Violent Cop ★★★½

Well, you've got good taste.

Never before has a title been more fitting of its movie. Violent Cop, though it might sound odd at first, reminds me the most of the original Shaft. It has great atmosphere and minimal tangible plot. We follow a guy who wanders around his city to cool music, looking for information. If he doesn't get what he wants, he beats up the person he's interacting with until they cave in or keel over. That's about it. I was often impressed and even unnerved with both Kitano's character and the film's overall approach to violence. Despite its pulp nature, the violence often feels shockingly real, and there were a good few instances that got an audible gasp out of me. (The film also boasts a quality slow-motion fight scene followed by the most mellow-sounding car chase you're likely to come across in a film.) I can't call it anything truly special, but for a directorial debut especially, this is proof of concept that Takeshi Kitano has a worthwhile voice to contribute to the crime genre. Full .5 added to my score just based on well-done I found that violence to be.


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