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(aka "Yakuza Law")

 

Directed by Teruo Ishii

Japan 1969

 

Director Teruo Ishii (Blind Woman's Curse, Horrors of Malformed Men), the Godfather of J-sploitation, presents Yakuza Law (AKA Yakuza s Law: Lynching) a gruelling anthology of torture, spanning three district periods of Japanese history and bringing to the screen some of the most brutal methods of torment ever devised.

In this deep dive into the world of the Yakuza, meet the violent men who rule the Japanese underworld and the cruel punishments inflicted on those who transgress them. The carnage begins in the Edo Period with a violent tale of samurai vengeance starring Bunta Sugawara (Battles Without Honor and Humanity), before shifting to the Meiji Period as the exiled Ogata (Minoru Oki, Shogun Assassin) returns to face punishment for his past transgressions... and, ultimately, to take his revenge. Finally, the action is brought right up to date with a tale of gang warfare set in then-present-day 60s Japan and headlined by Teruo Yoshida (Ishii's Orgies of Edo), as a powerful crime syndicate seeks bloody vengeance for the theft of one hundred thousand yen.

Brutal, bewildering and definitely not for the faint-hearted, Yakuza Law represents Japanese popular cinema at its most extreme... and most thrilling.

Posters

Theatrical Release: June 27th, 1969

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Review: Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray

Box Cover

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Distribution Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:36:22.651        
Video

2.35:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 42,389,609,632 bytes

Feature: 29,487,236,160 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.87 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

LPCM Audio Japanese 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit
Commentary:

LPCM Audio English 768 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit

Subtitles English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Arrow

 

2.35:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 42,389,609,632 bytes

Feature: 29,487,236,160 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.87 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

New audio commentary by author and critic Jasper Sharp
Erotic-Grotesque and Genre Hopping: Teruo Ishii Speaks, a rare vintage interview with the elusive director on his varied career, newly edited for this release (47:40)
Image gallery
Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Jacob Phillips
FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Tom Mes


Blu-ray Release Date:
May 13th, 2019
Transparent Blu-ray Case

Chapters 12

 

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

ADDITION: Arrow Blu-ray (May 2019): 1969's "Yakuza Law" is a bloody epic crime drama spanning different periods in Japan. Arrow Video bring us the film on a dual-layered Blu-ray with a maxed-out bitrate. The film is shown in the 2.35:1 aspect ratio. Arrow does not specify what the source (print or negative) was used in this transfer. The colors show appropriately bloody reds and lush forest greens, though whites of clothing can look a little teal. There is a nice amount of detail shown in the image, especially clear during static close-ups, not so much during frenetic camera action-scenes. Many characters' dark hair tends to disappear amidst any dark background, suggesting a mediocre contrast ratio. Though the film can look a tad waxy at times, there is a constant film grain, giving the film a desired texture.

The
Blu-ray features the original Japanese 1.0 mono track (24-bit) in uncompressed linear PCM. Masao Yagi (An Actor's Revenge, Orgies of Edo) provides the score, which ranges from tense orchestral music to jazz. Dialogue seems to be audible, though I must state that I do not speak Japanese. There are optional English subtitles on this Region Free Blu-ray (released in both Region 'A' and 'B').

Arrow Video have included a few very substantial bonus features on this disc, starting with a feature-length commentary by author and critic Jasper Sharp. "Erotic-Grotesque and Genre Hopping: Teruo Ishii Speaks" is a 48-minute rare vintage interview with the elusive director, speaking in length about his fascinating career. This interview has been edited with title cards serving as questions. Arrow also includes an image gallery for the film, a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Jacob Phillips, and an illustrated collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by Tom Mes.

"Yakuza Law" is a fun exploitation film, though light on nudity, the film certainly delivers on its promise of bloody violence. Arrow Video have a fine transfer here, not to mention a commentary from Jasper Sharp, noted aficionado of Japanese cinema. This
Blu-ray is ecommended to fans of "Lone Wolf and Cub", "Lady Snowblood", etc. 

Collin Zavitz

 


Menus / Extras

 


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Box Cover

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Distribution Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray


 


 

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