The Vintagent Classics: The films that inspired us. 


Run Time: 2:05:00
Producer: Paramount Pictures
Director: Ridley Scott
Writer: Craig Bolotin, Warren Lewis
Key Cast: Michael Douglas, Andy Garcia, Ken Takakura


Bōsōzoku arrives in Hollywood! “Just a few years after releasing his own cyberpunk masterpiece via Blade Runner (1982), Ridley Scott delivered Black Rain (1989), a macho and somewhat racist blockbuster starring Michael Douglas as a bike fanatic detective who journeys to Japan after becoming embroiled in a yakuza conspiracy in New York. 

The film opens with Douglas’ character engaging in a testosterone-fuelled drag race beneath the Brooklyn Bridge, but it’s Japan’s biker gangs who make heads roll later on. They’re a recurring source of intimidation in violence on behalf of their yakuza buddies in Osaka, showing up wearing bandanas and bearing flags down neon-soaked back streets, embodying what had clearly now become stereotype.” – Another Magazine


Black Rain is a neo-noir action thriller directed by Ridley Scott and starring Michael Douglas, Andy García, Ken Takakura, Kate Capshaw, Yūsaku Matsuda and Tomisaburo Wakayama. The film focuses on two NYPD detectives who arrest a member of the Yakuza and must escort him back to Japan. Once there, he escapes, and the two officers find themselves dragged deeper and deeper into the Japanese underworld.

The film was released by Paramount Pictures on September 22, 1989. It received much publicity beforehand as it was Douglas’s first film since his Oscar winning role in Wall Street- a span of nearly two years. Upon release, it received generally mixed to positive reviews from critics, which praised the performances, action sequences, Hans Zimmer’s musical score, direction and editing but criticized the screenwriting, clichéd story and lack of character development.

In the years since, the film has become a cult film and has been widely praised. It was also a huge box office hit, grossing over $134 million worldwide in front of a production budget of $30 million, and was nominated for Best Sound and Best Sound Editing at the 62nd Academy Awards.

Black Rain was the final film role for actor Yūsaku Matsuda. Matsuda knew he had bladder cancer and that his condition would be aggravated by acting in the movie. He elected to do so anyway, unbeknownst to director Sir Ridley Scott, reportedly saying, “This way, I will live forever.” On November 6, 1989, less than seven weeks after the film’s American premiere, Matsudo died of his bladder cancer at the age of 40. The film is dedicated to his memory.


An American Cop in Japan. Their country. Their laws. Their game. His rules.

Two New York cops get involved in a gang war between members of the Yakuza, the Japanese Mafia. They arrest one of their killers and are ordered to escort him back to Japan. In Japan, however, he manages to escape. As they try to track him down, they get deeper and deeper into the Japanese Mafia scene and they have to learn that they can only win by playing the game the Japanese way.


Watch the FULL FILM on Youtube



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