Ichi The Killer (2001)

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Based upon a popular comic book, Ichi The Killer is the story of a severely emotionally disturbed young man who is manipulated into expressing his impotence and repressed rage by butchering various gangland targets in a live action Manga piece that takes the Japanese fascination with amputation and mutilation to the ultimate extreme.

Utterly bizarre in a way only splatter flicks ever are but executed with rather more intelligence than most of the genre, it takes its violence to such an absurd extreme it becomes almost Loony Tunes silly, but the grim attention to detail Miike shows when portraying the blood and guts makes for a disturbing juxtaposition of styles and images.

It certainly won’t be to everyone’s taste – particularly for the weak of stomach – and much of the plot is not satisfactorily explained, but Ichi The Killer is an unforgettably visceral experience.

7/10

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