THE YAKUZA, 1975, Warner Bros., 112 min. Sydney Pollack directs this potent, poignant thriller that blends American neo-noir and the then-peaking Japanese yakuza film genre. Robert Mitchum is a world-weary private eye who joins up with a taciturn kendo instructor (yakuza movie icon Ken Takakura), who has a wartime obligation to Mitchum. Likewise, Mitchum owes past wartime comrade, Tanner (Brian Keith) a favor as well, and it’s a humdinger: rescue Tanner’s kidnapped daughter in Japan. A labyrinthine plot is set in motion and soon Mitchum and Takakura become embroiled in a horrifying series of double-crosses and mixed signals that result in a trail of bloody retribution. Adapting the story by Leonard Schrader, Paul Schrader and Robert Towne wrote the moody screenplay. Co-starring Richard Jordan.