Jingi naki tatakai: Dairi senso (Battles Without Honor and Humanity: Proxy War) Reviews
Another very enjoyable entry and probably an improvement on the first movie (I will watch the 2nd movie in the series when I get a chance). The plot of this movie is very much like a chess game - bosses trying to make other bosses into making a mistake so they can take over Hiroshima's biggest clan. Trying to keep out of the situation at first but inevitably being forced to take sides is Hirono in the hope of deposing his hated enemy Yamamori. Bunta Sugawara is fantastic once more as the bad ass Hirono. You've got to feel sorry for his character. People he calls friends betrays him time after time. Director Kinji Fukasaku keeps us interested in the storyline with plenty of backstabbing, suspense and heavy violence. Fukasaku's vision of yakuza life is there's no such thing as loyalty - you can be friends with a rival clan one minute and the next you're plotting their downfall. The movie chugs along at a nice energetic pace so you're never bored watching it. The only problem with watching this movie is you want to know what happens next - nothing is resolved in the plot so I guess I'll have to watch the final 2 installments to find out the conclusion to the whole saga.
The finale is pretty fucking intense though.
As always, Bunta Sugawara ranks among the greatest stone faced bad-asses ever. His tendency to beat people with the scabbard of a shirasaya... is awesome.
Not for the squeamish or people who hate subtitles.