Welcome to the Dark Side
This chapter discusses Japanese director Miike Takashi. For many, Miike's work personifies what they consider to be Japanese contemporary cinema: very violent, stylistic, and highly transgressive. Although primarily known for either violent high-action gangster thrillers such as Dead or Alive (DOA Deddo Oa Araibu—Hanzaisha, 1999) and Ichi the Killer (Koroshiya 1, 2001) or the disturbingly deranged Audition (Ôdishon, 2000), it is his dramatic take on the samurai narrative in 13 Assassins (Jūsannin no Shikaku, 2010) and the charming Bird People in China (Chūgoku no Chōjim, 1998) that illustrate how wide-ranging his work actually is. Miike's films also have visual and narrative depth that forces the audience to question their own relationships to the images on screen.
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