Plot: The sequel of Takashi Miike's Crows : Episode 0 , which hit the top of the charts both in box-office and in DVD releases, throws audiences right back into the hyper-stylized world of high school gang violence.
Takiya Genji and his newly formed gang, GPS, have successfully taken over Suzuran and overthrown their former leader, Serizawa. He soon realises however, that reaching the top is tough, but staying there is even tougher. Unity is fast deteriorating as inner turmoil begins to grow within the grounds and loyalty crumbles. Genji is soon beset by a malaise as he doubts his ability as a leader and fighter. Meanwhile, a certain rival school declares all-out war on Suzuran and this conflict will test Genji’s ability to rise up to the challenge.
While Crows: Edisode 0 was based on comic book Crows by Hiroshi Takahashi, sequel inherited charachters from it's spin-off Worst.
The final battle in the sequel involved 500 gang members.
«The action is, accordingly, more realistic, right down to the gory-looking makeup and bone-crunching sound effects. Also, the group battle scenes, with hundreds of punks whaling on each other, have a scale and impact reminiscent of the gaudier clashes in "Braveheart," though no one gets their head lopped off with a sword. ... Miike directs with an energy, velocity and cheeky bravado that are pure punk. »
«Fight details are sometimes obscured by tight framing and jerky camera movements, but the velocity of the action makes for an exhilarating cinematic dance. When the cartoon violence seems to have reached saturation point, Miike jolts the narrative with unexpected directorial flourishes to give the film its second, third and even fourth winds.»
«... maybe that's one of the bigger flaws of the movie: character's development has been reduced to the minimum expression (and it's not like they were Shakespearean characters to begin with), and some of the returning roles seem a little too forced as they don't play any major role in the movie. ... Miike directs epic fights scenes with energy and steady hand, making a wonderful use of the sound to add even more power to the blows. »
«Once again, Miike proves his firm grip on the tone of his material. Taken too literally, it is easy for the fantasy world of manga to appear too cartoonish even in a live-action adaptation. But Miike captures perfectly the macho-coolness of his punk characters, never allowing their ultra-serious posturing to descend into caricature. He even manages to inject some well-placed instances of deadpan humour within, and the result is great fun.»
«Thankfully the action sequences get interspersed and are brutally solid throughout, which naturally is the draw of this fantasy film. It's surprising too that for all the simplicity in its storyline, it still managed to extend itself to more than two hours, which flew by especially when you're having fun as observers to major fights. The perfect antidote after a stressful day at work!»
«Sadly, Crows Zero 2 is a pale shadow of its erstwhile predecessor. Its nice packaging dresses up an irrefutably poorly-manufactured product, thus confining it to place reserved for disappointing sequels.»
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