Directed by Takashi Miike
Produced by Yuji Nagamor & Naoki Abe
Screenplay by Itaru Era
Music by Kôji Endô
Cast: Tsuyoshi Ujiki, Shôko Nakahara, Tomorowo Taguchi, Ren Osugi, Takeshi Caesar & Yasushi Kitamura

1997/104 mins/Color/Dolby Surround Stereo
1.85:1/Japanese/Japan/NTSC Region 0

Keisuke Hagane (Tsuyoshi Ujiki) is a failed yakuza who can't seem to do anything right. The only reason why he is still in the gang is because of the admiration and devotion he has for his boss, Tosa (Takeshi Caesar). After killing a rival yakuza gang armed only with his sword, Tosa is send to jail. Seven years later he comes out and Keisuke is there to drive him to his country home. Unfortunately, they are betrayed and both are violently killed by two assassins.

Keisuke wakes up, confused and with a metal body (!), Miike's echoes of ROBOCOP. He decides to leave the place where he is for the city. There he runs into a a gang of young delinquents who onced robbed him. They try again by kicking him but instead they break their legs! A few moments later he sees his friend Junji picking up a call girl he used to see, thanks to his now super hearing capability he hears them laughing at him and the size of his penis. He later finds himself short circuted and back to where he woke up. His creator, Genpaku Hiraga (Tomorowo Taguchi), Miike's echoes of FRANKENSTEIN, explains to Keisuke what happened and starts to teach him fighting techniques which are a little too remiscent of ballet! Keisuke has only one thing in mind... to avenge his former boss. Well that and the fact that his male organ his now HUGE! From there betrayal, action, mayhem, rape... and comedy ensues.

This is certainly one of the weirdest of the Takashi Miike films i've seen. I wasn't sure if I had to take it seriously or as a joke but after the "ballet" type training I was sure that Miike didn't take the whole story seriously. Even the KARATE KID's training was more serious!

FULL METAL GOKUDO was released in Japan from Toshiba as a PAL region 2 disc with no English subs. As for the disc I own, I am pretty sure that this isn't an official release. Its regionally coded NTSC 0, features easy to read and removable yellow English subtitles, 12 chapter stops, bios and a trailer. There is no inlay card or booklet and the menus are static. The film is presented in a 1.85:1 aspect ratio, the image is a little grainy from time to time but still quite good. The Dolby Surround Stereo gives a good atmosphere to the film. Nothing spectacular here but it delivers the good. So far this is the only way too see this film with English subs so get it while you can.





This Film Features:

Review by Kim Dubuisson. All Right Reserved. 2003. ©