Now, don't hate me: I've always found his stuff a bunch of hit-and-miss.
Again, let me clarify: this isn't to suggest in any way that I don't like his work. But as a discrminating viewer I do find problems with an awful lot of what he produces. Sometimes the stories don't work for me that well. Other times, I struggle with the characters he tries bringing to celluloid life. Rarely have I found what I believe to be the right balance between these elements, and the end result for me is a lot of impressive-looking gibberish that moves at the speed of light. Well done? Of course. Compelling? Meh. Not so much.
Still, there are some early efforts of his that have always drawn my attention when I stumble across them in my reading for SciFiHistory.Net. The best examples are 1983's The Last Battle (which he wrote and directed, and I believe it might be one of his very first films) and 1986's Kamikaze (a SciFi/Comedy that definitely sounds of merit). Though I've kinda/sorta been warned off of The Last Battle, I've opted to keep it on my proverbial Bucket List, meaning I need to come up with the funds to secure myself a watchable copy; and that's not likely going to happen any time soon. But I just received word (via email) this afternoon that Kamikaze is coming to home video this May compliments of the good people at Kino Lorber.
Here's the flick's plot summary as provided by our friends at IMDB.com:
"A crazy old and bored scientist invents a system which allows him to reach through the airwaves and transform live TV cameras into weapons to kill whoever is being filmed."
Presently, all I can say regarding Kamikaze is that I've seen a few snippets of sequences from it online, and it has the potential to be clever. Humor doesn't always translate that well from culture to culture -- especially when the only means to truly 'get the joke' is by reading the sub-titles -- but it's always been the kind of thing that has piqued my curiosity. Who knows? Maybe I can secure a copy in the days ahead, and I'd be thrilled to pen a solid review.
In any event ...
I'm posting the materials below on behalf of the distributor. Interested parties can follow the links to pre-order a copy today ... if you're so inclined.
Prebook Date: 4/11/2023
Street Date: 5/9/2023
Label: KL Studio Classics
BD SRP: $29.95
BD Item #: K26269
BD UPC: 738329262693
Genre: Sci-Fi, Crime, Thriller
Director: Didier Grousset, Luc Besson
Cast: Richard Bohringer, Michel Galabru, Dominique Lavanant, Romane Bohringer, Etienne Chicot, Kim Massee
From co-writer/producer Luc Besson (La Femme Nikita, Léon: The Professional, The Fifth Element) comes the sharp and sumptuous sci-fi/comedy/thriller Kamikaze. Michel Galabru (Subway) is Albert. He’s old, bored, batty and unemployed…but brilliant with computers. Albert embarks on a mission to get rid of the people he hates most—the televised kind—and invents a way to kill TV announcers, on air, from the comfort of his own home. Police are baffled, but Richard Bohringer (The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover) as Inspector Romain Pascot dedicates himself to the chase. Also starring Dominique Lavanant (Roberto Benigni’s The Monster), the cult ’80s classic Kamikaze bursts with slick widescreen visuals by cinematographer Jean-François Robin (L’Amour Braque) and pulsing musical soundscapes by composer Éric Serra (GoldenEye), complementing the explosive satire on couch-potato culture.
NEW Audio Commentary by Film Historian Eddy Von Mueller | Au coeur du cinéma: Interview with Director Didier Grousset (25:37) | Objectif Kamikaze: Documentary (34:04) | Theatrical Trailer | In French with Optional English Subtitles
Kino Lorber website (link)