Tag: japan

Fantasia 2024 Review: TATSUMI, A Gritty Yakuza Street Drama With A Broken Heart

I am happy that these kinds of gritty, but emotionally tragic crime films are still being made. Hiroshi Shôji’s Tatsumi is one of those skuzzy neighborhood dramas, the kind soaked in poverty, spit, blood, and tears. Where the crime feels...

Friday One Sheet: TATSUMI

I remain ever a fan of taking a compelling still frame form the film itself, and composing it into key art. Below is the poster for Yakuza drama, Tatsumi, in which leads Yûya Endô and Kokoro Morita offer each other...

Friday One Sheet: GODZILLA MINUS ONE (Minus Color)

Somehow in this column, I never managed to get to any of the lovely key art designs Godzilla Minus One. Let us fix that, shall we? The Japanese soft reboot cum retro prequel to the 1954 original Kaiju classic has been...

THE BOY AND THE HERON Review: Culmination of a Life's Work

Hayao Miyazaki's new film.

Toronto 2023 Review: THE BOY AND THE HERON, Sumptuous Miyazaki-San, Studio Ghibli Career Retrospective

From the opening air raid sirens and fiery infernos of World War II Tokyo bombings to the bucolic countryside house and its magical surroundings, Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli has come full circle in its 40 year history animated mastery....

Call Me Maybe: Hideo Nakata's RINGU Turns 25

A curse that infects people like a virus; a ghostly girl apparition with long hair — we owe these iconic J-horror images, and many other elements that are now the scary starter kit, to the creators of Ring (orig. Ringu).  This year...

Cannes 2023 Review: KUBI, Masterclass in Absurdist History

Takeshi Kitano's new film.

Cannes 2023 Review: PERFECT DAYS, Magic Moments

Wim Wenders' new film.

DROPS OF GOD Review: Like Fine Wine, Gets Better As It Goes

Fleur Geffrier and Yamashita Tomohisa star in the swirling dramatic series, created by Quoc Dang Tran, now streaming on Apple TV+.

Cannes 2023 Review: MONSTER, Complex Chronology, Brave Message

Kore-eda Hirokazu directed a impactful drama with genre trappings.

DIM SUM: A LITTLE BIT OF HEART, Kurosawa's 4K DREAMS: Criterion in August 2023

Let's start with a little dim sum before night falls and dreams begin. In August 2023, The Criterion Collection will release Wayne Wang's Dim Sum: A Little Bit of Heart on Blu-ray and Akira Kurosawa's Dreams in 4K, which makes...

BRANDED TO KILL 4K Review: Exciting and Funny

Suzuki Seijun's 1967 masterpiece, starring Shishido Joe, got him fired from Nikkatsu. Now available from The Criterion Collection.

SUZUME Review: A Door, A Talking Cat, A Running Chair, and You

Directed by Makoto Shinkai, the animated adventure from Japan follows a young girl on a quest to save the world.

Berlinale 2023 Review: #MANHOLE, From Claustrophobic Horror to Social Satire

Nakajima Yuto stars in director Kazuyoshi Kumakiri's genre-bending psychological thriller.

Sundance 2023 Review: AUM: THE CULT AT THE END OF THE WORLD Offers Anatomy of Terror

Chiaki Yanagimoto and Ben Braun's documentary goes behind the scenes of the 1995 Sarin gas attack in a Tokyo subway.

Review: SHIN ULTRAMAN, Bouncy Good Fun

Director Higuchi Shinji says: Silver giants are go!

Review: CURE, Hypnotically Haunting

Masterfully directed by Kurosawa Kiyoshi, the intense murder mystery stars Yakusho Kôji and Hagiwara Masato, now on Blu-ray from The Criterion Collection.

Review: GOODBYE, DON GLEES!, Farewell to Summer. Farewell to Youth.

Directed by Atsuko Ishizuka, the coming of age story is captured in beautiful animation and heartfelt emotions.

Now Playing in Japan: RAGEAHOLIC, Addicted to Anger

And you thought *you* had anger issues. Opening today in Japan, Rageaholic "follows Yakuza-busting police officer Fukama (Yohta Kawase)," according to the official synopsis. "After allowing his overly-violent nature to get the better of him, [he] botches an arrest and...

Review: BABY ASSASSINS, Criminals Like Us

Akari Takaishi and Saori Izawa star in writer/director Hugo Sakamoto's delightful criminal character story. With a lot of blood and bullets.