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Nicolas Winding Refn’s Yakuza Action Feature ‘The Avenging Silence’ Gets Extensive Synopsis

Written by on January 11, 2017 

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With The Neon Demon now (almost completely) exorcised from Danish auteur Nicolas Winding Refn‘s system, he is already deep into preparing his next project. On the docket for the director is The Avenging Silence, which will apparently sate Refn’s desire to make a “big extravagant action film.” Refn also said over the summer it is loosely inspired by “Dr. No,” Ian Fleming‘s classic Bond novel, as well as William Burrough‘s “Nova Express.” An extended synopsis has now been released for the feature, which hopefully will make its way to screens by 2018.

While he has dipped into action in sections of Drive, Bronson and The Pusher Trilogy, The Avenging Silence sounds like a big step for Refn into pure spy/action genre fare. However, fans of Refn’s stylistic choices should rest assured as he has already stated his protagonist won’t say much. This time, that facet of the protagonist comes with a clever diegetic excuse that seems tailor-made for Refn: damage to the vocal cords. Reading the synopsis, our mind wanders to some Skyfall scenes with its lush Deakins cinematography, and the idea of a full-blown neon spy thriller certain has a nice ring to it.

Check out the synopsis below from the Crouching Tigers Project Lab (via The Playlist).

The spy was one of the leading spies in Europe. An injury inflicted to his vocal cords during a failed mission six years ago left him mute, forcing him to leave his profession. Now, six years later, he is sought out and put on confidential assignment by a former Yakuza, now a retired Japanese businessman in exile in France, to track down and kill the head of the most dangerous Yakuza family in Japan.

Afraid of flying, our spy anonymously boards a cargo ship headed for Tokyo. An onboard explosion sinks the ship and our spy finds himself washed ashore on a life raft in southern Japan. As a mute, our spy must silently journey through Japan seeking 4 clues – symbolizing conquest, war, famine, and death – which will guide him to the unknown location of the Yakuza boss. Meanwhile, the Yakuza boss, known for his 2004 mass slaughter of Yakuza members who had turned against him, is believed to be plotting to reenter the Japanese underworld after living in his own surreptitious world in the mountains, void of all technology. This way of life becomes an obsession for the Yakuza boss. Rumors spread that he had committed suicide years ago but escaped prisoners from his hidden camp told stories of his plan for a comeback. Now rival Yakuza families suspect he is forming a master plan to return, a plan that unburies the most infamous story of Yakuza betrayal.

Our spy finds himself on an existential journey through Japan in search of pieces to the puzzle that will lead him to a confrontation with the ultimate Yakuza boss in a terrifying conclusion.

Additionally, in a final bout of Demon mania, Little White Lies has reported that Refn plans to release an album of songs that inspired his glam-pop-horror-oddity titled “The Wicked Die Young.” Along with songs from Demon‘s composer Cliff Martinez, the LP also includes tracks from Electric YouthSuicideDionne Warwick, and Sparks, among others. See the full tracklist
below.

The Wicked Die Young
the-wicked-die-youngSide A
01. Electric Youth – ‘Good Blood’
02. Lynsey de Paul – ‘Won’t Somebody Dance with Me’
03. Suicide – ‘Cheree (1998 Remastered Version)’
04. 999 – ‘Homicide’
05. Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers – ‘Pirate Love’
06. Dionne Warwick – ‘(Theme From) Valley of the Dolls’
07. Tommy Seebach – ‘Bubble Sex’
08. Amanda Lear – ‘Follow Me’

Side B
01. Giorgio Moroder – ‘Knights in White Satin’
02. Sparks – ‘The No. 1 Song in Heaven’
03. Cliff Martinez – ‘Becoming’
04. Pino Donaggio – ‘Dressed to Kill (Pulsion) (1980): The Shower (Theme from Dressed to Kill)’
05. Claudio Gizzi – ‘End of a Myth’
06. Julian Winding – ‘When You Want to Hurt Someone’

“The Wicked Die Young” LP will be released on April 14. Pre-order here.

Are you interested in Refn entering the spy-action genre? Or should he stick to neon-coated odyssey’s?


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