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General info
Original title: Sabu (さぶ)
Country: Japan
Year: 2002
Genre: Action, Drama
IMDB Rating: 6.6 272 votes
Plot: Sabu is a television drama from Japan directed by profilic director Takashi Miike that is based on a classic novel by Yamamoto Shugoro. It provides an impressive exploration of the depths and complexities of friendship and loyalty between two childhood friends who mature into harsher realities. Director Miike Takashi is undoubtedly notorious for a certain genre of film, but his direction of the much more traditional Sabu is flawless.

Set in 19th century Japan, Sabu follows two childhood buddies - Sabu (Satoshi Tsumabuki) and Eiji (Tatsuya Fujiwara) - whose friendship is put to the test when one of them is accused of stealing. Eiji is summarily sent to a work camp, where he is forced to adopt a more violent persona in order to survive. Sabu refuses to believe Eiji is guilty of the crime, and though Eiji won't let Sabu visit him, Sabu begins looking into the matter with the hopes of clearing his friend.
Movie info
Language: Japanese
Colormode: Color
Running time: 122

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Sabu (Sabu) trailer

Tags: Sabu, Sabu, 2002, Japanese movies, Action movies, Drama movies, asian movies

Featured reviews for

Extraordinary Movie & Video Guide, by Toni Lilja source:
«Sabu is supposedly Miike’s first Jidaigeki (period drama), although in an interview he claims to have made one before. Whether this is true or not makes no difference, Sabu is still quite an achievement in terms of visual style and acting. ... Some people may be turned off by the fact that this movie has no sex, very little violence and no characters with curious agendas, but what the movie lacks in violence is compensated by some stunning and colorful visuals, especially in the beginning. », by Nix source:
«Much of “Sabu” looks purposely like a surreal set on a soundstage, with the drab colors in stark contrast to the choice selections of primary colors sprinkled about the scene. It’s a nice film to look at, even if one may find the narrative to be just a bit plodding at times, and the plot to be uninventive.»
DVD Verdict Review source:
«If nothing else, Sabu is further proof that director Takashi Miike is not only one of the most prolific directors in the world, but that he is also shockingly versatile. Certainly, this film is not likely to satisfy those that are expecting something like Audition or the Dead or Alive trilogy, but it reveals a more sensitive side of everyone's favorite Japanese cult movie director.»
Sarudama source:
«I can strongly recommend this film for those who enjoy classic Japanese drama. Character studies and traditional (japanese) morals are the predominant issues here. Under the direction of Miike and with the skill of his polished cast, this one is indeed worth watching.»

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Miike, TakashiMIIKE Takashi
Asahi National Broadcasting Company
Nagoya Broadcasting Network (NBN)


Fujiwara, TatsuyaFUJIWARA Tatsuya
as Eiji
Tsumabuki, SatoshiTSUMABUKI Satoshi
as Sabu
Tabata, TomokoTABATA Tomoko
as Onobu
Fukiishi, KazueFUKIISHI Kazue
as Osue
Sawada, KenjiSAWADA Kenji
as Okayasu
as Matsuda
Yamada, TatsuoYAMADA Tatsuo
as Ryojiro Kojima
Arizono, YoshikiARIZONO Yoshiki
as Yohei
Horibe, KeisukeHORIBE Keisuke
Endo, KenichiENDO Kenichi
as Giichi
Musaka, NaomasaMUSAKA Naomasa
as Osono
Osugi, RenOSUGI Ren
as Heizo (as Ren Oosugi)
Tamaki, HiroshiTAMAKI Hiroshi
as Kinta
Tanaka, YojiTANAKA Yoji
as Toku

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