Black Belt (film)

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Black Belt
Directed by Shunichi Nagasaki[1]
Written by George Iida
Music by Naoki Sato
Distributed by Toei Company
Country Japan
Language Japanese

Black Belt (2007), known as Kuro-obi (黒帯) in Japan, is a Japanese film directed by Shunichi Nagasaki. It focuses mainly on the martial art of Karate. It is notable for excluding the usual exaggerations of the genre. The lead roles were played by karate experts, and no special effects were used.


The events take place in 1932 in Japanese-occupied Manchuria, in which the corrupt leaders of the Japanese army are trying to take over all the Karate dojos /training halls for their own benefit. The master Eiken Shibahara (Yosuke Natsuki), from one of these dojo located on the southernmost Japanese island of Kyushu, dies before passing on the Kuroobi/ black belt to his successor. Three of his pupils: Taikan (Tatsuya Naka 7th Dan JKA Shotokan karate), Giryu (Akihito Yagi 7th Dan Meibukan Gōjū-ryū Karate) and Choei (Yuji Suzuki, 1st Dan Kyokushin karate), have the task of deciding amongst themselves who deserves it most.

After they bury their master, they are forced to leave the dojo and join the Japanese army. At this point, their journeys lead them on different paths both in life and in the understanding of their master's teachings of martial arts. They are reunited in the end, to battle together against corruption and uphold tradition.


DVD releases[edit]

Tokyo Shock (America)

Madman Entertainment (Australia)

  • Aspect ratio: Widescreen (1:78:1) anamorphic
  • Sound: Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1), Japanese (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Supplements: Making of Black Belt; theatrical trailer; TV spot; trailers for Kaidan, Death Trance, A Tattooed Life, Sonny Chiba Boxset Volume 1
  • Region 4, PAL


External links[edit]