The Executioner: By the Neck By David Cairns
Designing for del Toro By Eric Skillman
Criterion offers a killer selection of Japanese yakuza and heist movies from the fifties and sixties on Hulu Plus. And this week’s festival of free films on Hulu, Tokyo Crime Wave, highlights five of them. These are hard-boiled tales of honor and betrayal marked by sharp bursts of violence and wicked black humor: Takashi Nomura’s kinetic hit man saga A Colt Is My Passport; Toshio Masuda’s riveting Rusty Knife, about two former hoodlums forced to testify as witnesses in a murder trial; and two by the inimitable Seijun Suzuki—Take Aim at the Police Van, about a prison guard on the hunt for a killer, and Tokyo Drifter, one of the most popular yakuza films of the era, a bizarre and bloodily beautiful thriller sparkling with bright colors and mod sets. All of those titles are also available in Criterion or Eclipse editions. Plus, this week we’re offering a rare film never released on DVD in the U.S., Jun Fukuda’s jazzy thriller Golden Eyes, about a Tokyo crime syndicate’s gold-smuggling scheme in Beirut. Just to give you an idea of its flamboyance: the film’s alternate title is Booted Babe, Busted Boss. Watch it below, or at Hulu, for free. And be sure to browse through Criterion’s hundreds of other titles on Hulu Plus; just $7.99 a month lets you see them all.