User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 89 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 83 out of 89
  2. Negative: 3 out of 89

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  1. Jun 30, 2014
    10
    Battle Royale: 10/10: Another classic is born. A fantastic combination of classical music and ultra-violence like a Japanese Clockwork Orange. Here is one Japanese film the major studios will not be remaking anytime soon.

    The plot consists of a junior high school class sent to a deserted island, given weapons that vary in usefulness, and are ordered to kill each other. Oh and they have
    those exploding collars that are ubiquitous in sci-fi films today so if they don't kill all their classmates everyone dies.

    The actors are actual kids and the film turns the bloody up to eleven. Add in child suicide, child prostitution, patricide, and worst of all basketball and you have yourself a winner.

    Battle Royale falls solidly in the category of Dawn of the Dead or Kill Bill where it transcends its obvious pulp and horror appeal and says larger things about life as a whole.

    But who am I kidding non-stop action, hot chicks in schoolgirl outfits, very dark humor and a great classical music score. Kind of like She's All That if Freddy Prinze Jr. killed a classmate every two minutes then had his head blown off by remote control. Throw in Anna Paquin dismembering Rachael Leigh Cooke with a fondue fork and that should give you the picture.

    Man that movie would ruleā€¦ Sorry went all fan boy there for a minute. Battle Royale has deep things to say about society and is an important landmark film. It is also a great movie if you like this kind of thing you sick bastard.
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  2. Jun 2, 2014
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Astonishing psychological thriller. Highly entertaining and certainly deserves the praise. One must have a whole lot of bravery and courage to watch this film, as it contains many disturbing scenes, but what I like about this film is how Kinji Fukasaku, the director executed this film.

    A perfect example of true action and sacrifice, I have not seen such a perfect execution of such a terrific and horrifying plot. Battle Royale focuses on the near future, where countries around the world, in which have been somehow intervened by the west, follows the 'Battle Royale Act'. Set in Modern Day Japan, the act presents itself every year to a group of students who are set to have the task of killing each other, until the last person survives.

    An act to repudiate western countries laws, they choose to defy the lives of others, by kidnapping children and sending them to war with each other. Noriko has nobody to trust except for her close classmate, Shuyu Nanahara, in which both of them fight side by side to overcome impending danger. The success of the film had to rely on how the director chooses to focus on all the subordinate characters almost equally with the exception of Noriko and Shuyu, as they were the main characters of the film.

    It is a dream for a director to be able to achieve such a film with a moderate budget like that. If you haven't watched it, you should go rent it, because this is what action movies are suppose to be like. Kinji Fukasaku is like the Japanese Quentin Tarantino, and for this he deserves a cookie.

    My only doubts would lay on the fact that the ending was a bit iffy with the two so called fugitives of the state, with them popping out of downtown Tokyo. I understand the budget of the film, and so I won't whine too much about the ending.

    Overall, this film is something that would stick in my mind for the next few years, just something very relevant to our modern day society. People often mistaken the meaning behind this film, thus arguing that this film was totally horrid. I believe that this film sends the message to young viewers about the lack of empathy we have for others. Our society is changing, and by that, we need to realize that we are evolving into a self-embodiment world. This film provides the basis for us to reflect upon ourselves; to see the discreet message and how it is somehow related to us.
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  3. Jan 31, 2014
    9
    Well worth the time to watch this flick and good chance you will watch it again. SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Gooooooooooooooooooooooood.
  4. Nov 3, 2013
    9
    Battle Royale contains some really excellent acting from its child stars. The film is overall incredibly well done and each character and their relationships are portrayed very thoroughly.
  5. Oct 5, 2013
    9
    One of the best films of all time, thrilling, entertaining, controversial and exciting all at the same time. This makes Hunger Games looks like a kitten compared to this royal lion of a movie.
  6. Jun 25, 2013
    9
    Battle Royale is again a film that proves Japanese Cinema is force to contend with...

