Seijun Suzuki

April 8, 2011

Seijun Suzuki

He’s got a ton of films and I can’t vouch for all of them. But he did some hip and wacky stuff in the 60’s. If you watch Suzuki’s interviews you’ll learn that the surrealist flair that permeates many of his films were out of necessity, not because he had some deep symbolism he wanted to convey. You won’t convince me Tarantino didn’t see some of these before making Kill Bill. Then again, I don’t think Tarantino has made a movie yet that didn’t “borrow” from another filmmaker (Ringo Lam’s ears are burning (check out City on Fire)).

Youth of the Beast – Starring the bizarre looking Jo Shishido (he had plastic surgery to give himself cheekbones. Looks like he got Pamela Anderson’s surgeon).

Gate of Flesh – Not a Yakuza film (Seijun did a lot of those), but about prostitutes in post WWII Japan. Hmm, was he stepping into Mizoguchi territory? Joey “Cheeks” Shishido is also in this one. There’s some pretty strong stuff in here for 1964. If you’re an animal lover, you might want to close your eyes when they bring a cow into their shelter. I’ll just tell ya, they don’t go hungry and it’s not special effects. And did the American Pie guys see this? Condom stew, indeed.

Tokyo Drifter – Poor Tetsuya Watari. Every time he wants out, they pull him back in.

Branded to Kill – Apple cheeked Jo Shishido returns.

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