Jingi naki tatakai (Battles Without Honor and Humanity)(The Yakuza Papers)(War Without a Code) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Jingi naki tatakai (Battles Without Honor and Humanity)(The Yakuza Papers)(War Without a Code) Reviews

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November 6, 2016
Battles without Honor & Humanity is stylish and shocking. It deromanticizes organized crime and portrays the dirty politics of criminal organizations. Like many of Fukasaku's films, there are a lot of characters and subplots that requires attentive viewing to follow along. Also, with a nine-year time frame crammed into a 99-minute run time, the film feels reductive.
½ September 29, 2016
Inspired by the success of The Godfather and based upon a series of newspaper articles depicting the Yakuza lifestyle firsthand, Battles Without Honor & Humanity sent a shockwave throughout the then-stagnant universe of Japanese gangster movies and brought about many sequels and imitators. The plot of this film centers around Shozo Hirono (Bunta Sugawara) and his struggles with climbing the ladder in organized crime. Hirono adheres to a code of honor that the Yakuza supposedly cherishes, but his peers and even his superiors tend to only act chivalrous when it suits them. Battles Without Honor & Humanity attracted a lot of scrutiny for its grisly violence, gritty performance from Bunta Sugawara, and the frantic cinema verite style that director Kinji Fukasaku shot it in. It's frequently compared to similar films being made by Sidney Lumet and Martin Scorsese at the same time, but Battles Without Honor & Humanity also bears a grim charisma that's all its own.
July 10, 2015
One of the key Yakuza films that sought to shatter the myth of chivalrous behaviour amongst gangsters that had heretofore been portrayed in film and to replace it with its opposite: betrayal, paranoia, greed, and, yes, a lack of honor and humanity. This was the first big hit for director Kinji Fukusaku (later famous in his old age for Battle Royale) and star Bunta Sugawara and it spawned four sequels. Not surprisingly, the film is extremely bloody and brutal, as we follow the Yamamori family's birth, rise, and eventual splintering. Nothing is glamourized: from the early days of the post-WWII black market to the later days of entrepreneurial business ventures jointly operated with politicians, central characters are just as likely to get rubbed out by a backstabbing surprise attack. Although, at first, I thought I might get lost trying to identify the myriad sub-bosses, eventually I was able to grasp the various players and the Shakespearian machinations of the plot (thanks also to the subtitled announcements of each character's death, accompanied by a fanfare of trumpets). Gritty, violent, not for all tastes, but a touchstone in this genre.
May 26, 2015
A powerful crime movie, with excellent direction and good cast.
July 30, 2014
The Godfather of Japanese cinema. Genius.
April 26, 2014
TOHO CINEMAS Nagoya Baycity, 2014/4/26
December 14, 2013
Sugawara's performance is a display of Japanese gangster bravura unlike any other.
September 17, 2013
Grim, wonderfully immersive stuff that draws you into the criminal world that prevailed in Japan shortly after WWII. Happy to finally have given it a day in court, now to find the rest of the films in the series!

