Dead or Alive Trilogy [Blu-ray] [2 Discs]

Director Takashi Miike weaves a trilogy that surpasses time and space in this action fueled crime series helmed by Shô Aikawa and Riki Takeuchi. The two main characters meet time and again: as yakuza and cop, android and human, and rival assassins. Blu-ray discs include special edition contents and bonus features.
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Overview

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Special Features

  • Archive interviews with cast and crew
  • Archive making-of featurettes for DOA2: Birds and DOA: Final
  • New audio commentary for Dead or Alive by Miike biographer Tom Mes
  • New interview with actor Riki Takeuchi
  • New interview with actor Show Aikawa
  • New interview with producer and screenwriter Toshiki Kimura
  • Original theatrical trailers for all three films

Synopsis

Dead or Alive
Takashi Miike takes a dime-a-dozen yakuza script and turns it inside out in this high-octane surrealist crime action thriller. The film's first ten minutes is a breathless montage depicting a naked woman clutching a bag of cocaine being thrown off a high-rise, a porcine Chinese gangster devouring bowl after bowl of noodles before getting whacked, a tinsel-wigged stripper in mid-grind, another Chinese gangster having sex with a guy in a pubic bathroom, clowns throwing knives, and the world's longest cocaine line. Welcome to planet Miike -- one that seems unnervingly like reality but just tweaked enough that the viewer believes almost anything can (and does) happen. What follows is a tale pitting narcotics cop Jojima (Sho Aikawa), who has an ailing daughter and a neglected wife, against Ryuichi (Riki Takeuchi), a Chinese-born gangster sporting a hairstyle that would make Wayne Newton jealous. As Ryuichi tries to muscle in on a big drug haul from Taiwan, those closest to him get killed -- particularly his whey-faced younger brother and girlfriend (the latter meets a particularly grizzly end at the hands of a sadistic scat-enthusiast yakuza). Likewise, Jojima, who is on Ryuichi's tail, looses his partner, his wife, and his daughter. Soon the two are on the road to a literally cataclysmic confrontation. ~ Jonathan Crow, Rovi

Dead or Alive 2: The Birds
In spite of its title, this film bares no direct relation to Takashi Miike's rip-roarin' Dead or Alive, which is not surprising since ended with world going up in flames in the last installment. This film opens with Mizuki (Sho Aikawa), who is hired by an eccentric magic enthusiast (Tsukamoto Shinya) to off a yakuza crime lord, only to have his target wasted by a rival mobster Shuichi (Riki Takeuchi). It turns out that the two are long-lost childhood friends who grew up in an orphanage in a remote island in the Inland sea. After the crime, they find themselves drawn back to their childhood haunt. There they reconnect with another friend, Kohei (Kenichi Endo), who ended up not a hired gun, but a modest fisherman who also runs the orphanage. After giving a hilarious performance for a room full of kids, Mizuki and Shuichi decide to leave the island and to work together as hitmen. This time, however, they're killing to make a difference -- figuring that with each scumbag they ice they can save ten children when they donate their proceeds to charity. ~ Jonathan Crow, Rovi

Dead or Alive: Final
DragonBall Z meets Blade Runner meets a William S. Burroughs head trip in this hallucinogenic sci-fi flick directed by Takashi Miike. It is set in the year 2346 in the city-state of Yokohama, which has become thoroughly sinocized in the intervening 300 years. People speak a mishmash of Japanese, Chinese, and English and the streets are bathed in digital noise. The place is run with an iron fist by an exuberantly gay potentate named Woo (Richard Cheung) who, hoping to fashion a newer, crueler society, drugs the populace with a cocktail akin to Prozac-laced birth control pills. Pregnant women and children are sent to prison. Woo's lead henchman is named Honda (Riki Takeuchi), a sneering uber-cop with a Wayne Newton-style head of hair. The underground resistance is led by the English-speaking Fon (Terence Yin), his fierce girlfriend Jyun (Josie Ho), and a yellow-haired humanoid robot named Ryo (Sho Aikawa). Raids, kung-fu fistfights, and general weirdness ensue until the cataclysmic showdown between Ryo and Honda. This film is the third and final in Miike's reported Dead or Alive trilogy. ~ Jonathan Crow, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Riki Takeuchi
    Riki Takeuchi - Ryuichi
  • Sho Aikawa
    Sho Aikawa - Detective Jojima
  • Renji Ishibashi
    Renji Ishibashi
  • Image coming soon
    Dankan
  • Hirotaro Honda
    Hirotaro Honda

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