Ichi the Killer: Masterpiece or torture porn?

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The_Cinephile
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11 Aug 2008, 12:22 pm

I just watched it the other day, and I totally fell in love with it.
I wasn't offended in the slightest by the brutal torture and violence, because of the yakuza context.
That's what those guys do in real life.
Seriously.

Still, I know a lot of people just see it as an exploitation film.
What'd'ya think?


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zebedee
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11 Aug 2008, 2:25 pm

Definately a masterpeice, I'm a big fan of Takashi Miike movies but this is an amazing peice of cinema - the acting is brilliant and it is definately not just torture porn.

If you like Tadanobu Asano (Kakihara) check out "tokyo zombie" where he shows he can play something other than a psycho killer.



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11 Aug 2008, 2:26 pm

I don't think it really fits into either category. I love the movie, but it's not a masterpiece. I generally put it in the same category as Battle Royale, just Japanese ultraviolent films good for weekend watching.



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11 Aug 2008, 2:35 pm

never even heard of it


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The_Cinephile
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11 Aug 2008, 10:01 pm

OK, let's not go dissing Battle Royale.
That's a totally original classic, with style.

But yeah, Ichi rules.
I'm reading the manga right now, and I have to say, the movie is better.
Kakihara is just so nonchalant about everything in the movie, but he's more of the kinda guy you'd expect to rip your arms off and eat them in the manga.


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ASandproud
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13 Aug 2008, 10:48 am

Absolute classic

But please, could somebody explain the final scene to me?



The_Cinephile
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16 Aug 2008, 12:39 am

Kakihara went crazy...and before he died, he hallucinated that Ichi killed the kid, when in fact he didn't.
This is because Kakihara sees Ichi as a monster, when he's really a total coward.
Once he believes this, he commits suicide in his madness.
On his way down, he feels his life is complete.
Then, Jijii is hung...possibly by the child.
You see him walk off in the end.

So basically, Kakihara wanted so badly to die by Ichi's hand that when he learned about who Ichi was, his mind couldn't take it, and had to compensate.


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16 Aug 2008, 3:04 am

It's not a bad movie. But it does make me sad.


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17 Aug 2008, 1:39 am

I believe something can be a masterpiece and an exploitation film. It can be a masterpiece at what it's doing. Consider "Oldboy." In my view it's as good as a film can get, yet it's extremely cruel, disturbing, and exploitive.

I haven't seen "Ichi the Killer," and I don't want to, but from what I've heard it sounds like a similar situation: very very good at being sadistic and perverse.



The_Cinephile
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18 Aug 2008, 12:51 am

Oldboy was amazing too.
Some great plot twists there.

I think I preferred Oldboy overall though.


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20 Aug 2008, 12:39 am

How does someone desensitize themselves to a point where this kind of film is considered entertainment? I ask because the last torture porn film I watched was Faces of Death (vol 1 or 2). Pretty much gave up on the genre as a whole because I simply couldn't handle watching graphic gore... real or fake.

By the way I do like horror (The Shinning), just not torture porn horror.


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20 Aug 2008, 10:47 am

can't it be both? surely if there's a torture porn genre it would have its masterpieces?

i don't consider ichi to be in the same category as battle royale (a classic; a wonderful adventure movie) or faces of death (trash).


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20 Aug 2008, 10:54 pm

Dark comedy.






But I'm a weird dude, so who knows?



The_Cinephile
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21 Aug 2008, 6:59 pm

Yeah, I've heard that, too.
I don't know, maybe it is a dark comedy.
In many ways, Psycho was too.
Hitchcock was amazing.


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The bats have left the bell tower
The victims have been bled
Bela Lugosi's dead
Undead undead undead
The virginal brides file past his tomb
Strewn with time's dead flowers
Bereft in deathly bloom
Alone in a darkened room