The Yakuza (1975)

The Yakuza


No Top Critics Tomatometer score yet...


Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

In this thriller, former soldier Harry Kilmer returns to Japan to help rescue a friend's daughter. Once he arrives in the country, he discovers that the daughter has been kidnapped by the Japanese mafia. In order to battle them, Kilmer has to ask a favor of an old enemy.

Rating: R
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Mystery & Suspense, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Paul Schrader, Robert Towne
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 23, 2007


as Harry Kilmer

as George Tanner

as Tanaka Ken

as Tanaka Eiko

as Tono Toshiro

as Kato Jiro

as Tono's Bodyguard

as Louise Tanner

as Spider

as Louise Tanner

as Boy Friend

as Tanner's Bodyguard

as Tono's Bodyguard

as Goro's Doorman
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for The Yakuza

All Critics (11) | Top Critics (4)

A confused and diffused film which bites off more than it can artfully chew.

Full Review… | November 6, 2007
Top Critic

The final show-down is one not to be missed.

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

A superior action movie, but all the same, it's for audiences that have grown accustomed over the last few years to buckets of blood, disembowelments and severed hands flying through the air.

Full Review… | October 23, 2004
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Unsettling, but ultimately unsatisfying.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

... Sydney Pollack ... manifests as much mythic sense as a mill foreman.

Full Review… | March 14, 2015
Parallax View

has one leg is still straddling the Think Fast Mr. Moto era.

Full Review… | April 2, 2009

Audience Reviews for The Yakuza

"When an American cracks up, he opens up the window and shoots up a bunch of strangers. When a Japanese cracks up, he closes the window and kills himself. Everything is in reverse."

Not quite as wonderful as The Friends of Eddie Coyle, this is still a pretty great late Mitchum movie, and as an example of mid-Seventies Hollywood flirting with the Far East, The Yakuza is certainly better than Peckinpah's The Killer Elite. By modern standards the film is so slow-moving it barely qualifies as a thriller, though the funereal pacing is very deliberate, emphasising the dignity of the characters, maximising the tension and making the sudden, cathartic eruptions of violence all the more startling. The whole movie is brilliantly shot and edited, not just the splendid fight scenes, with Pollack cleverly cutting through much of the script's wordy exposition by carrying the dialogue of one scene over into the next. Among the interesting credits, the script was written by Leonard and Paul Schrader, with rewrites by Robert Towne; Robert Aldrich was originally slated to direct but Mitchum had him replaced by Pollack; and Mitchum's love interest is played by Keiko Kishi, who played the 'Woman in the Snow' in Kobayashi's Kwaidan.

Stephen M

Super Reviewer

My 2nd favorite Schrader script, my 2nd favorite Robert Towne script and my 2nd favorite Sydney Pollack film.

Ken Stachnik

Super Reviewer

An american meets the dark and violent japanese underworld. an ode to friendship, honor codes and sacrifice among far east gangsters.

Pierluigi Puccini

Super Reviewer

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