Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

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Ribs
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Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#1 Post by Ribs » Wed May 02, 2018 12:35 pm

Starring original Diamond Guy, Jo Shishido, Seijun Suzuki's Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards! is a hard hitting, rapid-fire yakuza film that redefined the Japanese crime drama.

Detective Tajima (Shishido) is tasked with tracking down a consignment of stolen firearms, as the investigation progresses things take an anarchic, blood-drenched grudge match.

Rapidly paced, darkly funny, and extremely stylish, Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards! is unlike anything seen before and rightly deserves its cult status. Suzuki's send up of post-war greed would go on to cement his domestic and international status as one of the leading directors to come out of Japan.

• High Definition (1080p) Blu-ray presentation
• DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0
• Newly translated optional English subtitles
• Interview with historian and Japanese cinema expert Tony Rayns
• Gallery of original production stills
• Theatrical trailer
• Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Matthew Griffin

Image

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Ribs
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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go To Hell, Bastards!

#2 Post by Ribs » Wed May 02, 2018 12:35 pm

Is it not really weird that they don't put Suzuki's name on the cover?

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Gregory
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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#3 Post by Gregory » Wed May 02, 2018 1:01 pm

Funny how Arrow's description resembles a paraphrasing of the old Kino one:
Assigned a standard Yakuza film in the hardboiled vein pioneered at Japan’s famed Nikkatsu Studios, director Seijun Suzuki (Branded to Kill) and his frequent leading man Jo Shishido used 1963’s Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards! to flip the Japanese gangster film genre on its ear.

A rapid fire gun heist, credits with an infectious jazz pop score, and a wide-screen close-up of a burning car announce Detective Bureau 2-3 as the film that would both lampoon and redefine Asian crime films for an irreverent new decade of garish panache and ultra-violent cool. The story follows police detective Tajima (Shishido), who, tasked with tracking down stolen firearms, turns an underworld grudge into a bloodbath -- while Suzuki transforms a colorful potboiler into an on-target send-up of cultural colonialism and post-war greed...

Anarchic, breakneck paced, darkly comic, and stylish to the extreme, Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards! was a movie unlike anything audiences had ever seen. It would cement Suzuki’s fervent popularity at home and heralded his imminent cult status worldwide.

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DeprongMori
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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#4 Post by DeprongMori » Tue Apr 02, 2019 8:51 pm

For me, this has probably been the most disappointing Seijun Suzuki release from Arrow, for reasons akin to the old Catskills joke: “It wasn’t very good. And in such small portions.”

This property was originally intended to be a series, but only two films were made — this one, and Tantei jimusho mijusan - zeni to onna ni otoko (Detective Bureau 2-3: A Man Weak to Money and Women), both in 1963, and both starring Jo Shishido. The first was, of course, directed by Suzuki, and the second by Nozomu Yasane.

Though the movie is far from Suzuki’s best (even far from good), the release could have been redeemed by including the second film as a supplement, which would have been a perfect excuse for another Shishido title that wouldn’t necessary warrant release otherwise, and would provide “The Complete” Detective Bureau 2-3 series. Not including it is understandable for any number of reasons. Less forgivable is Tony Rayns insisting throughout the special features that only one film ever got made. Overall, it felt like a really lazy release, unlike all the other Suzuki and Nikkatsu releases Arrow has put out.

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#5 Post by Michael Kerpan » Tue Apr 02, 2019 9:28 pm

I found the film entertaining enough -- even if not equal to Suzuki's best work.

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#6 Post by colinr0380 » Wed Apr 03, 2019 3:35 am

DeprongMori, I wonder if this is a similar kind of situation to the Young Thugs series, in that the second and third entries in the series directed by Takashi Miike (Young Thugs from 1997 and Nostalgia from 1998) got released on DVD in the mid 2000s through Artsmagic label, but the first film, Boys Be Ambitious from 1996, directed by Kazuyuki Izutsu, never was! Presumably only the 'name value' of Takashi Miike got Young Thugs and Nostalgia released at all (and even then as 'minor' works in his filmography for completists of the director), but the line was drawn at putting out an entry without that sellable director's name behind it.

I'm a bit torn regarding these kind of situations. I would rather have something than nothing, and perhaps seeing part of the series and being vocal about wanting to see more might inspire a release of a 'complete series' collection one day. But it is frustrating to see only part of a series rather than the whole thing, whoever it was directed by, since really the material (especially if entries in a series impact on others, character and plot-wise) should be considered more important initially than just who created the work.

There is also the possibility that you might be better informed on the Detective Bureau 2-3 series than Tony Rayns and Arrow were!

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#7 Post by tenia » Wed Apr 03, 2019 3:51 am

Michael Kerpan wrote:
Tue Apr 02, 2019 9:28 pm
I found the film entertaining enough -- even if not equal to Suzuki's best work.
Same here. I found it thoroughly entertaining, and have usually quite a blast rewatching it (though I prefer Youth of the Beast).

