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Nikkatsu Noir: Seijun Suzuki’s Take Aim At The Police Van

Seijun Suzuki started as a contract director for Nikkatsu in 1956. By the time 1960 rolled around, which was the year Take Aim at the Police Van was released, Suzuki had over a dozen films to his credit. Suzuki’s entry in the Eclipse’s Nikkatsu Noir box set is ultimately a minor work in his overall canon, but it is nonetheless a solid film.

In Take Aim at the Police Van, a police van (really?) transporting prisoners is attacked early in the first act. Both prisoners and guards die as a result, and a prison officer named Daijiro Tamon (Michitaro Mizushima) takes the heat for letting the incident occur. His punishment is a six month suspension, which he simply writes off as an extended vacation. Tamon is bothered by things he noticed at the time of the incident, including a name scrawled in a dirty bus window by a prisoner named

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