    Based on a controversial Manga (Which I've never read), The story is about how in this day and age the old japan is dying and the youth are rebelling and viciously attacking their elders, in order to teach them something (Again i don't know what this is suppose to teach) every year a class of 40-odd
    students are kidnapped, taken to an island and forced to kill each other until one is standing, also they are wearing bracelets around their neck which if they do not succeed in this task (they have 3 days) all of those bracelets will explode.

    Kinda like "Lord of the Flies" if Japan had to take a stab at it. two things make you wonder...

    1. What does this prove?

    2. What did the consent forms for this trip look like? (I Hereby give my Son/Daughter e.t.c).

    Suddenly when the game kicks off nothing matters, what sounds like an absolute bloodbath (which it is) actually becomes a very well thought out movie.

    We see kids that band together, go solo, commit suicide but the main thing is that we actually get to see "the kids", the film flesh's each one out and every character has been very well though out and each have a great personality

    The pacing is brilliant, famous Classical music is heard throughout the movie as well as a couple of obvious japanese songs, and the actors are brilliant as these Students.

    It's actually STUNNING how good every child actor in this movie is, everyone is doing something and it works...

    One of the saddest scenes that really get to me is "The lighthouse" Scene, not to give to much away but it shows such an awesome coalition of people coming together, "True Friends", that ultimately ends up in Tragedy...

    Final Verdict: Tarantino said this is his favourite movie to come out since he became a director... GOOD CHOICE, because really you have to see this, it was nominated BEST PICTURE at the Japan Academy Awards.

    But Ultimately "Battle Royale" is superb Movie that is truly deserving of the statement "Only In Japan".
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  7. Jun 17, 2013
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Unlike my previous review of Hunger games; which I felt was an okay experience, but just was a bit confusing and didn't give a credible reason for its actions. This however is better in multiple ways. For starters this has a reason for its doings, which is that it's a government action to deal with the school issues of Japan. You see Japan is going through some difficult times with its school system, so I guess that the government wants to reduce the violent actions in schools by randomly choosing schools and then classes in those schools and putting them on a remote island to kill each other. Make sense to me. Okay so it might not make as much sense, but this is more serious in its own way. For starters I like how this one isn't focused on its visuals, but rather the psychological torment the characters are going through. For instance, the students in this movie make decisions that are all reasonable, like a couple kills themselves because they don't want to participate in this cruel act, some form an alliance to survive, some do or die because they want to live, and even a few who do it for the thrill. Now all that sounds deep and thoughtful right? Well most of the times it works, but it could've been improved if we knew the side characters a bit more, but it's still good. The performances are okay, no one really shines In this picture. Except maybe the teacher who's in charge of the Battle Royale, he was fun to watch, with his somewhat carefree attitude and yet doing these vicious acts that would make others cringe at least. Now what I love most about this movie is how well they got this idea down. Showing the psychological damage of this government action on multiple students and how they react to it, the violence feels more real, and the ending is a great conclusion to this story. Expand
  8. Apr 9, 2013
    7
    If you are a fan of Asian action, horror, or sci-fi, this is on your "must" list. If you are merely a fan of dystopian fiction, then you should probably see it as well. If you are unaware of the plot, a quick view on Wikipedia will help you out. Basically, The Greatest Game meets 1984.

