Yakuza gurentai / Yakuza Hooligans (1966) Sadao Nakajima, Hiroki Matsukata, Shigeru Amachi, Kazuko Inano, Action
A bunch of young angry misfits and hoods who aren’t quite up to joining the yakuza, hatch and execute a variety of petty scams. The youngest, a high school student who has a way with women, is approached by a yakuza and asked to spy for them.
Following the murder of a radio personality in Chicago, all evidence of the crime points to a white supremacist group from Iowa. With the FBI on the case, the department sends inexperienced agent Catherine Weaver (Debra Winger) on an undercover mission to root out the killers. Falling for her guise, local farmer and suspect Gary Simmons (Tom Berenger) fully embraces Weaver into the community. As Weaver spends more time with Simmons, her belief in his guilt diminishes and love takes its place.
Don’t Turn ’em Loose (1936) Benjamin Stoloff, Lewis Stone, James Gleason, Bruce Cabot, Action, Crime, Drama
A conscientious attorney who is a member of the State Parole Board, finds his own son, using an alias, up for parole and makes the decision to cast the approving vote. This turns out to cause many problems for the family while on vacation, and the father has to make another hard decision.
Daisatsujin orochi / The Betrayal (1966) Tokuzô Tanaka, Raizô Ichikawa, Kaoru Yachigusa, Shiho Fujimura, Action, Drama
A naively honorable samurai (played by Raizo) comes to the bitter realization that his devotion to moral samurai principles makes him an oddity among his peers, and a very vulnerable oddity in consequence. He takes the blame for the misdeeds of others, with the understanding that he will be exiled for one year and restored to the clan’s good graces after the political situation dies down. As betrayal begins to heap upon betrayal, he realizes he’ll have to live out his life as a master-less ronin, if not hunted down and killed.
Topaz (1969) Alfred Hitchcock, Frederick Stafford, Dany Robin, John Vernon, Action, Adventure, Thriller
When a Soviet official defects to the United States, he brings with him claims that Russia is using Cuba as a staging ground for nuclear missiles. CIA agent Michael Nordstrom (John Forsythe) enlists the help of French spy André Devereaux (Frédérick Stafford) to find out if the official’s claims are true. Not only do the agents discover that the Soviet’s suspicions are valid, but they also find out that a French spy ring known as “Topaz” is working with the Russians to uncover NATO secrets.
Shin abashiri bangaichi: Arashi yobu shiretoko-misaki / New Prison Walls of Abashiri: Stormy Cape (1971) Ken Takakura, Action
Escape by Night (1937) Hamilton MacFadden, William Hall, Anne Nagel, Dean Jagger, Action, Adventure, Crime, Drama, Romance
In this pastoral drama, a ruthless gang of fugitives, hide from the law on a remote farm. There they find themselves profoundly affected by the old blind man and his loyal dog that lives there. They also gradually begin to respect the honest toil and simple rewards of country life. When the gang leader finally asks them to come out of hiding, the former criminals turn him in.
Kobe Kokusai Gang / International Gangs of Kobe (1975) Noboru Tanaka, Ken Takakura, Bunta Sugawara, Isao Natsuyagi, Action
In International Gangs of Kobe the opposite occurs; it’s Sugawara’s presence that brings out Takakura’s ruthless side. Although the two start off as allied gang members, Kobe proves too small a town for the giants of yakuza cinema. The gang splits into rival factions and Takakura and Sugawara settle their differences with violence. Tons of action and a notable cast make the unexceptional International Gangs of Kobe a load of silly yakuza fun.