Tokyo Tribe (Sono Sion 2014)
Another festival favorite. Since I saw his movie Suicide Club at the International filmfestival of Rotterdam I liked the director. His attendance at that movie years ago was already interesting. Lots of funny answers at the q and a after the movie and a cool introduction by Tony Rayns. This year he is not presenting the movie and maybe it’s because the movie is out for a while now.
The movie itself is another Sion movie. He is well known and also well trained in genrefilms, but everytime he surprises. From adventure/fantasy gangsterlove such as in Love Exposure (2010) or his drama the Land of hope from 2012 which seemed like a reaction to the nuclear treat after the fukushima disaster. Last year he surprised with his tribute to moviemaking and also a hardcore and absurd violent movie called why don’t you play in hell. Tokyo Tribe fits in the last catagory but is different since it is a musical with Japanese Rapmusic. Sono Sion has outdone himself with making a musical movie with a gangstertheme related to rapscenes in Tokyo.
Anyone that does not like rapmusic or musicals I would suggest you don’t see this, even if you like Japanese gangstermovies. If you’re a fan of Sono Sion you actually should cause he did his utmost best to make this movie his own. Complete absurd gangsterbosses, another gorefest, extreme violence and lots of comedies and typical Sion typecasting.
The story deals about different rapscenes/gangs in tokyo that battle each other on their turf/ground. The talk about unity, brotherhood. The group they all hate is the one that actually promotes love, peace, friendship and happiness and is against this gangmentality. While fighthing with each other another group steps up and with their boss they try to overpower Tokyo. The other groups are facing the fact that they need to work together to beat this gangsterboss and his crew.
There’s a lot going on in this movie and it’s pretty good, but some things are probably lost in the translation with the rapsongs cause the lyrics are kinda childish. The length of the movie is a bit too long and some scenes are unnecessary but overall I enjoyed it. After the movie you’ll be singing tokyo tribe for a while or wake up with the song stuck in your head.