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    About This Item

    Unique ID Code: 0000028956
    Added by: DVD Reviewer
    Added on: 12/1/2002 15:01
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    Battle Royale (UK)

    8 / 10
    6 votes cast
    Rate this item
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    Could You Kill Your Best Friend?
    Certificate: 18
    Running Time: 109 mins
    Retail Price: £19.99
    Release Date:

    At the dawn of the new millennium, Japan is in a state of near-collapse. Unemployemnt is at an all-time high, and violence amongst the nation`s youth is spiralling out of control. With school children boycotting their lessons and physically abusing their teachers, a beleagured and near-defeated government decides to introduce a radical new measure: the Battle Royale Act.
    Overseen by a former teacher, Kitano (`Beat` Takeshi), and requiring that a randomly chosen school class be taken to a deserted island and forced to fight each other to the death, the Act dictates that only one pupil be allowed to survive the punishment. He or she will return, not as the victor, but as the ultimate proof of the lengths to which the government are prepared to go to curb the tide of juvenile disobediance.

    Likened to Stanley Kubrick`s A Clockwork Orange by many critics, this explosive film shocked a nation with its violent portrayal of a society in ruins.

    Special Features:
    Interactive Menus
    Scene Access
    Star and Director Filmographies
    Original Theatrical Trailer
    Stills Gallery
    Mark Wyatt Film Notes
    Trailer Reel

    Video Tracks:
    Widescreen Anamorphic 1.78:1

    Audio Tracks:
    Dolby Digital Stereo 2.0 Japanese

    Subtitle Tracks:

    Directed By:
    Kinji Fukasaku

    Written By:

    Chiaki Kuriyama
    Kou Shibasaki
    Masanobu Ando
    Taro Yamamoto
    Aki Maeda
    Tatsuya Fujiwara

    Soundtrack By:
    Masamichi Amano

    Director of Photography:
    Katsumi Yanagishima

    Hirohide Abe

    Production Designer:
    Kyôko Heya

    Masao Sato
    Masumi Okada
    Tetsu Kayama
    Akio Kamatani

    Tartan Video

    Your Opinions and Comments

    7 / 10
    This film is a very visceral and brilliant satire. On top of the sometimes disturbing violence, the school students are well portrayed as ordinary human beings caught in a terrible, extraordinary situation. As there are playground rivalries between the students and also the visible effects of a lack of trust between friends.

    The picture is not that good really and neither is the sound, but what do you expect from Tartan? The extra features are pretty much throw away.

    So, a great film on a very average disc. There is the R3 alternative which does not have an anamorphic picture but has DD/DTS 5.1 sound, removable subtitles and it is very cheap. The choice is yours!
    posted by wazza on 8/2/2002 18:07
    9 / 10
    Well where can i start?.Battle royale is a brilliant movie from the moment it starts your in for a treat.The thing that may disterb the most is the fact that it`s everyday children killing each other not adults pranching about killing each other, even the tag line (could you kill your best friend) might even disturb you.And the other thing,though be warned this film is not for the faint hearted, it has frequent lashings of violence which is often very brutal and gory.The picture isn`t that good neither is the sound quality and as for the extras? thats another question!
    posted by verhoeven on 27/6/2002 00:46
    8 / 10
    This review is for the NTSC Dolby 5.1 version.

    This release features the same packaging as the previous release, but with some small changes. Instead of the tagline "Could you kill your best friend?" at the top of the cover, it now says "NTSC 5.1 Version". It also should be noted that although the cover says "For Progressive Scan Players" this does not mean that the disc won`t play on regular dvd players. This phrase is slightly confusing and could have been phrased a bit better. The back cover omits the press quotes from the previous release and replaces them with a note on how this is an NTSC release. The final paragraph from the previous release on the description of the film is also omitted for some strange is a promo pic.

    Not suprisingly, we have the same disc art as the previous release, but with the "Survival Program" replaced by "NTSC Version".

    Anamorphic 1.85:1 Widescreen:

    Well... here it is. One of three reasons why you`ve bought or are considering buying this disc. How does the video hold up? Pretty darn well. As far as I can see, the video was sourced from the fantastic Toei dvd. The picture is absolutely stunning and leagues ahead of the previous release. The print is now completely clean and free of scratches. Black levels are now very consistant and the sharpness levels are definitely increased. Basically, if you`ve bought the previous Tartan disc, this one will be a revelation to you. This being said though, the picture still isn`t the quality of the Toei disc probably due to the fact that this disc is a DVD-5 (single layer). Because of this, the bit-rate has dropped slightly. But this is a minor flaw and one that really doesn`t deserve to be dwelled upon.

    Japanese Dolby Digital 5.1:

    Another vast, VAST improvement here. Gone is the clunkiness. Gone is the slight hissing sound. Gone is the echoeing. Instead, what we are presented with is without doubt one of the finest soundtracks on the dvd market. I still can`t get over the power of the bass in some of the scenes. Another quality addition to the disc and one which is most welcome.

    English Subtitles:

    And finally we come to the last reason why you should upgrade your disc. Newly created digital English subtitles! You just can`t find flaw in these. Always easy to read. Not a single grammatical or spelling error. What more can I say...BR with decent English digital subs! Who`d have thought that day would ever come!
    posted by Aslan on 11/9/2002 03:27
    7 / 10

    Battle Royale is in one word entertaining to say the least. The
    story is executed well with very good performances from everyone involved the best being Takeshi Kitano, cool as ever!
    The film also has lot`s of action set-pieces which are occasionally funny and occasionally extremely violent look at the light house sequence for an example.


    it`s a shame that it`s only 2.0, this film is perfect for a 5.1 transfer or even DTS.


    A little grainy at times, but other wise good.


    only trailers and filmographys a load of crap, they could have treated this with more.
    posted by the_film_king on 7/8/2003 19:58
    9 / 10
    This Review is for the Region 0 version

    2 Disk, Special Edition with Tin case

    Disk 1: The movie with extra footage put into the film and a extended ending which makes the movie longer. Also they have added more blood and gore using CGI, (dont be put off by that, its the best CGI blood i have seen in a movie)

    It has a 5.1 soundtrack (which sounds very good) with subtitles

    The movie is also widescreen anamorphic so it looks very good on a big screen.

    Disk 2: The extras. There is a Making of Battle Royale, Behind the scenes featurette, lots of other footage from press conference`s and film festivals, the original trailer and a few TV spots, Audition Footage, Special Effects Comparison, a Documentary on Battle Royale and a few other bits too, so there is loads to watch (all in Japanese with subtitles though)

    This is the best version (i think so anyway) you can get with loads of extras and more blood, plus its a damn fine movie.

    You also get a 4 page collectors book and a film negative from the movie, which is very cool.

    A must buy

    Cant wait for Battle Royale 2
    posted by Jackass on 11/8/2003 16:51