A lightning-paced 60’s crime film from Japan’s Nikkatsu Studios, Three Seconds to Explosion packs enough subterfuge and action into its 84 volatile minutes to fill out a dozen pictures made anywhere else.
“I like shady dealings,” purrs undercover superspy Yabuki (Akira Kobayashi – The Yakuza Papers) en route to infiltrating a sadistic, trigger-happy gang of international jewel thieves. Gone renegade from the shadowy espionage bureau that honed his killer instincts to a razor’s edge, the implacable Yabuki teams up with fellow mercenary crime fighter Yamawaki (Hideki Takahashi – Fighting Elegy). Together, they follow a trail of stolen gems leading from the final days of WWII to a contemporary conspiracy that reaches into the highest corridors of corporate power and nefarious international villainy.
A widescreen whirlwind of sharkskin thread, revenge-crazed assassins, ticking time bombs, deadly booby traps, and triple-crossing lingerie-clad femme fatales, Three Seconds to Explosion connects Nikkatsu’s “mood action” yakuza gangster films of the 50’s and 60’s to the studio’s subsequent kinky 70’s “pink films,” and is a primer in the tough, super-cool world of “no borders” exploitation cinema Nikkatsu style.
1967 Japan 84 min. Color In Japanese with optional English subtitles
Letterboxed (2.35:1) Enhanced for 16x9 TVs
a NIKKATSU production a film by MOTOMU IDA 3 SECONDS BEFORE EXPLOSION
AKIRA KOBAYASHI RYOJI HAYAMA KAZUO KITAMURA KATSUE TAKAISHI HIROSHI NAWA and ASAO UCHIDA
Cinematography by IZUMI HAGIWARA lighting by SABURO MITSUO art direction by KAZUO YAGYU edited by OSAMU INOUE
Music by SEITARO OMORI songs by KATSUE TAKAISHI, SHIRO HIDE screenplay by SHUICHI NAGAHARA based on a novel by HARUHIKO OYABU directed by MOTOMU IDA
© 1967 Nikkatsu Corporation