There will be only one survivor. You have to kill your 41 classmates to be that lucky one. There is no other way out but to be in a battle with your friends and companions. There is no option of giving up- kill or die. There is a constant fear lurking over you. You are caught up in an explosive collar that will finish you the moment you try to get rid of it. And there is a time limit- 3 days. You are the winner or you’ll die.
Kitano: So today’s lesson is, you kill each other off till there’s only one left. Nothing’s against the rules.
This classic movie manifests the violence and bloodshed it suggests. In the time roll of 2 hours, one sees the rapid unfolding of the plot and crazy killings by some 15-year old teenagers. Their class is chosen randomly to participate in this game according to the Millenium Education Reform Act. They are brought to a remote island and given a map, food, and various weapon.
There is an initial resistance by these innocuous students but when they saw Kitano, their former teacher hitting them off with unbelievable comfort, the reality struck and it became clear that opting out is not a choice. Indeed they have no choice.
Kyouichi Motobuchi: If I survive, can I go home?
Teacher Kitano: Yes, but only if everyone else is dead.
Some of them succumbed to suicide while others were determined to save themselves and resolved to kill nobody. These students go through the labyrinth of their conscience to sort out their future actions. But some friends are quickly turned into enemies and their violence was devastating. It’s surprising to see these school-uniformed girls ripping and slitting their friends with such ease and conviction.
Despite these struggles and obstacles, some friendships persisted.
Shougo Kawada: Meeting you guys, I finally solved the riddle of Keiko’s smile.
Noriko Nakagawa: What’s the answer?
Shougo Kawada: Her parting words — Thank you — and then…
Shuya: And then?
Noriko Nakagawa: Kawada!
Shougo Kawada: And then — I’m glad I found true friends.
It is interesting to note how Kenji Fukasaku at the ripe age of 70 brilliantly portrayed the youth and the sentiments they experience when dumped into the horrifying situation. Undoubtedly, this movie is considered a masterpiece and an all-time favorite of Quentin Tarantino’s who says,’ If there is any movie that has been made since I’ve been making movies that I wish I had made is Battle Royale’.