With the imminent release of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, I think this is a good time for me to go back to watch Battle Royale (2000), since they share the same element of having teenagers killing each other.

In Battle Royale (2000), an adaptation of a Japanese novel, it is explained that huge unemployment and angry youths, who boycotted school, caused the government to create the BR Act.  Under this act a class of students will be forced to kill each other in an isolated island, with only one final survivor.  After doing some google searches I still cannot understand why and how this act can help the economy and deal with the violent youths.  Anyway, if we accept this premise, this slasher movie is exceptionally well done.  Everyone is given a different kind of tool – a weapon, GPS map device, binocular, or something that is mostly useless.  Everyone dies in a different manner.  We see love, betrayal, moral conflicts and remorse, etc.  Very few slasher movies can achieve this level of variety.  Note: The Special Edition Director’s Cut adds more background for some characters.

Sometimes movie sequels are bad because they simply repeat the things done in a prior movie without adding anything interesting.  However, Battle Royale II: Requiem (2003) managed to be really bad by not repeating all the good things from the original movie.  This sequel tells the story of a survivor from the first movie leading a group of people to oppose the BR Act and the government.  So the government creates BR Act II that sends a class of students to kill him.  This becomes a very substandard generic war movie.  Worst of all, the ending is nonsense.

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