Battle Royale (Batoru rowaiaru) (JP) studio Anchor Bay director Kinji Fukasaku writer Kinji Fukasaku starring Tatsuya Fujiwara, Aki Maeda rating R tagline Could you kill your best friend? Official Score: Average User Rating: ADD A USER REVIEW 16 comments Posted By HellinKiller on February 23, 2008 @ 7:02 am Log in to Reply ★☆☆☆☆ This is one of my favorite films. The book that it’s based off of is my favorite. Heavily influenced by the writings of George Orwell this film is not only entertaining but contains a lot of social commentary that you might not understand if you are unfamiliar with the book, or Japanese culture in general. The film is centered around male student number 15, Shuya Nanahara. He and the rest of Shiroiwa Junior High’s class 3-B enter the Battle Royale program under the premise of a field trip. On the bus the students are gassed and regain consciousness in a mysterious classroom with their Previous teacher Kitano. Who left their school after was stabbed by Shuya’s orphanage buddy male student number seven Yoshitoki Kuninobu. The sadistic Kitano plays the students a short, peppy instructional video on the rules. 1. Students have 3 days to kill each other off until their is only one remaining. If there are more by the end of the game the collars on their necks will detonate and kill them all. 2.Each student is given a day pack containing supplies including a mystery weapon (which includes everything from a smith & wesson or an uzi to a pot lid or paper fan.) 3.Their will be danger zones announced periodically that will detonate their collars upon entry. The students are given their bags and released by class number and from the time they exit the door the game is on! Gunfights, poisoning, suicide, and many other deaths fill this movie with (to lift an analogy from the book) the aesthetics of a sausage factory bin. Their are some slight discrepancies between the film and the book that I find left the story a little undefined. I felt like some of the character development needed to be touched upon more…although I realize that this is a 300 page book… And that the system of government needed to be established more in order for the program, and the characters to make more sense. All in all, this is, in my opinion, a very innovative story that translates beautifully to film. Posted By jako on April 25, 2008 @ 2:04 pm Log in to Reply ★★★★★ The guy below me didn’t post his true rating ;D. All he said is true tho, the movies is amazing, yet the books are far better, but I know there are lots of scene’s in there that never could have made it to the final cut (like the fallen angels side story). Basicly its about a law/reality program. You could kind of see this movies as something like Running Man of The Condemned, but with a very real looking and disturbing plot about school children in those cute innocent uniforms killing each other to fight for their own lives. Mix that up with relationships, love, hate and all of the other school student feelings and you have Battle Royale, the shocking imagination made into a movie that takes it all to a whole new level! Posted By Da_Musical_1 on April 26, 2008 @ 8:49 pm Log in to Reply ★★★★★ when I first watched BR I did not understand the story whatsoever! Then I realized they sold me the second BR instead of the first one! Hahah, once I saw the first one, I was like OMG this is crazy! I love the kind of movies that make you think different things. The biggest thing it made me think about was, “What would I do in this situation?” I highly recommend it. Posted By joannacalled on June 4, 2008 @ 7:57 pm Log in to Reply ★★★★★ The countdown continues until there is only one left. Very interesting character study. What would you choose? Survival, friendship, murder, love, or trying to beat the system. Today people have such lifeless lives, it makes you think about what you truly value. If only the kids in “The Lord of the Flies” had a conch shell that could make someone’s head explode! Posted By thedescent08 on June 27, 2008 @ 2:21 am Log in to Reply ★★★★★ epic epic epic! Posted By trabis on July 4, 2008 @ 5:24 am Log in to Reply ★★★★★ Another movie American directors are planning to kill… Posted By jarofsap on July 14, 2008 @ 9:33 pm Log in to Reply ★★★★★ Fantastic, original, amazing, gruesome, heartwarming, etc, etc. Fina another word of praise and I’ll toss it in. This movie takes an insane concept and humanizes it. In my mind, this is flawless. I can only hope the sequel is anywhere near this quality. I cringe when I hear there’s a remake coming. Posted By TheDeadMayTasteBad on August 4, 2008 @ 2:42 am Log in to Reply ★★★★★ “This film is film that I believed had to be made, and it was only a matter of time before it was. Yet it was a film that the US mainstream could never have conceived making. Firstly to get it out