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Dead or Alive: Final

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Posted 25th April 2009 at 11:55 AM by Sam@Cult Labs

Dead or Alive: Final

Apologies: I can only find the trailer with a Spanish narration. Enjoy the visuals. Unless your Spanish that is...

After what seems like an age, Takashi Miike's concluding episode of the Dead or Alive series finallly gots a UK outing on DVD. Tartan released the first two parts during the initial rush to release quirky Japanese extreme cinema, It was a few years before UK fans could get their hands on the concluding episode in this deranged cycle of violent movies.

The Dead or Alive movies are Miike at his most cartoon-like. The understated style of movies like Audition flys out of the window as the action moves into a post-apocalyptic world in which the populace are repressed by an insane megalomaniac mayor.

Riki is a tough, no nonsense cop and Show is a carefree drifter who hooks up with a gang of rebels who want to change things. When the gang kidnap Riki's son, it's time for another insane showdown!

The Dead or Alive films took the cheap, dirty style of Japanese V-Cinema (a slightly more respectable version of 'straight-to-video") and twisted it into a surreal, turbo-charged rush. The second film is slightly more thoughtful and considered but with this concluding part, the series is back to full on insanity.

Dragging in influences from Blade Runner and Asian Cyberpunk flicks like Tetsuo, the movie is set 300 years in the future, where the sky is a filthy, polluted yellow and there's danger everywhere. Like all Miike movies, it crams more ideas into it's running time than any number of Western action movies and it's twisted take on the cliches of Yakuza cinema means that Miike as a director was willing to play with the conventions of his own industry as well as making a mockery of the cheap actioners that second tier Hollywood knocks out.
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