Tokyo Tribe

Tokyo Tribe ★★★½

Garish, annoying, and nuts... perversely fascinating. Earlier Sono (ca. Suicide Club) displayed a puritanical distaste for the inauthenticity of J-pop cultural expression that drove a lot of his satirical content. Twenty years later, either his satire has gotten so deadpan that his pisstakes are identical to "the real thing" or he's flip-flopped and embraced that inauthenticity as just another tool he can use to create his craziness with. This one is 100% fake-Japanese-hiphop, and even 70-80% of the patented Sono Neon Chaos Hellscape is created on a soundstage, using a relatively small number of design elements. (The sound design is much richer and more detailed this time than the art direction...) The octopus of global capital = the workings of crime gangs, like so many Asian movies postulate, and #IfTheKidsAreUnited is the force that mobilizes to push back against the economic fascists -- but in the end, all the rivalries and competitive beefs between the gangs embroiled in conflict are revealed to be the most literal kind of dick-wagging exercise, steroid-encrusted sadboys fighting to prove whose is biggest.

MVP: the actor whose character plays out as "Dennis Hopper in the role of a malfunctioning Elvis robot."

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