Battles without Honor and Humanity

Bunta Sugawara as Hirono

Never mind Battles without Honor and Humanity, how about battles that make some sense? There’s lots to love in Kinji Fukasaku’s 1973 gangster movie – the first of a five-part series of “Battles” movies he’d make in two years (amazingly) – but coherence isn’t high on the list. It’s often called the Japanese Godfather, and there’s plenty of that in there. But there’s also Goodfellas, since it’s the story of a guy, Hirono, an ex-soldier who (actually) never always wanted to be a gangster. But once this smalltime criminal has landed in trouble with the law he finds himself sharing a prison cell with a yakuza guy. Once invited to join, he is … Read more