For many, middle school was the worst time of their lives. Sexual tension, cat fights, pretense of friendship, bullying. Secrets, shame, awkwardness. It's all there. It is, however, also the first time people start to take control of their lives, and not just stand up for themselves, but also for the things they find important to them. In addition, it is when most have their first real crush. And there's something about first loves that, despite how ridiculous and fragile they often are, makes it real and lasting in one's mind.
And now, take this nostalgic moment to remember all those young, savage yet innocent friends and foes from in middle school. Give them each a weapon (don't forget one for yourself), and start killing. Because there can only be one.
Nope, not that movie.
Battle Royale, the cult classic Japanese film, is not actually legally banned in the
One can still get the bootleg version of the film in the
After the movie, one does think about (well, at least I thought about) if you can kill your best friend. What if he/she is coming at you with an ax? What if he/she is coming at you with an ax, and your girlfriend stands behind you? And, even if you are able to answer yes or no with certainly, if the situation does happen, would you actually be the person you always thought you were?
The thing that I truly enjoy about Battle Royale, is that hardly any of the students are "nameless meat". You're introduced to near everyone, with flashbacks or individual goals and dreams, before they need to make the decision to kill or to be killed. Some characters you only get a line or two from them, but those lines, and the action that follows it, go a long way of revealing who they are. In general, I'm actually quite impressed with it.
The two actors that American audiences have the highest chance of recognizing are Chiaki Kuriyama, who was Gogo in Kill Bill, and Tatsuya Fujiwara, who played Light Yagami in the two giant Death Note movies. The first 30 seconds of the film is the hardest part to swallow. The prologue, or, the reason why Battle Royale is happening, makes little to no sense. But if you can chill out, sit back, and say, yeah why not, this is