The ScreenAnarchy curated Tokyo Drifters: 100 Years Of Nikkatsu
screening series continues at the TIFF Bell Lightbox this Saturday with a rare screening of Hasebe Yasuharui's Retaliation
. An early effort from a director who would go on to shape the pinky violence movement, this one features a young Kaji Meiko (Stray Cat Rock
, Lady Snowblood
) in a key role!
Two years before they collaborated on the immortal Stray Cat Rock
series, director Yasuharu Hasebe and soon-to-be-superstar Meiko Kaji
teamed up for this potent gangster flick that also stars the great Joe
Shishido (Branded to Kill) and Akira Kobayashi, who would shortly thereafter star in Kinji Fukasaku's epic yakuza series Battles Without Honor and Humanity.
Emerging from a stint in prison, yakuza lieutenant Sumukawa (Kobayashi)
discovers that his gang has disintegrated while he was in the pen. An
ambitious type, he quickly hooks up with another gang (led by Shishido)
who promise him a prominent position if he helps them deal with a rival
family. But bonds are made to be broken, and pledges of loyalty soon
give way to competition, betrayal and -- naturally -- retaliation. Tough,
cynical and violent, Retaliation cheerfully overturns
romanticized notions of underworld honour, paving the way for Fukusaku's
revisionist yakuza pictures of the 1970s.
Find complete series details and order tickets here!
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