KAIJI | Movie Release, Showtimes & Trailer | Cinema Online
Movie Details

KAIJI

"Kaiji: The Ultimate Gambler" is an exciting psychological thriller starring Tatsuya Fujiwara as Kaiji, man forced to enter a deadly gambling competition aboard a cruise ship, to erase a large financial debt. Based on Nobuyuki Fukumoto`s hit manga series which has sold over 11 million copies, Kaiji is a 26 year-old job-hopping bum who suddenly finds himself riddled in debt after a shadowy loan company informs him that he is responsible for a loan taken by his friend (who has since gone missing) and whom he casually co-signed as a loan guarantor for!

Language: Japanese
Subtitle: NA
Classification: PG13
Release Date: 8 Apr 2010
Genre: Action / Thriller
Running Time: 2 Hours 14 Minutes
Distributor: United International Pictures
Cast: Tatsuya Fujiwara, Kenichi Matsuyama, Yuki Amami, Teruyuki Kagawa
Director: Toya Sato
Format: 35MM

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Review
Writer: Nur Safina Othman

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Watch this if you liked: "God of Gamblers", "All For The Winner", “Poker King”

Perhaps not many know that most Japanese movies out there are adapted from successful anime or manga, the example at hand being this new Toya Sato ("Gokusen The Movie") release. Indeed "Kaiji" reunites the cast of "Death Note" which is adapted from Noboyuki Fukumoto's wildly popular manga series about the art of gambling that has reportedly sold millions of copies worldwide.

Tatsuya Fujiwara plays the lead role as Kaiji Ito, a guy forced to join a gambling competition on a cruise ship to settle his debts and stand a chance of changing his life forever.

Unfortunately, the director has failed to present the movie effectively due to pacing problems and a plot that takes too long to get deeper. The duration of the movie (over two hours) doesn't help either. However, although there is little information about the character presented for the benefit of first-time audiences, watching Kaiji as he goes through his challenges (Scissors Paper Stone Card Battle, Steel Beam Crossing Death Race and E-Card Strategy Game) can be very exciting. These scenes provide the best moments of the film.

Although Tatsuya Fujiwara plays the titular "Kaiji", it is the performance of veteran actor Teruyuki Kagawa ("Tokyo Sonata") who impresses as the villain Yukio Tonegawa. Maybe there are fans who are happy with the appearance of Kenichi Maysuyama as Makato Sahara although it was for a short while.

This film may not be everyone's cup of tea but it has reportedly collected an estimated US$ 24 million in just a month of screening in Japan alone. It is no wonder then, "Kaiji", touted as the best of 2009, has gotten the green light for a sequel that is aiming for release next year.

Cinema Online, 22 March 2010

   
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Classification
U - General viewing for all ages
P12 - Parental guidance required for audiences under the age of 12.
13 - For audiences aged 13 years old and above.
16 - For audiences aged 16 years old and above.
18 - For 18+ with elements for mature audiences
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