Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Film Review: Outrage Way of the Yakuza (2010)

Outrage: Way of the Yakuza (Review)
Japan/2010
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: Yes

 "...I'm more than content with what is offered."

Tension rises within the Sanno-kai crime syndicate as Ikemoto and his relationship with a rival gang is questioned. Otomo (Kitano Takeshi), one of Ikemoto's subordinates, is given the task of severing those ties, but not all is what is seems in the yakuza...

Outrage: Way of the Yakuza continues with twists and turns at every corner. Corruption, loyalty, and betrayal play a major role in each character's motives. But, that's the way of the yakuza, (ya know, like the title of the film? no?), and Otomo and his family are caught in the middle. The story not only introduces you to the way of the yakuza (I did it again), but it also brings you an viciously entertaining plot. The third act of the film is pure tension with some unforgettable executions -- the ending of the film fits well with the themes, and it gives just enough closure to keep you satisfied until the next one.

Outrage: Way of the Yakuza manages to be a bit more than a typical gangster film. Yes, it has a few stereotypes and clichés, but it doesn't takes itself too serious. There are more than a handful of intentionally humorous moments, albeit darkly humorous. The executions in this film are violent, graphic, and consistent. In fact, there is one scene about tongues that has been stitched into my memory since I first saw Outrage over a year ago. Aside from the cringe-worthy violence, the film works well off its tense and heated encounters, as well as its twist-filled and engaging plot.

Kitano Takeshi, or Beat Takeshi, is fantastic as the lead -- he plays the old-school yakuza very well with a calm and collected performance with some nicely added humor. The rest of the cast is equally impressive. The music is well-fitted and even unique for the genre. The film is also shot well. It's not strong on special effects, but most of the effects and makeup are great; I believe there may be some computer generated blood, but it's well-executed. Takeshi Kitano is incredibly precise with his direction, and his writing is also great -- occasionally, the storytelling can be confusing, but it mostly translates well.

Overall, Outrage: Way of the Yakuza is a great crime thriller. It's very violent, darkly humorous, and immensely entertaining and interesting. I wished the film delved a bit more into the Yakuza lifestyle, but I'm more than content with what is offered.

Score: 8/10
Parental Guide: Strong violence and blood, brief sex and nudity.

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