Japanese filmmaker Takeshi Kitano makes an impressive American film debut as writer, director and star of this well-done mob movie. An excommunicated member of a Japanese crime family comes to the U.S. to find his little brother and finds himself in a new, lethal mob war. The scope of the film is impressive, starting quietly and slowly and then escalating to a big finish. Kitano makes a strange movie with pacing unlike anything you’ve ever seen before, and it’s not something that will be universally applauded. His technique allows for moments of major shock value, and his performance is an offbeat winner. Forget Rush Hour 2
—see this movie.