The kids of Third Year Class-B Shiroiwa Junior High School are back, in a 4K restoration of the classic cult shocker adapted from the controversial novel by Koushun Takami.
Presenting an alternate dystopian vision of turn-of-the-millennium Japan, Battle Royale follows the 42 junior high school students selected to take part in the government’s annual Battle Royale programme, established as an extreme method of addressing concerns about juvenile delinquency. Dispatched to a remote island, they are each given individual weapons (ranging from Uzis and machetes to pan lids and binoculars), food and water, and the order to go out and kill each other. Every player is fitted with an explosive collar around their neck, imposing a strict three-day time limit on the deadly games in which there can only be one survivor. Overseeing the carnage is ‘Beat’ Takeshi Kitano (Sonatine, Hana-bi, Zatoichi) as the teacher pushed to the edge by his unruly charges.
Playing like a turbo-charged hybrid of Lord of the Flies and The Most Dangerous Game, the final completed work by veteran yakuza-film director Kinji Fukasaku (Battles without Honor and Humanity, Graveyard of Honor) helped launch a new wave of appreciation for Asian cinema in the 21st century.
Arrow Video will be releasing BATTLE ROYALE on UHD Special Edition Blu-Ray on 22nd November 2021.
4K ULTRA-HD SPECIAL EDITION CONTENTS
• 4K restoration of the Original Theatrical Version and Special Edition Director’s Cut of Battle Royale from the original camera negative by Arrow Films, approved by Kenta Fukasaku
• 4K (2160p) UHD Blu-ray presentation of both versions in Dolby Vision (HDR10 compatible)
• Original 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio and 2.0 stereo audio on both cuts
• Optional English subtitles on both cuts
• Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring essays by Matt Alt and Anne Billson
DISC ONE – BATTLE ROYALE: ORIGINAL THEATRICAL VERSION
• Audio commentary by critics Tom Mes and Jasper Sharp
• Coming of Age: Battle Royale at 20, a 42-minute documentary about the legacy of Battle Royale
• Bloody Education: Kenta Fukasaku on Battle Royale, an interview with the film’s producer and screenwriter
• The Making of Battle Royale: The Experience of 42 High School Students, documentary featuring footage from the shooting of the film and cast and crew discussions
• The Slaughter of 42 High School Students, a look behind the scenes of the shoot
• Behind the scenes footage with comments from the cast and crew
• Filming on Set, a look at the shooting of key scenes from the film
• Conducting Battle Royale with the Warsaw National Philharmonic, archive footage of Masamichi Amano conducting the soundtrack rehearsal
DISC TWO – BATTLE ROYALE: SPECIAL EDITION DIRECTOR’S CUT
• Shooting the Special Edition, on-location featurette with footage of the cast and crew reuniting for the shoot of the Special Edition
• Royale Rehearsals, featurette on Kinji Fukasaku directing the film’s young cast
• Masamichi Amano Conducts Battle Royale, archive featurette
• Takeshi Kitano Interview, filmed on location with the Japanese star
• The Correct Way to Fight in Battle Royale, instructional video explaining the rules of the game
• The Correct Way to Make ‘Battle Royale’: Birthday Version, a new version of the original instructional video made to celebrate Kinji Fukasaku’s birthday
• Premiere Press Conference, preceding the film’s first public screening
• Tokyo International Film Festival Presentation, With footage from the gala screening at the Tokyo International Film Festival
• Opening Day at the Marunouchi Toei Movie Theatre, archive footage of the Japanese opening
• Special Effects Comparison showing how the film’s violent killings were created
• Original Trailers and TV spots
• Kinji Fukasaku trailer reel, a collection of original trailers for Fukasaku’s classic yakuza films from the 70s
• Image gallery