Visually sumptuous, from the popping color schemes to the sharp cinematography, Rageaholic is a feast for the eyes. With a screenplay that begs your attention between redemption and revenge.
Rageaholic has a distinct three-act storytelling structure. Act one finds Detective Fukama in a drug and alcohol-assisted haze of aggression. When his behavior makes for negative PR for the force and the local community of Fujimi, he is shipped off to the United States for some unique rehabilitation.
Act two reinstates Fukama as a semi-detective into a state-monitored Fujimi. Acclimating to this new environment proves to be a challenge. The visual shift is noticeable as the neon lights are replaced by signs and banners reminding everyone that Big Brother is watching. The community watch is drunk with power.
Act three; those driven from society now reside in squalid tent cities but thrive in their kinship. Confronted with how he ultimately fits into the grander scheme of control, Fukama must find the balance between good and evil to set things right. The depraved violence that ensues feels right. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to wincing and a lot of cheering.
Performances are impressive, and the score ranges from jarring to amusing. Each tonal shift reinvigorates the audience’s interest in the story. There is no time to become complacent. American audiences will immediately draw parallels to capitalism and surveillance issues. A film about abuse, power, and retribution, I have never seen anything quite like Rageaholic. The finale is straight-up bananas.
The drama/action film RAGEAHOLIC opens today (August 26th) in Japanese cinemas.
RAGEAHOLIC is written and directed by Yoshiki Takahashi, and based on a story by Yuki Kobayashi (DEATH ROW FAMILY). The picture stars Yohta Kawase (SHIN GODZILLA), Aya Saiki, Ryuju Kobayashi, and Eita Okuno. It is produced by Interfilm.