zomgmouse:

Films in 2012 #23: The Yakuza (Sydney Pollack, 1974).

When I watched this film, I felt vaguely impressed by it. Now it’s up there in my top ever films. The fact that it’s shamefully underrated, underknown and underappreciated helps; I’m like that. Even so, it has reason to be rated, known and appreciated. It’s excellent.

Stylistically unfaltering, it’s infused with feelings and themes of painful nostalgia for a violent past, and manages to deal with such abstract notions of friendship, loyalty, honour and betrayal in an unexpectedly heavy and physical way. The scene at the end where <SPOILER> Robert Mitchum cuts his finger off </SPOILER> is a masterful symbolic encapsulation of the film as a whole. Robert Mitchum himself is a fantastic vessel for the film’s feel; his face and demeanour have “let’s get it over with… again” written all over them. Interestingly, he chose Pollack over Robert Aldrich to direct. Another side-note: written by Leonard Schrader (Kiss of the Spider Woman) and Paul Schrader (Taxi Driver), then rewritten by Robert Towne (Chinatown).

Very, very recommended.

HELL YEAH

  1. salesonfilm reblogged this from zomgmouse and added:
    HELL YEAH
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