Ubisoft Presents Fantasia 2008

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Be a Man! Samurai School

(Sakigake!! Otokojuku)

North american Premiere

Hosted by Director/Actor Tak Sakaguchi

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Director: Tak Sakaguchi
Screenplay: Tak Sakaguchi, from Akira Miyashita
Cast: Tak Sakaguchi, Shoei, Shin’taro Yamada, Hiroyuki Onoue, Taketarino Yamaguchi
Producers: Keiko Kusakabe
Distributor: Media Blasters

Part of...

From Manga to Film   

From Manga to Film


The only true path to respect for a man is to sign up with a samurai school—but hold on! Slobs and slackers are advised to steer clear. This kind of training demands courage, stamina and perseverance! You think you got what it takes? Well, get ready for routine humiliation at the hands of older students. Get ready for training with weapons that involves getting them smack in your face. Get ready to blindly obey the orders of your instructors. Troublemakers will be dealt with accordingly. This isn’t a damn tea party! You still interested?

An adaptation of a resoundingly popular Japanese manga, BE A MAN! SAMURAI SCHOOL follows the gut-bustingly funny trials and travails of timid Hidemaro. To honour his family, the poor pipsqueak must study the martial arts at Otoko-juku, a school with a fearsome rep. Surrounded by bigger, stronger, more dedicated students, Hidemaro is soon uncertain whether he’s got the right stuff to be a samurai. He can hardly hold his own next to his stunningly strong fellow students, like Momo (Tak Sakaguchi), a mysterious fighter who seems superhumanly powerful. Hidemaro’s charm and mischief, however, at least allow him to bond with a number of his classmates. He’ll need all the friends he can get when the students of Otoko-juku see the gauntlet thrown down by mighty adversaries, whose insurmountable challenge may well lead to their beloved school being shut down!

Tak Sakaguchi conquered Montreal crowds with his lead performance in the cult classic VERSUS, and he followed that with turns in such Fantasia fare as AZUMI, BATTLEFIELD BASEBALL and DEATH TRANCE. With BE A MAN!, the Japanese fight-flick superstar makes his directorial debut, a wild and woolly comedy in which logic and realism are noticeable in their absence. Parodying grand and deathly serious martial arts epics such as those of Zhang Yimou, Sakaguchi nonetheless remains faithful to the core of his craft with his intense and meticulously choreographed combat sequences. BE A MAN! SAMURAI SCHOOL offers a new facet of the exciting and memorable career of this exceptional talent in Asian genre cinema!

—Simon Laperričre (translated by Rupert Bottenberg)