Battle Royale

Sat, Nov 21, 2015

2000, Dir. Kinji Fukasaku
With Tatsuya Fujiwara, Aki Maeda, and Takeshi Kitano
121 min, Digital Projection

This cult-classic, adapted from the 1999 Koushun Takami novel of the same name, follows a class of Japanese middle school students in a near future who are sent to a remote island and forced to fight to the death, until only one final student remains.  The last film by director Kinji Fukasaku (Tora! Tora! Tora!, Shogun’s Samurai, Battles Without Honor and Humanity) Battle Royale pre-dated the Hollywood blockbuster The Hunger Games by over a decade.  A smash success in its native country, where it was nominated for Best Picture at the Japanese Academy Awards, and won the award for popularity, Battle Royale ran into controversy outside of Japan.  Only available as a bootlegged cult phenomenon until 2012, the film has become an icon of recent Japanese popular culture for its pitch-black satiric look at the future of education and social conditioning. 


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