Director: Takeshi Kitano
In Japan, Takeshi Kitano currently advertises a product called 'Jolt Cola'. Aside from his endorsement, the selling point is that it boasts twice the caffeine of regular colas. For once, star and product are perfectly matched. The crowds that saw Violent Cop will not be surprised to hear that Takeshi's new film is another electrifying entertainment.
The David-and-Goliath plot gets into gear when scrawny teenager Masaki gets into a fight with a yakuza and accidentally breaks the gangster's arm, leaving himself and the gas station where he works open to massive reprisals. What to do? Masaki and a couple of friends fly to Okinawa to buy a gun to protect themselves. On arrival they tag along with a local yakuza (played, inimitably, by Takeshi himself) whose off-the-wall behaviour scares them rigid. He turns out to be caught up in a gang war of his own, and soon they're dodging bullets. But they get their gun and head home for a cataclysmic showdown.
Boiling Point is even better than Violent Cop; a slow-bum thriller that underpins its critique of selfishness and small-mindedness with shocks, breathtaking surprises and truly outrageous jokes. And twice the caffeine.
• Tony Rayns
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