Kinji Fukasaku may not be an instantly familiar name to most people but I can guarantee that you’ve at least heard of one of his films. Battle Royale, his penultimate film, is one of the most iconic and thrilling cinematic experiences of the 21st century. In an illustrious career, he’s made over sixty films. His crowning achievement was the seminal Battles Without Honour or Humanity. In Cops Vs Thugs, he returns to the world of the Yakuza.

There are two yakuza families in Kurashima City. Detective Kuno (Bunta Sugawara) is best friends with Ohara’s acting boss Hirotani (Hiroki Matsukata). The clan uses this alliance with the police to their advantage. Whilst the Kawade use their political connections to further their interests. When Hirotami uses the police to wrestle a land deal away from his rivals, all hell breaks loose. As violence erupts on the streets an ambitious Lieutenant Kaida (Tatsuo Umemiya) arrives to restore order. Kuno has to choose between friendship and duty.

Cops Vs Thugs is a rip-roaring crime drama which blurs the lines between criminal and. Fukasaku concentrates on the morality behind Kuno’s decisions, comparing and contrasting them with the actions of his criminal counterpart Hirotani. There are no heroes here, just different shades of the same hue. As the plots thicken, political and police corruption only serve to fan the flames. Cops Vs Thugs is an explosive crime drama where lines are drawn in the sand and allegiances are sorely tested.

Special Edition Contents:

• High Definition digital transfer
• High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentations
• Original uncompressed mono audio
• Optional English subtitles
Beyond the Film: Cops vs Thugs, a new video appreciation by Fukasaku biographer Sadao Yamane
• A new visual essay on cops & criminals in Fukasaku’s works by film scholar Tom Mes
• Theatrical trailer

Cops Vs Thugs is released on dual format by Arrow Video on Monday 22 May.