of the way I will say that I loved this movie, although at no point did I feel comfortable while watching it. It had the power and emotional content, that while not necessarily apparent in the dialogue was visible on screen at all times. I am truly glad that this film has come out of mainstream Japanese cinema. It would have only been made in the US by independent film-makers who would have basked in the glory of its controversy and felt oh-so-smug that they had created it, while shoving a moral in your face. While I actually have no problem with US Indie film I do feel that a Western background would have comprised on visceral content, and upped the content of cheap moral points. For those who say the violence was “cartoon-style” and laughable must have been watching a different film. Whilst this film is heavy in black humour I can clearly say that the deaths are shocking in the extreme, and there is no relenting from the beginning to the end. Only occasionally does the camera pan away from the final deed. The only deaths that have a dark humour content to them, are those involving Kitano (Beat Takeshi) and the “lone” vigilante (those who have seen the film will know what I am talking about). Other sections, such as the “Training Video” are equally comedic, and absurd. Yet other deaths are shocking in the extreme, and show how the slightest suspicion can have disastrous consequences for groups that only have trust to keep them together, a truly shocking scene in the Lighthouse reinforces this. The fact that this film employs Children as the main protagonists of the story is the key to the whole impact of the film. We have all seen films like The Running Man where adults fight adults for survival and it seems that much less shocking, albeit that film was handled in a completely different manner. Children have the innocence that makes the brutality of this film that much more shocking, adults in the same situation would have had the reaction from audiences of cheering at the screen as the hero dispatches yet another victim. This could never and would never have been the case with this film. To another commentator who felt that this film sticks with you less than Scream, I simply fail to find this to be anywhere close to the truth. The deaths in Scream although bloody are nothing but pastiche of those films that Scream is mimicking, ultimately throwaway deaths that up in brutality in order to out-do the last one that have one or two psychotic perpetrators, who eventually get their comeuppance. In this film their are no victims and besides one exception there are no villains amongst the children. They simply HAVE to play the game or die. Well I encourage all those who feel they can stomach it to go and see this film or find it available somewhere (as I believe it has been banned in the US). It is not truly a film denouncing the evils of Reality TV or showing us the future of that trend of Broadcasting, that is merely a plot device to place the children in this situation. The nature of the film lies in its deconstruction of Friendships, Trust and our views on Innocence. Go and see it not as a spectator of this BR spectacle but as one of the participants and remember what was important to you when you were at school, and whether any of those rivalries, hatreds and friendships would have been enough for you to decide who deserves to die and who deserves to live.” –Henry Postan, imdb.com Posted By wolves-ate-the-king on August 5, 2008 @ 7:57 pm Log in to Reply ★★★★★ this movie took me by suprise i didn’t think it would be at good as it was. Posted By Jacques on August 30, 2008 @ 2:26 pm Log in to Reply ★★★★☆ I think from now on when someone asks me what a decent movies is, not one that will blow their minds, but one that will at least keep them awake, I think this is what I’ll point to. It’s not intense or emotional or all that original, but it’s pretty solid. I only got bored a couple times. To this day I’ve yet to understand why people are so offended by teenagers/kids dying in movies. I’m 18, going into collage this upcoming semester, and the idea of me having to kill off my classmates 4 years ago doesn’t strike me as any sicker than me having to kill off my coworkers in 20 years from now. Kids, adults: I see little difference in movies like this. Maybe it just simply boils down to the fact people are pansies. Which brings me to the argument of whether or not this film is meant/is cartoony. First, I already made the point the subject matter didn’t disturb me anymore than watching SpongeBob Squarepants. The violence was not excessive or insanely graphic–it was pretty much a gory action movie. The violence was certainly enough to earn an R-rating, but it was not pushing the limits by any means. When the ending scene comes it IS something out of a cartoon. Likewise, the