Saturday, August 21, 2021

Fantasia 2021 – Kakegurui 2: Ultimate Russian Roulette (2021)

Movie Name/Year: Fantasia 2021 – Kakegurui 2: Ultimate Russian Roulette (2021)
Genre: Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Length: 119 minutes
Rating: Unrated
Language: Japanese
Director: Tsutomu Hanabusa
Actors: Minami Hamabe, Mahiro Takasugi, Ryusei Fujii
Blurb from IMDb: A school appears peaceful from a distance, but a fierce gambling battle takes place once again. Yumeko Jabami is involved in the battle.

Selina’s Point of View:
Once I saw the first Kakegurui (2019) I had to jump right into the sequel. Since both were available in the Fantasia Film Festival, I wasted no time.
It was even better than the first one.
I have to note there’s a drastic tone change between the first and second films. Although Kakegurui 2: Ultimate Russian Roulette does keep some of that over-the-top humor that anime brings to the table, it went much darker than the first. No time was wasted in letting us know that, either.
We get a quick idea of how the events of Kakegurui have affected the setting, and then we’re thrown into an insane plot that never slows down.

I’ll admit, the new antagonist didn’t give off a good first impression. I thought he was a little goofy. After a few scenes with him, however, all his idiosyncrasies started to make sense and he went from goofy to disturbing. Gone was the high school-level bickering of the president and the rising threat to her dominance. In its place we got a mad man capable of anything and complete chaos.
I found myself holding my breath at times. It wasn’t as unpredictable as the first, but it definitely kept me on my toes.
I only have one complaint. It’s not enough to sully my love for the movie, but it’s a consideration. There was a musical scene that just felt completely out of place. It’s the only musical piece in either film and was unnecessary. It pulled me out of the story for a minute. That part would have been better if it didn’t leap frog into an unconnected genre.
I had high hopes for Kakegurui 2: Ultimate Russian Roulette, and it blew past every one of them. It is an absolute must-see.

Trust the Dice: Selina’s Rating – 5/5
Trust-the-Dice’s Parental Advisory Rating: R
Movie Trailer: 

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