Kon’nichiwa, minasan, Makkusu, Maiku, eiga, soshite watashitachi no sirīzu `u~ōku za dāku sutorīto’ e yōkoso. Ok, that was supposed to say “Hello, folks, welcome to Max, Mike, Movies and our series, Walk the Dark Street.” However, apparently what it actually says is: “Hello, everyone. Welcome to Max, Mike, the film, and this series, Walking on Dark Paths.” At least, that’s how I hope it translates. If it’s something worse, I deeply apologize and it’s Mike’s fault. I kind of like the name Makkusu, though . . . And why are we butchering the language of the Land of the Rising Sun? Because that’s the origin point of this week’s film, “Tokyo Drifter.” The “Tokyo” part is kind of a giveaway. This is a groovy, swinging scene from the heart of the 1960’s, which proves the 60’s were the 60’s, no matter what part of the world you were in. But how well does this Japanese New Wave film handle the genre of film noir? Slip into your best powder-blue suit, tune up your harmonica, and join your bros/pals Makkusu and Maiku to find out.
Poll question: what is your favorite example of one country successfully making a movie in a genre associated with a different country? An American samurai movie? An Italian cowboy movie? A Russo-Finnish Sinbad movie?