    This is WAY better than a certain unnamed American pretender...but not nearly as engaging as the
    book. I love me some Beat Takeshi, but his character felt a little wrong here. If you haven't read the book, do so it should take you a couple of hours at the most. But watch the movie first. Expand
  9. Mar 6, 2013
    10
    Battle Royale is truly one of my favorite films of all time. It's exciting, sad and full of half hidden messages about society, culture and the value of innocence. Better yet, for a film so soaked in blood thirsty action scenes, Battle Royale comes off feeling distinctly 'anti-violence'.
  10. Feb 23, 2013
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. its a pretty hard concept to get over. A class of grade 9 students, whats that? 15 years old are all forced to fight to the death. If you are able to get passed that then you'll be treated to a very violent and entertaining film. You get to watch as the ticker counts down 41 students as the die one by one. There are a bunch of flash backs and a little bit of a introduction that gives us a bit of an idea who these kids are and what their personalities are before we have to watch them alll die. Its quite brutal and relentless in its violence(especially the scene where everything is being explained to the class and some of the students are used as demonstrations to how things work) but also has a very small amount of cheesyness to it. Some of the people get shot a bunch of times and then hop back to their feet to fight some more. This could be overlooked if it happened once but it happened a few times and became laughable after a while. Still though the brutality overshadows the comedy and its a very dark yet entertaining movie. Expand
  11. Feb 20, 2013
    8
    There is no denying the raw violence and gruesome visuals portrayed in "Battle Royale." While the students seriously have their priorities mixed up, this film is simply fun. "Battle Royale" is sure to go down in history as a cult classic.
  12. Jan 28, 2013
    8
    Bloody violent and exciting. It's extremely entertaining and will be an instant classic for anyone that it a fan of Asian horror/suspense films. A lot of people like to say that it's exactly like the Hunger Games but well it's not. Battle Royal focuses more on the psychology of making kids kill each other and less on the character development of it's leads. This is both a plus and a minus in my opinion. Yeah this movie is good and yes I would recommend it but to answer the question of "Is it better than Then Hunger Games" I'd say that completely depends on your taste in movies. They're both good films in my opinion but when you watch this film judge it as it's own film and don't try to compare it to the Hunger Games the entire time! Expand
  13. Oct 8, 2012
    9
    where to start,this is absolutely a thrilling teenage killing masterpiece by Kinji Fukasaku. Best thing is that all the melodramatic turns between teenagers about their friendship,love and sacrifice,quite make it as semi psycho-thriller. the violent and breathtaking scenes with political set-up really steals the show. this is first japanese movie i have ever seen,feeling like it is the best. I always knew japan is a great country but never knew that they are this good with cinema.now i am gonna search over and watch every japanese good movie. Thumbs up to all the cast and the crew who made this. 素晴らしい仕事の連中 Expand
  14. Sep 13, 2012
    4
    Neznam kako gledaoci i kriticari smatraju ovaj film pod "ozbiljnim" ?!? meni je ovo nalik na neku japansku parodiju i sprdačinu ..ko je pogledao film,nadam se da ce shvatiti zasto to mislim..
  15. Jul 8, 2012
    7
    I admit that during and directly after viewing this film I didn
  16. May 31, 2012
    10
    This is a great film by director Kinji Fukasaku. This is a must see for fans of Asian horror genre. The story is fantastic and shows how quickly the human condition can decay and decisions that sometimes have to be made to preserve your life.
  17. May 28, 2012
    10
    So kids you know Hunger Games, well this film blows it out of the water. This will go down as a cult classic. Beware your parents might flip kinda hardcore, not your standard hollywood twilight show here. Be sure to see the original as all knockoffs are crap.
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 7 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 7
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 7
  3. Negative: 1 out of 7
  1. Reviewed by: Sara Stewart
    May 25, 2012
    75
    This one's a thoroughly campy exercise in teen melodrama and Grand Guignol gore (how gory? it's one of Quentin Tarantino's favorite movies), the other (The Hunger Games) a straight-faced action picture.
  2. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    May 24, 2012
    90
    American fans of "The Hunger Games" may not embrace - or even be permitted to see - Battle Royale, which is too bad. It is in many ways a better movie and in any case a fascinating companion, drawn from a parallel cultural universe. It is a lot uglier and also, perversely, a lot more fun.
  3. Reviewed by: Robert Koehler
    May 24, 2012
    90
    Departing from two decades' worth of domestic and personal dramas and returning to his roots as Japan's maestro of mayhem, Kinji Fukasaku has delivered a brutal punch to the collective solar plexus with one of his most outrageous and timely films.