Thursday, 29 June 2017

Doberman Cop (1977)

Hot on the heels of WOLF COP, Arrow Films are bringing us another obscure Japanese crime thriller starring Sonny Chiba. And, just in case you’re wondering (I certainly was), this one doesn’t include any low rent doberman transformation antics.

        Chiba is Joji Kano, a cop from the provinces who’s new to the big city of Tokyo. This being the heyday of US cop shows like  KOJAK (lollipop), COLUMBO (raincoat) and MCLEOD (horse), Kano wears a battered straw hat and carries a baby pig. 

        The burned body of a girl has been discovered. It’s thought she might be from Kano’s home town of Okinawa. Soon he’s on the case, investigating the sleazy nightlife district of the city to the kind of music reminiscent of AIP blaxploitation epics of a few years earlier. 

        DOBERMAN COP is a pretty standard police thriller with 1970s exploitation elements (strip clubs, drug addicted wannabe pop stars, sleazy music impresarios, gang bosses and so on). Fans of director Kinji Fukasaku (THE GREEN SLIME, BATTLE ROYALE) and Chiba will want to see it, and for the casual viewer it offers a fascinating snapshot of typical late 1970s Japanese exploitation fare.

        Extras include a new video appreciation by Sadao Yamane, new interviews with Sonny Chiba and screenwriter Koji Takada, a reversible sleeve and illustrated collector’s booklet with new writing on the film by Patrick Macias. The Chiba interview is Part 2 of an interview that started on the WOLF GUY disc. 

DOBERMAN COP is out on dual format from Arrow Films from Monday 26th June 2017

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