HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Black Panther
Children's Hour, The
Mayhem
Sphere
Guyver, The
Night School
Loveless
Ragtime
Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters
Murders in the Rue Morgue
Wound, The
Scalawag
Let's Get Harry
Girl with Green Eyes
Sunchaser, The
Tom Jones
Downsizing
Defiant Ones, The
Centerfold Girls, The
Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner, The
120 BPM (Beats Per Minute)
Police Academy 3: Back in Training
Safe Place, A
Saturday Night and Sunday Morning
Cargo
Entertainer, The
Wing Commander
Look Back in Anger
Early Man
Killdozer
   
 
Newest Articles
A Yen for the 1990s: Iron Monkey and Satan Returns
Hey, Punk: Jubilee and Rock 'n' Roll High School
Help! with The Knack: Richard Lester in 1965
Roll Up, Get Yer Free Cinema: The Shorts on the BFI Woodfall Blu-rays
Time for Heroes: The Dam Busters and How I Won the War
Hell is a City: Midnight Cowboy and Taxi Driver
Boris Goes Bonkers, Bela Goes Bats: The Old Dark House and Mark of the Vampire
Charles Bronson's Mid-70s: Breakheart Pass and Others
Kids in America: The Breakfast Club vs Metropolitan
80s Dance-Off: Staying Alive vs Murder-Rock vs Breakin'
The Cinematic Darkside of Donald Crowhurst
Dutch Courage: The Flodder Series
Coming of Age: Boys on Film 18 - Heroes on DVD
Country and Irish - The secret history of Irish pop culture
Wash All This Scum Off the Streets: Vigilante Movies
   
 
  Re: Born Killing MachineBuy this film here.
Year: 2016
Director: Yûji Shimomura
Stars: Tak Sakaguchi, Yura Kondo, Takumi Saitoh, Mariko Shinoda, Akio Ôtsuka, Takuya Fujimoto, Hitomi Hasebe, Yoshitaka Inagawa, Issei Ishida, Saori Izawa, Masaya Katô, Manami Kosaku, Masanori Mimoto, Orson Mochizuki
Genre: Drama, Action, Thriller, War, Adventure
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Some time ago, there was a soldier who was so powerful that he became the subject of rumour rather than a confirmation of his actual existence; he was codenamed Ghost. On one training exercise to set about beating him, a small platoon of soldiers were slaughtered in an abandoned building, their commanding officer the last of them to have his throat slashed in a killing spree that has made this man a wanted criminal ever since. But what happened to him? It has taken a while, but he has been tracked to this quiet town on the Japanese coast, where he is calling himself Toshiro (Tak Sakaguchi) and looks after his niece, little Sachi (Yura Kondo), while being a shopkeeper...

Sakaguchi had made quite the name for himself as a big screen martial artist, especially in Japan, so when announced he was retiring from the screen there was great dismay from his legions of fans. Obviously feeling rather guilty, he offered to write and star in one more movie before moving behind the camera and continuing his career there, and Re: Born was that film, a work that started out as a meditative drama, the first five minutes aside, and then after about half an hour of the leading man moping around, it developed into pretty much an hour of non-stop action. If that did not satisfy his followers, then what would? Although it may still leave them wanting more than he was reluctant to give.

That half hour stretch was interesting in that it gave Sakaguchi opportunities to prove his acting chops, not something many an action star was willing to do when their adherents were keen to let them know it was their kicking ass proclivities they really wanted to see from them. Nevertheless, it did offer a measure of depth to what could have resembled not merely a computer game adaptation, but an actual computer game itself as he literally cut a swathe through seemingly dozens upon dozens of camo-uniformed and anonymous military types. This was all to demonstrate Toshiro had no interest in either returning to the fold of the Army, nor paying for his crimes against them previously.

This certainly supplied the action, but once it started and barely let up for that hour it tended to overshadow the good intentions of the character business that had gone before, even if Sachi's kidnapping (yes, that old cliché again) would not have had the same weight if we had not seen him doting over her in an increasingly perilous world. It was merely that those action sequences were so intense that you wondered if the fans he was making this for would not have been content with a solid ninety minutes of them, not caring about the little girl or Kenji (Takumi Saitoh), the hero's best buddy who had been disabled in combat and now needs a wheelchair to get around. Naturally, he wants to join in the violence, and it was an irony that the action which paralysed him from the waist down was what he most relished getting back to.

But this was Sakaguchi's movie, and there was no way of forgetting that. Seriously, there must have been at least fifty throat slashings from his character alone, one after the other in one long sequence of sustained bloodshed, impressive in its choreography but it did feel like one damn thing after another after a while. Director Yûji Shimomura was a stuntman and stunt co-ordinator himself, and handled the filming as well as apparently winding up his leading actor and letting him go could possibly do, but it was a case of not simply giving the audience what it wanted, but giving them second servings, third servings, fourth, fifth... To add to that gaming mood, there was even a big boss to get past come the end of the movie, as seeing Toshiro dispatching countless, similar-looking stunt performers had to lead somewhere, and that climactic battle was it. He certainly assured his credentials as a major Japanese action star in his swan song, but for the unconverted Re: Born may have been a little baffling, philosophising and all. Music by Kenji Kawai.

[Eureka's Blu-ray looks and sounds tip-top, and has a couple of trailers and an intro as features, that latter lasting about thirty seconds but pretty amusing with it.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 508 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which film has the best theme song?
Spectre
The Ups and Downs of a Handyman
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Paul Smith
  Jamie Nichols
Andrew Pragasam
George White
Darren Jones
  Butch Elliot
   

 

Last Updated: