yakuza

Okay, I'm a long-time Robert Mitchum fan. That sleepy-eyed look, the laconic drawl, the bust for marijuana, in like 1948, when nobody but jazz musicians smoked dope, gotta love a guy like that. Mr. Noir himself, and a tough guy to the end.

In the mid-70's, Mitchum, along with Tanaka Ken, starred in a Leo/Paul Schrader/Sydney Pollack movie called The Yakuza. It is the best contemporary samurai movie ever made, hands-down, no question.

I won't give any of the plot away, which is fairly convoluted in spots, but it concerns what the Japanese call giri, and when I first saw it, I was amazed.

It's not a chick flick. If you are a man and haven't seen it, rent it. You won't be sorry.

4 comments:

Ed said...

Steve - Thanks for the movie rec. I liked it. Eiko's "Brother" also I think played in Mr. Baseball and Black Rain - he was good. I was hoping Oliver was going to put down the cute little kitten (it looked like a little Yeti - cute) and use some of his weapons - Oh well --"stop it..stop it...." and poor Dusty - the only thing worse is they could have run him through and through with that long and I mean long sword type weapon on the wall -- ouch! I would have liked to have seen Mitchum take a machine gun instead of the elephant/shotgun to the big fight or any of the fights. Anyway very nice sets and the Japanese sceenary in the background in shots was very nice too. The Hunted with Christopher Lambert- I know, I know - he actually does a pretty good job in it. It is kind of interesting a bunch of mixing of Japanese themes with Chinese actors but I liked it anyway - check it out - the guy playing the Samurai does a neat job. Thanks again.

Michael B. said...

Definitely a bad ass flick...Mitchum was whooping ass in this one...Brian Keith Played well to.

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

So does this mean chicks won't like it, even if they like Robert Mitchum and old movies?

- Yours Sincerely,
A chick who likes flicks.

Steve Perry said...

My definition of chick-flick matches pretty much the one given here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/
wiki/Chick_flick

The examples they use are Beaches and Terms of Endearment, among others. Not to say that men can't go to them, as they often considered a good date movie, which is slightly different, but that the focus in such pictures is usually emotional and not action-oriented.

Lot of three-hanky pictures are chick flicks. And vice-versa.

There are women who enjoy a good bloody samurai film, of course, but how women express their feelings and how men do are often quite different.

Read Lonesome Dove and you see how men deal with their emotions -- or at least how they did until recently. Same guy who wrote that wrote Terms of Endearment, so he's really good.

The Yakuza is about love and sacrifice and honor, but from a male viewpoint. Which tends to mean they don't talk about it it all that much.