opening scene with the video tape and the “you don’t respect grown-ups” speech were both as cartoony as can humanly be. I think the over-the-topness of the plot was enough to suggest that this is a bloody cartoon, and the scenes I just mentioned it conclude that argument. Overall, if you look at it from a Saturday morning cartoon perspective, this is rather entertaining and fun. But if you’re disturbed and set-off and are looking for some sort of deep social commentary and plotline, you’re not going to find anything here. Posted By HeroAtTheHeart on August 31, 2008 @ 5:34 pm Log in to Reply ★★★★★ ok wow theres no way im gonna get anywhere near typing as much as you guys so im not even gonna try. Ive just got a few things to say. this is easily one of the best japanesse movies ive ever seen. this movie really makes you think if you were in their situation what would you do. “could you kill your friends” Posted By stevodragisic on September 1, 2008 @ 1:48 pm Log in to Reply ★★★★★ one of the best films ever made. the story, the cast and the deaths are fantastic. Posted By drek on September 21, 2008 @ 2:43 am Log in to Reply ★★★★★ If you can get passed the little hurdle of watching subs you got a great movie in front of you. Battle Royale is set a couple of years in the future where society is failing and a growing barrier violence between kids and adults is becoming too much so the Prime Minister of the country starts a “game” called Battle Royale. The rules for this game are simple, you have 3 days to survive and only 1 person can win which means you must kill your very own friends if you don’t want to die. The contestants are chosen based on the worst students of the country. Throughout the movie there is lots of violence and is interesting to see the way some kids deal with the situation coupled with a decent ending and you got yourself a good movie. Battle Royale was released in 2000 and has gathered such a cult following and fame in other countries that there IS going to be an american re-make, least that’s what the rumor mill is saying. 2011? Posted By Protecious on October 1, 2008 @ 2:27 am Log in to Reply ★★★★★ what a unique and interesting movie this was, i had a very fun time watching this because it was a very unique and original concept sort of ripped off later by wwe’s horrible film the condemned. i still have yet to see the sequel but hopefully it’s great like this one was. Posted By StayPuft138 on October 22, 2008 @ 8:27 pm Log in to Reply ★★★★★ This is my current favorite movie. Not only from the given awesomeness that it is but just the thought that’s pushed on you, could you kill your friends to survive? Disturbing but amazing as well. Posted By horrorking95 on April 15, 2012 @ 5:27 am Log in to Reply ★★★★★ “Battle Royale” may seem on the surface to be just mindless killing of older children, however the genius of Kinji Fukasaku’s masterpiece is the hidden message and impressive writing that lies their. In a similar way to Kubrik’s “A Clockwork Orange” (as it’s often compared to) it is a comment on a future society that’s deteriorating, with youth’s disrupting the world. From here the society props us a survival programme called “Battle Royale” in which students must kill themselves until only one survives. “Battle Royale” is written to perfection. Why? Because one of the greatest things about this film is the way it explores the lives of students we don’t even know that well and makes us care about them! This is the source to why the film is so utterly gripping (like the book I suppose). We have three main characters, but throughout this violent journey we’re introduced to people who we haven’t even seen before in the film and are made to care about them. It’s pure genius writing that goes along with the spectacular visuals. Kinji Fukasaku’s directing is brilliant. He follows the same Japanese formula for directing which mimics Tarantino’s directing in the spectacular “Kill Bill”. It really is very nice to look at right down to the lighting and effects. It is pretty gory, but could’ve afforded to be a little more bloodier but that doesn’t really matter. Kinji Fukasaku takes us through the darkest side of human nature to thought provoking effect! he even manages to splash jet black humour in there which does actually work really well and sometimes to a metaphorical effect. Another thing I really adore about this film is the melodramatic music. It uses it in a similar way to Stanley’s masterpiece “A Clockwork Orange” it’s over the top and works to near-perfection. In the end this is a stunningly original film with a heart-felt message to give. All the aspects work to create a near perfect film with the spectacular screenplay, impressive directing and stunning cinematography. I sit here writing with a “Battle Royale” T-Shirt. Yeah, it’s really that good.