Recapped!: ‘Outrage’

“You know you’re dealing with the Yakuza, right?”

In keeping within the same vein of this Summer, I decided to put up a few other reviews of Gangster films I watched outside of the marathon. Believe I will continue it soon. Just a lot of things going on at once, which keeps me a busy man. Speaking of being busy, Beat Takeshi’s ‘Outrage’ seems to be a film about being busy. Busy making money, busy selling drugs, busy double-crossing someone (you get the idea). So, did ‘Outrage’ do enough to make me look forward to the sequel hitting theaters later this year? I’ll discuss in a second, but first I wanted to talk a little about the director.

Directed By: Kitano “Beat” Takeshi

I don’t like the way Tarantino treats violence. Pulp Fiction (1994) doesn’t show realistic violence, but to show violence realistically, you need stamina. It’s not easy.”

(quote by way of imdb.com, here’s a list of more)

 

I found this particular quote incredibly interesting in regards to Mr. Takeshi’s approach to filmmaking. When working on ‘Outrage’, Beat Takeshi reportedly built the movie around different ways he had his characters being killed. He actually started with coming up with the death scenes before he even had a story! Why does that surprise me? Because it seems reckless to even approach a project that way; even though for the most part, Takeshi makes it work.

First off, Takeshi is a reniassance man. What? Reniassance man? Yep, in every sense of the word (at least by how I define it). He’s studied to be an engineer, ended up getting a break into comedy when another stand-up got sick. Since then he’s been host of television shows, a novelist, painter, poet, and an actor; in addition to being a director. He’s known for his deadpan delivery on camera, as well as his editing shots in his films straight to the result of a previous scene skipping over the particulars. Now he doesn’t always do this, but he does it more so than other directors which leads critics into calling it one of his trademarks.

“You’re nothing but a henchman dog!?”

Considering Takeshi’s own penchant for violence in his films, the guy does seem to have crafted onscreen mortality into an art. In ‘Outrage’ an angry Takeshi berates a superior member of the Yakuza right before smashing his fist up into the poor guy’s chin. The impact causes the man to bite down with seething force onto his own tongue, sending blood gushing from his clenching teethe. And just when you thought that was enough, Takeshi then draws his gun and drills a shot into the top of the guy’s head. Just, bang! While the violence is certainly at it’s bloodiest; the stronger point of the film seems to be how the gangsters on screen live their daily lives. They’re constantly struggling against one another; always looking to outmanuever or overpower weaker foes at every turn. The movie is chaulk full of murder, intimadation, and black mail which chararcters use as an invitation to punch, stomp, and smack the constant horrible hell out one another.I mean at one point in the film, Takeshi sandwich scenes that  moved the story along with scenes of beatings and in one incident someone being struck with a lead pipe across the head. The members of these crime syndicates and gangs are ruthless, regret nothing, and impose their will on society; and when they clash *insert Unstoppable Force, Immovable object metaphor*. And while the ending falls on the side of cold, unflinching reality; the ride is fun while it lasts. Why am I being so vague? Because “Recapped” is just my own thoughts on the film, without spoiling too much of it (Jason!). Outrage is however a film I’d want my friends into the Godfather movies to watch; as they’d at least appreciate it the most.

Directed by Takeshi Kitano
Produced by
Written by Takeshi Kitano
Starring Takeshi Kitano
Music by Keiichi Suzuki
Cinematography Katsumi Yanagijima
Editing by Takeshi Kitano
Studio Office Kitano
Distributed by
Release date(s)
Running time 109 minutes
Country Japan
Language Japanese
English
Box office 634 million yen

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