Imagine THE WARRIORS as an all-rap musical set in Japan. TOYKO TRIBES is That FILM! 7/4/15 #NYAFF 10pm
Imagine THE WARRIORS as an all-rap musical set in Japan. TOYKO TRIBES is That FILM! #NYAFF
TOKYO TRIBES represents the highlight of the New York Asian Film Festival 2015 for sheer Fun. A female protagonist who can leap and fight better than any man plays this film’s canny substitute for a damsel-in-distress. Every neighborhood territory has its own theme song and rap style with active fighting participants. There are antagonists in the style of SHO’ NUFF from THE LAST DRAGON. The film does not lack a sense of surreal humor. This film is MUCH better than THE WARRIORS.
Not that you are really coming to hear an all rap musical, really. You will not hear Kendrick Lamar, you will not hear THE ROOTS. At the time of the film BEAT STREET (1984?), Afrika Bambatta was HUGE in Japan. A great deal of that legacy survives in the music styles in this film. So, it represents a throwback to old school rap. The fighting, kicks, and flips similarly offer an affectionate but lively homage to an earlier style of fighting.
But the production design harkens to Baz Luhrman in the density of detail. The gangs and crowds offer a Cecil B. DeMille quality. The color palette, cinematography and editing are top-notch. And this is a MUSICAL with nary a “spoken” word, so to speak.
It is impossible to spoil the plot. If you have seen THE WARRIORS you know the plot. A small group has to get from Point A to Point B, fighting multiple sets of antagonists all the way back to Point B. Throw in Boy-meets-Girl along the way. That’s the plot. But that’s not the point of the film by any means.
Admittedly, THE WARRIORS is a Guilty Pleasure (with wonderful set-pieces establishing the visual dexterity of Walter Hill). Seeing TOKYO TRIBES will represent a Moment of PRIDE. Membership in the TOKYO TRIBES clan gives one Style Points.
SEE it on the BIG SCREEN. Dive In.
TOKYO TRIBES screens July 4, 2015 10pm at Lincoln Center as part of the NYAFF 2015.
It also screens at NYC’s SVA Theatre
No comments yet.