Ichi The Killer
"I love this shit. It's all about guilty pleasure and pure, demented entertainment."
- Mighty Peking Man
Ichi The Killer (2001)
AKA: Koroshiya 1; Koroshiya Ichi
Director: Takashi Miike
Writer: Akiko Funatsu, Dai Miyazaki
Cast: Tadanobu Asano, Nao Omori, Shinya Tsukamoto, Pauline Suen (Alien Sun), Susumu Terajima, Toru Tezuka, Kee, Suzuki Matsuo, Jun Kunimura, Hiroyuki Tanaka, Yoshiki Arizono, Masataka Haji, Moro Morooka, Hideo Sako, Sakichi Sato, Shun Sugata
Running Time: 115 min.
Plot: One day, Boss Anjo of the powerful yakuza group "The Anjo Group" vanishes, together with one hundred million yen. In fact, Boss Anjo was assassinated by the killer Ichi, with the bloodbath masterminded by Jijii. Kakihara, a member of the Anjo Group, orders his crew to search for the boss, basically turning the town upside down. With the help of mysterious club hostess Karen, Kakihara gets closer to finding Jijii's hired killer Ichi...
Availability: This title is available at HKflix.com
MIGHTY PEKING MAN'S REVIEW: Jesus Christ! Up to this point, this is my third venture into the ultra-morbid world of director Takashi Miike ("Audition" and "Fudoh - The New Generation" being the other two films of his I've seen). This guy is FUCKING insane! His writers are FUCKING insane! Japan is FUCKING insane! Universe Laser & Video Co. is FUCKING insane! Excuse my language, but after sitting through a film like "Ichi The Killer", words like "fuck", "shit", "cock" and "pussy" become very "PG". Bondage, decapitation, gore, rape, beatings, drug-use, torture...you name it (I surely won't!), it's all here, and there's a lot to go around. And check this out, the version I saw has been cut by approximately 13 minutes. I scratch my head and ask myself, "What could have possibly been cut that's more fucked up than what I've seen in this version?". Why don't we just say that the uncut version isn't exactly on my must-see list. Seriously, I'm satisfied. I doubt seeing a few more minutes of a screaming, bloody prostitute being beaten and raped will change my opinion of the film.
As negative as the above paragraph may sound, it really isn't. I love this shit. It's all about guilty pleasure and pure, demented entertainment. A Takashi Miike film is definitely this kind of experience. It amazes me how this guy can put these kinds of situations and images on screen, take credit for it, and be proud of it. I, like every artistic mind out there, have had some pretty disgusting shit floating in my head BUT there is no way I'd share it or put it down on paper or film to share with others. Miike seems to live for it. Hell, I'd pay money to see his mother's facial expressions while watching one of his films for the first time. It's been exactly two days since I've seen "Ichi The Killer", and I still can't get it out of my mind.
Like "Fudoh - The New Generation", "Ichi The Killer" resembles a live-Anime with it's exaggerated violence and over-the-top, colorful characters.
Ichi himself is best described as an armored Power Ranger-type, especially with that big "1" embedded on his back. His main weapon is a big-ass blade that pops out of his boot. This weapon would easily give Wolverine's Adamantium Claws a run for their money. During one scene, Ichi completely slices a guy in two pieces vertically and perfectly. The funniest thing about Ichi is the fact that he cries like a baby as he murders the "bullies", which is reminiscent of the "Crying Freeman" manga. What's even more bizarre, is he plays videogames and rides around on his bike when he's not slaughtering his prey. Only in a Takashi Miike film.
Other characters include Kakihara, the weird looking guy with bleached hair who'd fit perfectly in a Marilyn Manson video. Not only is the guy an S&M freak, but he's also a mutant. Not literally, he just about qualifies as one. How many guys do you know smoke out of their cheek? Better yet, how many people do you know unrelease piercings off their cheek that allow their mouth to open wide enough to engulf a whole hand Pac-Man style? Also by Kakihara's side is Karen (played WONDERFULLY by Hong Kong's Pauline Suen aka Alien Sun). Like Kakihara, she's also into that S&M shit. She's a hot slut that helps Kakihara track down Ichi. She also has a crush on Kakihara, despite his homosexual love for his boss. Only in a Takashi Miike film.
Like "Audition" and "Fudoh - The New Generation", you have to see this movie to believe it. It won't take long for your eyes to open wide either, cuz some of the sickest moments occur before the main title sequence ends.
Time for communion.
MIGHTY PEKING MAN'S RATING: 7.5/10