For five years, film critic Scott Tobias compiled "The New Cult Canon" in a regular column for The A.V. Club…
Ichi the Killer
Love really hurts.
As sadomasochistic yakuza enforcer Kakihara searches for his missing boss he comes across Ichi, a repressed and psychotic killer who may be able to inflict levels of pain that Kakihara has only dreamed of.
Takashi Miike Revisited (#4)
"If you're going to give someone pain, you've got to get into it!"
There was once a time where if you told me Ichi the Killer was available for rent at Blockbuster, I would have looked you in the eye with confidence before calling bullshit and laughing over how much of a dipshit you must think I am. Flash forward a couple years later and I am the one in the wrong.
Revisiting Ichi the Killer was a throwback to a time when I was most uneasy with Miike. I had watched this, Dead or Alive and Shinjuku Triad Society all around the same time, all depicting extreme brutalization of women, so much that Miike was…
..........what the hell did I just watch?
And why exactly did I like it so much?
Sometimes I worry me............
There's no love in your violence.
The manga Ichi the Killer, by Hideo Yamamoto, is an ultra violent comic book featuring deep psychologically disturbed characters doing all sorts unimaginable acts to all sorts of people. You give the live action adaptation to genre favorite, director Takashi Miike, and you either get giddy as a school girl about what is going to transpire or you get nervous about what your brain is about to be exposed to.
To be fair about Takashi Miike, his North American reputation doesn't accurately reflect his body of work. While his more controversial films are the ones that are mostly brought over to North America and get all the attention, Miike as a director dabbles…
I'm not typically a fan of über -violent fare. It seems to me that usually the violence is just for violence's sake and does nothing to propel the narrative or develop the characters. Takashi Miike's Ichi the Killer can appear to border on those lines at times, but if you look closer, there's usually an underlying purpose behind the director's bloodlust. This is a devilishly funny and immensely entertaining [and surprisingly smart] script, which features wonderfully fleshed-out characters and a unique premise. The performances are solid, especially Tadanobu Asano as "Kakihara" who is hot on Ichi's trail, and the direction is stylish and paced well. But make no mistake, there are buckets of blood [and other bodily fluids] in this film, and the extreme amount of violence and overtly sexual content put a ceiling on just how much I was able to truly "enjoy" this film. It is certainly not for the faint of heart. I'm looking at you, anne_f_.
Another film with semen in it by Takashi 'Watch How Many Films I Can Squeeze Out in a Year' Miike. Yeah dude, we get it. You're edgy and modern. And stuff.
As messy as the guts it spills, Takashi Miike's manga adaptation of the same name, Ichi the Killer arguably however concocts a cohesive critical approach without really giving any answers. Other than the heavy impact violence featured heavily throughout and the manipulated memories some of the themes may be hidden behind a few meters of intestines.
The violence is typically cartoon-like and could easily represent a criticism, especially in Japan in regards to the increasingly easy access to violence, gore and splatter through popular mediums such as manga and cartoons (Anime) - considering Ichi the Killer is based on a manga, it is particularly ironic. The last few scenes in particular embody this particular idea for me. Whilst Ichi the…
Visceral is a term that I find overused and often unwarranted in it's commonality, but there is no better term to describe Ichi the Killer. Every moment of brutality and violence is an attack against the audience's senses; when Kakihara removes his tongue, you will writhe in pain. I found my body warm throughout this tale. I felt every vein coursing with blood.
Extremely violent and gory, really psychotic characters, frenetic atmosphere, disturbing moments, black comedy and sadism. One of the best gore films I have ever seen, with a good plot and an ending that makes you take your own conclusions. Call me crazy but the sadomasochistic yakuza, Kakihara, steals the show as this crazy sort of anti-hero (How can you defeat a guy who enjoys pain?). Ichi is also a rare "villain" that I will never forget. Extremely brutal and definetly not for everyone but I enjoyed it.
Raw, gritty and intense, Ichi The Killer is a film that will surely make you uncomfortable from the moment the film starts. This is an intense film, one that you cannot tear yourself away from, in other words this is the type of film that dares you not to look away. With a blend of horror and crime film elements, this film is an intense viewing experience that you won’t forget anytime soon. The cast do a fine job in their roles and if you’re looking for a truly disturbing film, Ichi The Killer is such a film to watch. Overall, this is a decent film, one that is designed to shock its audience in the most extreme way, and…
Mezcla entre torture porn, cine de yakuzas y Mortadelo dirigido por un proto Quentin Tarantino, esta película tiene todo tipo de salvajadas violentas, desde las que te despiertan una sonrisa por lo infantilmente extremo, hasta otras que te llenan de incomodidad (con lo educado que parecía este señor en persona en el festival de Sitges el año pasado).
Por desgracia, aunque tiene elementos aprovechables, en general Miike todavía está en una frase temprana de su filmografía, y parece todavía más interesado en mostrar barbaridad tras barbaridad, que en contar una historia que te atrape (como consigue, por ejemplo, en Imprint o Hara Kiri: Muerte de Un Samurai) o en arrancarte unas cuantas risas (como logra en Ace Attorney o Zebraman).
En resumen, sólo para incondicionales del autor. Lo mejor, el personaje de Kakihara, que podemos ver en el poster de la película: un asesino a sueldo sadomasoquista y adicto al piercing que enorgullecería al mismísimo Joker de Ledger y Nolan.
Takashi Miike presents his most auspicious and bombastic ultra-violent cult film to date. A mix of comedy, crime, and horror that not only revels in the bizarre, it lives and breathes it. Despite excellent direction the film struggles with it's narrative and tone. Is it a sly satire of the Japanese BDSM subculture? An exploitation film? The blackest comedy of all time? The truth lies somewhere in the middle of all three. It won't appeal to everyone, but Ichi the Killer is a labor of love from start to finish.
Well... this is a glorifying piece of shit. Before I go on my mini rant, I will say that the film has some really impressive and influential direction, cinematography, and a killer soundtrack along with some decent performances. Now, Ichi the Killer is one of the few films to truly disgust me with the character's actions and the execution of the brutally graphic violence. This is a gangster film first and foremost. Although it attempts to be something more psychological with a certain character, it comes off as lazy and uninspired unlike the crime segments causing the film to run overlong. Ichi the Killer needed a better editor. By the time the film's first hour came around, I was already…
One of my favorite movies of all time. Ultra violence as a form of expression.
With very unconvincing effects, characters who aren’t given the full arcs they should have, and acting that doesn’t hold up to the style, Ichi—while interestingly bloody—leaves a lot to be desired.
Depends on what you're after. Seriously lacking in the psychological nightmares of Audition, but filled with an orgiastic, humorous display of arterial absurdity. There's just too much of a comical dimension in order to find something profoundly disturbing here. I won't deny there's still plenty to enjoy. Whether you want the dahlia-pierced, facially scarred, tongue-bifurcated, bleach-blonde haired Kakihara causing gleeful mayhem or the more customary-looking, timidly shy yet equally unsettling Ichi filling rooms with intestines - it's all pretty fun and graphic.
Honestly, I started to really like the film when it slowed down from all of that and began to explore Ichi. His bullying history, sexual desires, and general depiction of violence against women made for a fine commentary…
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