Battle Royale
Battle Royale (2000)

A long-unavailable underground hit that anticipated The Hunger Games novels by eight years, veteran director Fukasaku's epically violent, still-controversial and deeply influential genre masterpiece takes place in a dystopian alternate… More

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Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: January 1, 2000
DVD Release Date: March 20, 2012
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Critic Score: 86% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Battle Royale is a controversial and violent parable of adolescence, heightening teenage melodrama with life-or-death stakes.

Sara Stewart
New York Post

Stylistically it's a beauty, with khaki-uniformed waifs fighting for their lives to a crashing classical score.

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Eric Hynes
Village Voice

It may suit a certain worldview, but Battle Royale's cynicism is still a form fantasy-a balm as well as a bomb.

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Sean Axmaker

This savage social satire revels in the brutality and gore and plays it for dark comedy and gallows humor, a teen melodrama gone feral as cliques fall apart under fire and young love is literally under the gun.

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A.O. Scott
New York Times

Awful deaths (and hysterical reactions to them) punctuate declarations of love and friendship, revelations of treachery and heavily armed expressions of angst.

Maggie Lee
Hollywood Reporter

3D conversion of a classic teen massacre thriller raises the gore level.

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Maitland McDonagh
Film Journal International

Before The Hunger Games there was Battle Royale. The bloody spectacle of Japanese schoolchildren being forced into a sadistic game of "last man standing" packs an emotional wallop.

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Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out

Forgive the film its small flaws of histrionic performances and cheap execution for the giddy rush of its banal, Verhoevenesque atmosphere...

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Robert Koehler

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.

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Rob Vaux

A gloriously entertaining ride, provided you have a taste for dark material and don't mind the occasional poke in the ribs.

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More reviews for Battle Royale

Flixster Audience Score: 89% Flixster User Reviews
Nicki Marie
Way better than The Hunger Games.
Chris Weber
I've finally gotten around to seeing this, and yeah, it's quite a film. First off: the elephant in the room. The Hunger Games isn't a complete… More
<B>Battle Royale</b> has impressed many and is loved by a lot. I must have missed something. I liked the concept of the film and enjoyed some it.… More
Alex roy
A taut, gripping and dramatic action thriller that puts students to fight each other to the death till one winner .is left standing. Sound familiar? The Hunger… More
Kase Vollebregt
'Battle Royale' is clearly a huge underground hit for many good reasons, even if the acting is a little poor from the young students. Kitano gives a… More
Randy Tippy
Adolescent sentiments mired in graphic violence. Not for the young or the squeamish.