E-Mail This Story

Vengeance is Mine, Thu November 15
2007, 7:00 only

Bristles with energy – new 35mm print!

Enter the info below and we'll send the story to your friend.

Vengeance is Mine shows at IFS on Thu November 15, 2007, 7:00 only

Vengeance is Mine
Bristles with energy – new 35mm print!
Thu November 15
2007, 7:00 only

Arguably one of the most influential Japanese films of the 1970s, Shohei Imamura's Vengeance Is Mine is a cold, cynical and at times rather disturbing look at a psychotic criminal's downward spiral.

The story follows a man named Iwao Enokizu (Ken Ogata). Through a series of flashbacks we learn how his relationship with his father, Shizou (Mitsuko Baisho), soured and subsequently how that affected him in his younger days. At the end of the Second World War he steals a Jeep from some American G.I.'s, and when he's captured he winds up in jail. When he's let out, he has to deal with his wife, and when Iwao kills two men that he works with, it all starts to go downhill fast. Iwao hides, and he continues to kill and to steal, and all the while the authorities close in on him.

Shohei Imamura directs the film in a sort of loose documentary style and it's not a stretch to see how this film could have influenced more modern, avant-garde fare such as Henry: Portrait Of A Serial Killer or Man Bites Dog. By placing a madman as the central character of the story and focusing on his actions rather than those of the police out to apprehend him, we are almost forced to root for the bad guy here. Obviously Iwao is a despicable man, a worthless human being who takes advantage of everyone around him, but the film makes us care for him in a twisted sort of way. Sure, he's a bastard, but he's slick and clever and even rather charming when it suits his interests and because of this we can see how his victims are pulled in and as such, he's even all the more frightening. The film uses frantic camera work to capture some of the more intense scenes.

Not for the faint of heart, the film is exceptionally dark (though not without humor) and some of the scenes of sexual violence could still be considered quite strong, although the movie is so well made that it doesn't feel exploitative or unnecessary. Even if we don't know why he does what he does, he's still a darkly fascinating character who proves that, like it or not, actions still speak louder than words. (I. Jane, DVDtalk)

To see a trailer and read a review, visit


10 films for $60 with punch card
$9 general admission. $7 w/UCB student ID, $7 for senior citizens
$1 discount to anyone with a bike helmet
Free on your birthday! CU Cinema Studies students get in free.


Pay lot 360 (now only $1/hour!), across from the buffalo statue and next to the Duane Physics tower, is closest to Muenzinger. Free parking can be found after 5pm at the meters along Colorado Ave east of Folsom stadium and along University Ave west of Macky.


Park elsewhere and catch the HOP to campus

International Film Series

(Originally called The University Film Commission)
Established 1941 by James Sandoe.

First Person Cinema

(Originally called The Experimental Cinema Group)
Established 1955 by Carla Selby, Gladney Oakley, Bruce Conner and Stan Brakhage.

C.U. Film Program

(AKA The Rocky Mountain Film Center)
First offered degrees in filmmaking and critical studies in 1989 under the guidance of Virgil Grillo.

Celebrating Stan

Created by Suranjan Ganguly in 2003.

C.U. Department of Cinema Studies & Moving Image Arts

Established 2017 by Chair Ernesto Acevedo-Muñoz.

Thank you, sponsors!
Boulder International Film Festival
Department of Cinema Studies & Moving Image Arts

Looking for a gift for a friend?
Buy a Frequent Patron Punch Card for $60 at any IFS show. With the punch card you can see ten films (a value of $90).

Cox & Kjølseth
: Filmmaker Alex Cox & Pablo Kjølseth discuss film topics from their own unique perspectives.

: Pablo and Ana share Zoom-based briefs on what's currently playing at IFS

Search IFS schedules

Index of visiting artists

Tue Dec 5, 2023

Rare Exports

At Muenzinger Auditorium

Thu Dec 7, 2023

Princess Mononoke

At Muenzinger Auditorium

more on 35mm...