Kamikaze Taxi (1995) - Rotten Tomatoes

Kamikaze Taxi (1995)

Kamikaze Taxi





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Movie Info

Masato Harada tackles the racism experienced by South American-born, ethnically Japanese returnees in this two-fisted crime drama and road movie. The film centers on Tatsuo (Kazuya Takahashi) -- a low-level, short-tempered gangster moving up in the pimping business. Yet, when he sends out his one and only hooker (Reiko Kataoka) to service a wizened politician, she returns beaten, battered, and bruised. When Tatsuo's girlfriend complains, she is killed by crime boss Animaru (Mickey Curtis) as Tatsuo is forced to look on. Seeking revenge, he and his posse trash the politician's house and swipe a stack of yen. In retaliation, Tatsuo's own bosses put a hit out on them. After a bloody shoot out in a forest, the protagonist is the only one to emerge alive. He hails a cab with the aim of making a suicide run at the gang's HQ, but the cabbie proves to be a Peruvian returnee (Koji Yakusho), who speaks in a strange accent and can't read a Japanese map. Though at first the driver seems wide-eyed and innocent, he reveals an inner strength in chaotic situations. Soon the two seem less like a passenger and driver and more like two allies in the same beleaguered army. ~ Jonathan Crow, Rovimore
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Art House & International
Directed By:
In Theaters:
On DVD: Oct 12, 2004


Koji Yakusho
as Kazumasa Kantake
Kazuya Takahashi
as Tatsuo Minami
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Audience Reviews for Kamikaze Taxi


(*** 1/2): [img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/icons/icon14.gif[/img]

Interesting, well-acted, and well-directed.


Probably one of the most original (not in terms of style but of its topic and tempo) and important Japanese films made in the last 20 years. Its DVD has not yet released in Japan, probably because it touches the dark side of the post-WWII Japan like Kamikaze soldiers, foreign workers in Japan, Japanese immigrants to Latin America, politics, etc, but it is really well-made film worth watching again and again. Performance of actors, especially Koji Yakusho, is great, and its action scenes are really as in tense as good Hollywood films of the kind. The director Masato Harada studied film in the US, and it really affects his viewpoint about Japan, which you can sense very much in this film.

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