Kinji Fukasaku’s COPS VS THUGS Blu-ray/DVD Combo in May from Arrow Video US
Source: Arrow Video US, MVD Entertainment Group press release
Special Thanks to Clint Weiler
Considered by many to be director Kinji Fukasaku’s greatest single-film achievement in the yakuza genre, COPS VS THUGS (県警対組織暴力, Kenkei Tai Soshikibouryoku, 1975) was made at the height of popularity of Toei Studios’ jitsuroku boom: realistic, modern crime movies based on true stories taken from contemporary headlines. Returning to the screen after completing their BATTLES WITHOUT HONOR AND HUMANITY series together, Fukasaku joined forces once again with screenwriter Kazuo Kasahara, composer Toshiaki Tsushima and star Bunta Sugawara to create one of the crowning achievements of his career, and a hard-boiled classic which is still ranked as one of the best Japanese films of the 1970’s.
It’s 1963 in the southern Japanese city of Kurashima, and tough-as-nails detective Kuno (Sugawara) oversees a detente between the warring Kawade and Ohara gangs. Best friends with Ohara lieutenant Hirotani (Hiroki Matsukata), he understands that there are no clear lines in the underworld, and that everything is colored a different shade of gray. But when random violence interrupts the peace and an ambitious, by-the-books lieutenant (Tatsuo Umemiya) comes to town, Kuno’s fragile alliance begins to crumble. Greedy bosses and politicians alike seize the opportunity to wipe out their enemies, and Kuno faces the painful choice of pledging allegiance to his badge and keeping a promise to his brother. Echoing the great crime films of Sidney Lumet and Jean-Pierre Melville, in Fukasaku’s world, there’s no honor among thieves or lawmen alike, and the only thing that matters is personal honor and duty among friends.
Kasahara’s shattering screenplay and Fukasaku’s dynamic direction support an all-star, ensemble cast to create one of the most exciting, and deeply moving films about cops and criminals ever made.
Format: Blu-ray + DVD
Street Date: 05/23/17
Run Time: 100 mins
Number of Discs: 2
List Price: $39.95
• High Definition digital transfer
• High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentations
• Original uncompressed mono audio
• Optional English subtitles
• Beyond the Film: Cops vs Thugs, a new video appreciation by Fukasaku biographer Sadao Yamane
• A new visual essay on cops & criminals in Fukasaku’s works by film scholar Tom Mes
• Theatrical trailer
• Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Ian MacEwan
• FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Patrick Macias
About MVD Entertainment Group
MVD Entertainment Group is a full service music and movie distribution firm, exclusively representing thousands of audio and visual products for DVD, Bluray, CD, vinyl, and digital rights, worldwide. MVD also exclusively distributes a growing line of merchandise including limited edition collectibles, tee shirts, and more.
“Serving Artists and Audiences” is MVD’s purpose statement; it represents a commitment to the interests of the musicians, filmmakers, record labels, producers, managers, and every link in the supply chain. The customers are the Audience, from wholesalers, sub-distributors, major retail chains, online retailers, specialists, and independent mom and pop stores, all the way to the consumer.
MVD Entertainment Group was founded in 1986 by Tom Seaman, an industry veteran with prior experience with The Record Hunter, Sam Goody, CBS Retail, and JEM Distribution. Tom, along with his family Elinor, Eve and Ed, initially focused on music videotapes.
At the turn of the century, with the advent of DVD, MVD built a large catalog of exclusively distributed audiovisual content on DVD’s, with special strength in music concert films, horror movies, documentaries, comedy, cult classics, and much more.