2 December 2012 | MartinHafer
Fair...but rather slow in getting to the point.
Ooops. I rented "Wandering Ginza: She-Cat Gambler" BEFORE I saw the first film in this series, "Wandering Ginza Butterfly"! Somehow I thought I'd already seen the first film but hadn't. So, I cannot compare this second film with the first. And, after I eventually get the first film, I'll try to return to this review to update it.
Now that I've seen 'Wandering Ginza: She-Cat Gambler" I can understand why I thought I'd seen the first film, as the movie is very similar to many Japanese female revenge movies--such as "Lady Snowblood" (which also starred Meiko Kaji). However, I must say that "Lady Snowblood" was much more interesting--mostly because they had a lot more action and the story behind the revenge was more compelling. But here in this movie, the audience must wait a very, very long time for the final big boss battle. Plus, other revenge movies are just more interesting. Now I am NOT saying "Wandering Ginza: She-Cat Gambler" is bad--it's just that there are better examples out there. The film just seemed pretty ordinary. The only unusual aspect of it was Sonny Chiba. While you'd expect to see him use his very considerable martial arts skills, in the end, he uses a gun and a katana (a Japanese long sword)! Again, this isn't bad--just unusual. My advice is that if you love the genre, by all means watch this one. Otherwise, you could do better with this other film or either of the "Kill: Bill" movies.
UPDATE (12/5/12): I saw the first film in the series today and found, surprisingly, that it seemed to have almost nothing to do with its supposed sequel. And, the sequel was actually a bit better, as the first film was quite slow and seemed a bit directionless.