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#8 Post by dda1996a » Wed Apr 03, 2019 4:07 am

Is there a boring Suzuki film? Isn't that an oxymoron? I still have a lot to watch from him, this included, but the guy knows how to enliven even the silliest of narratives

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#9 Post by tenia » Wed Apr 03, 2019 4:17 am

I found Voice Without a Shadow to be particularly dull.

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#10 Post by dda1996a » Wed Apr 03, 2019 6:07 am

I haven't watched all his early films, but I'd say once he found his groove there rarely is a dull moment. Doesn't mean the films are great, but they are fun.

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#11 Post by colinr0380 » Wed Apr 03, 2019 8:50 am

The one problem with Suzuki is that if introduced to his work, as most in the West have, by Tokyo Drifter and Branded To Kill, both being stylistically extreme and the latter getting him fired from Nikkatsu, then you are inevitably left with the works that managed to be released without causing such extreme reactions!

I should admit that I am in the camp of not having yet seen a boring Suzuki film either, though still have Voice Without A Shadow and a number of the other early films in my to watch pile for the moment!

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#12 Post by Michael Kerpan » Wed Apr 03, 2019 9:26 am

I didn't get the Diamond Guys box set -- and they didn't show Voice Without a Shadow at the huge Suzuki retrospective at the Harvard Film Archive (so far as I recall) -- so I haven't seen it (and may never see it since the box set is OOP). :-(

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#13 Post by kuzine » Wed Apr 03, 2019 9:54 am

FWIW Voice Without a Shadow was my favourite of all the movies in the Diamond Guys box sets (It seems Amazon.com still has vol.1 in stock MK...)

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tenia
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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#14 Post by tenia » Wed Apr 03, 2019 10:15 am

The Vol.2 seems pretty much in stock everywhere, but the vol. 1 can currently be purchased on Amazon.co.uk through the third-party seller Rarewaves. Otherwise, remember there also has been a US release, which is currently in stock on Amazon.com !
Both US releases can also be currently purchased on Wow HD.

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#15 Post by Michael Kerpan » Wed Apr 03, 2019 11:58 am

Thanks!

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#16 Post by DeprongMori » Wed Apr 03, 2019 12:52 pm

For those looking to catch Arrow releases streaming, Amazon Prime includes many of them free with membership, including Suzuki’s Voice Without a Shadow as well as many films from the “Diamond Guys” and “Early Suzuki” box sets.

Unfortunately, while Prime offers Kagero-za and Yumeji from The Taisho Trilogy, they are not currently offering Zigeunerweisen — the film that bowled me over and upended my understanding of Suzuki, which had been informed by his Nikkatsu films.

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#17 Post by DeprongMori » Wed Apr 03, 2019 12:58 pm

An analogy to what the Detective Bureau 2-3 release might have been is Arrow’s release of Branded to Kill, which included:
Trapped in Lust [Aiyoku no wana] (1973) – A delirious roman porno re-imagining of Branded to Kill from Atsushi Yamatoya, one of Branded to Kill’s screenwriters and Suzuki’s regular collaborators
It wasn’t a Suzuki film, but as a related film it shed a lot of light on the trends and practices in the Japanese film industry of the time.

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#18 Post by dda1996a » Wed Apr 03, 2019 1:07 pm

I love Branded, hated, hated that related film.

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#19 Post by senseabove » Wed Apr 03, 2019 3:03 pm

I've still got a lot to get through in the box sets, but of the ones I've seen, my favorite was definitely The Boy Who Came Back, the only one of those I've seen that has hints of how far he'd push incongruous stylistic choices later. Unlike the others in the set, that one has definite shots and scenes that are distinctly memorable—when the main character hides by the bridge, the jazz club, the jail cell conversation. I liked Voice Without a Shadow, too, though I can't say I remember much about it beyond liking it... The only one I've watched that was definitely disappointing was The Wind of Youth Group... And Smashing the O-Line was the first Suzuki I saw, the first they played in the BAMPFA retrospective a while back, and if it isn't a great one, it was enough to get me going to as much of the rest of the series as I could, where, similar to DeprongMori, I fell hard for Ziegeunerweisen.

That Trapped in Lust bonus was the reason I picked up the Arrow instead of the Criterion, and I also hated it. A few memorable moments, but not in a good way. I wish I'd gone with the Criterion, so I'd have the region A version. If anyone wants to trade...

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Re: Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards!

#20 Post by DeprongMori » Wed Apr 03, 2019 5:11 pm

dda1996a wrote:
Wed Apr 03, 2019 1:07 pm
I love Branded, hated, hated that related film.
Yeah, it was an awful film, but I was glad to have gotten a sense of that particular strand of Japanese filmmaking. It was a great context for it.

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