Recommended.
October 18, 2012
With the cool style and classic tale of treachery, betrayal, and violence, Battles Without Honor and Humanity truly feels like an exciting yakuza film merged with a classic American gangster film, thus giving it the nickname of the "Japanese Godfather." Although, it doesn't quite reach the same sort of epic scale on any level, it's still an interesting and enjoyable film.
July 30, 2012
Narrative is way off and lacks character definition. You don't know who's fighting who. Such a loose film that lacks every basic aspects in film making.
May 10, 2012
interest yakuza story
April 7, 2012
If the rest of the episodes/films hold up to the humor and style of this badass opener, I'll be proud to showcase the boxset!
April 3, 2012
Very confusing, yet engaging.
December 20, 2011
Considerada uno de los cl√°sicos del cine japon√ (C)s, The Yakuza Papers Vol. 1: Battles Without Honor and Humanity es exactamente eso. Una guerra de poder entre yakuzas donde el ganador es el que menos escr√ļpulos tiene. El estilo documental de la pel√≠cula es genial para mostrar la verdadera cara de estos individuos y no la versi√≥n romantizada que durante d√ (C)cadas se present√≥ en ese g√ (C)nero. La pelicula tiene demasiados personajes y la pel√≠cula solo se concentra en las traiciones y asesinatos de los mismos. Como consecuencia, lo unico que sabemos de los personajes es que yakuzas sin escrupulos, salvo por el protagonista quien es un poco m√°s honorable que los dem√°s y sirve como vinculo para mostrar a√Īos muy violentos en Jap√≥n. Aun asi, cuando acaba la pelicula, ya te sientes listo para ver la secuela.
GS
Super Reviewer
½ December 6, 2011
Absolutely deserves the title of being the "Japanese Godfather". Whereas Coppola's masterpiece focuses almost completely on one family, Fukasaku's film touches upon many families while still remaining devoted to the Yamamouri Yakuza clan. Fun to watch, formulaic but not so predictable and still exciting. The characters are very memorable and deliver some great dialogue. Shozo Hironi and Tetsuya Sakai are enviably cool. Other performances are good and tough all-around, especially the coniving Yamamouri. Fukasaku's documentary-like and experimental cinematography makes this film more than an usual action flick for me. Very very interesting stuff presented in a very watchable film.
October 15, 2011
The first of this five part movie epic introduces the viewer to what will be a 30 year long struggle of gang warfare in Japan after the bombing of Hiroshima. These are violent movies, and director Kinji Fukasaku does not spare the viewer as to how, why and where these thugs were able to rise to power after Japan's defeat in WWII. We are witness to betrayals, deceit and the methods of how the yakuza become organized. Everything in the yakuza clans were modeled along business lines-and we witness the so-called yakuza myth being destroyed. These are vicious gangs who will go through anyone, and everyone to get what they feel belongs to them. As for loyalty, forget about it, there is none. Many of those who started out with the yakuza after the war were former soldiers. One of these is the movie's primary protagonist Shozo Hirono. Shozo Hirono is a former soldier who is initiated into the gang after an altercation with another yakuza. As Shozo rises through the ranks, we see his character going through the motions of honor and loyalty-even though his superiors are not entirely of the same mode.

If you like gritty gangster movies then you've come to the right place. The disjointed storyline might be a little disorientating to those who have never seen a Yakuza movie before, but director Fukasaku helps you out with a running total of who has died (using a similar method in Battle Royale). The movie was revolutionary because it was some of the first to depict the yakuza life as one without honor, as the title reveals. It also showed the emptiness, brutality, destruction and tragedy of the yakuza lifestyle. The message of the movie is very in-your-face, because at the time almost every movie glorified the gangster life and heroic bloodshed. This movie is not just for yakuza fans, but for fans of all Japanese cinema, as well as fans of cinema in general. Though the series may portray a great gangster tale, it's also a fantastic movie and the viewer need not be a fan of the genre.
February 4, 2011
Yes. This movie is badass. Not as good as The Godfather, which is unfortunately always compared to, but I really liked it.
January 10, 2011
I am in the mood of watching these old Japanese movies right now. I wish "Goku-tsuma" is available from Netflix. Some of them spoke odd and unnatural Hiroshima (or Kure) dialect, and it's just fun to listen them. Bunta was still cute in "Battles without Honor and Humanity".
½ November 14, 2010
An amazing Yakuza flick which is very effective and memorable, even 30 years later. While it speeds along at breakneck pace (making it hard for the foreign viewer to read all the subtitles so quickly) it tells the true stories of the yakuza wars in Hiroshima following world war 2. The style and music are enthralling (and more than likely influenced American mafia films like The Godfather Trilogy). A must see.
½ September 3, 2010
The Yakuza Papers, Vol. 2: Deadly Fight in Hiroshima
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