Takashi Miike’s ultra-violent cult film Ichi the Killer has endured as one of the most influential pieces of genre filmmaking of the last two decades, and now it returns in an all-new, all-stunning digital restoration approved by Miike himself.
“A wonderful poison apple of a gore movie … thanks to this new restoration, Japanese cult filmmaker Takashi Miike’s perversely funny, and unsparingly disgusting, genre-melting film now looks and sounds better than it has any right to.” – Simon Abrams, RogerEbert.com
This visceral, blood-soaked and often hilarious film, adapted from Hideo Yamamoto’s infamous manga, follows the insane adventures of Kakihara (Tadanobu Asano), a notoriously sadistic yakuza enforcer sporting blonde hair and a yawning, pierced slash for a mouth. Kakihara is no ordinary gangster, and his methods of “enemy dispatch” are equally unorthodox; he impales one poor suspect’s naked body on a series of meat hooks and then dumps hot oil on him! Kakihara’s boss has recently been murdered, and while he searches for the killer, a shadowy villain known as Jijii deftly manipulates, for his own nefarious purposes, Ichi (Nao Ohmori), a demented and ruthless killing machine clad in a garish superhero suit. Pining for the sadistic abuse of his boss, Kakihara learns of Ichi from a Hong Kong hostess and sets out to find this fabled butcher, hoping he can inflict the pain that Kakihara craves. (Dir. by Takashi Miike, 2001, Japan, in Japanese/Cantonese with English subtitles, 129 mins., Not Rated)