HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
For All Mankind
Glass Key, The
Captor, The
Hide in Plain Sight
Wildlife
X2
Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese
Heiress, The
Cold Pursuit
Firestorm
Dogs of War, The
Holy Mountain, The
Piercing
Under Fire
Jennifer on My Mind
People on Sunday
Lethal Weapon 4
Downhill Racer
Emily
Odette
Escape Room
Across the Pacific
Madeline's Madeline
You're Gonna Miss Me
Iron Sky: The Coming Race
Derby
Mortal Engines
Union City
Knife+Heart
Little Stranger, The
Sauvage
Watermelon Man
Wandering Earth, The
Good Fairy, The
Killer Party
Holmes & Watson
Monster in the Closet
Sand, The
Glass
My Brilliant Career
   
 
Newest Articles
Woo's the Boss: Last Hurrah for Chivalry & Hand of Death on Blu-ray
Get Ahead in Showbiz: Expresso Bongo and It's All Happening
Outer Space and Outta Sight: Gonks Go Beat on Blu-ray
Tucked: The Derren Nesbitt Interview
Locomotion Pictures: The Best of British Transport Films on Blu-ray
Roman Scandals: Extreme Visions from Ancient Rome
Spider-Wrong and Spider-Right: The Dragon's Challenge and Into the Spider-Verse
Monster Dog: Cujo on Blu-ray
For Christ's Sake: Jesus Christ Superstar and The Last Temptation of Christ
Not In Front of the Children: Inappropriate Kids Movies
Deeper into Ozploitation: Next of Kin and Fair Game
Between the Wars: Babylon Berlin Series 1&2 on DVD
Hard Luck Story: Detour on Blu-ray
Oh, What Happened to You? The Likely Lads on Blu-ray
Killer Apps: The Rise of the Evil 60s Supercomputers
   
 
  Sabu Buy this film here.
Year: 2002
Director: Takashi Miike
Stars: Tatsuya Fujiwara, Satoshi Tsumabuki, Tomoko Tabata, Kazue Fukiishi, Kenji Sawada, Naomasa Rokudaira, Tatsuo Yamada
Genre: Drama, Historical
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Eiji and Sabu are childhood friends in rural Japan of the 17th century. As a young adult, Eiji is sent to an island workcamp for three years as punishment for the theft of a gold cloth. He insists he innocent and becomes quiet and withdrawn in the prison camp, picking up a variety of enemies in the process. Sabu continues to visit him, but Eiji is increasingly unwilling to see him.

Sabu was directed for Japanese TV by Takashi Miike, the man better known for gore-drenched exploitations favourites like Ichi the Killer, Audition and Visitor Q. If nothing else, it proves that Miike is a talented craftsman as well as connoisseur of splatter - this is a slow, sensitive drama with an emphasis on character. It's beautifully shot, filled with gliding camerawork and carefully constructed shots, and some the imagery – the opening shot a of a girl hanging above a river, a near riot on a rain-drenched night-time beach – lingers in the mind after the film has finished.

Unfortunately, it’s also a bit of stodgy watch. Miike REALLY takes his time to tell this story, which isn’t in itself a bad thing; no one could ever have accused, say, Ozu of rushing his observations of Japanese life, and films like Tokyo Story remain utterly fascinating. The problem here is that none of it is very interesting, and there simply isn’t enough plot to fill a two-hour movie. Neither Eiji or Sabu are particularly likeable characters - we presume that Eiji is innocent, but he's so miserable throughout that after while you start thinking that society might be better off without his mopey face. And Sabu himself is even worse – a simpering drip so obsessed with his friend that it borders on stalking.

Tatsuya Fujiwara (best known for his role in the Battle Royale films) and Satoshi Tsumabuki try their best, but there's little they can do with these characters. More intruiging is their relationship with Osue (Kazue Fukiishi), a girl from their childhood who has grown up to be an object of desire for both men, but again, this story ultimately goes nowhere. As an exercise in proving his critics wrong, Sabu works just fine; it's just a bit of a chore for the viewer.
Reviewer: Daniel Auty

 

This review has been viewed 6286 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Takashi Miike  (1960 - )

Japan’s most controversial director, notorious for his dauntingly prolific output and willingness to push the boundaries of taste. Miike started working as an assistant director in the late 80s, before moving into making straight-to-video thrillers in 1991. He made his feature debut in 1995 with the violent cop thriller Shinjuku Triad Society, and since then has averaged around seven films year.

His best best known pictures are the deeply twisted love story Audition, the blackly comic gorefest Ichi the Killer, cannibal comedy musical Happiness of the Katakuris and the often surreal Dead or Alive trilogy. Films such as The Bird People in China and Sabu showed a more restrained side. With later works such as samurai epic 13 Assassins and musical For Love's Sake he showed no signs of slowing down, reaching his hundredth movie Blade of the Immortal in 2017. A true original, Miike remains one of the most exciting directors around.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
  Rachel Franke
Andrew Pragasam
Enoch Sneed
  Derrick Smith
Paul Shrimpton
Darren Jones
George White
   

 

Last Updated: