Tag: japanesecinema

Interview: Miike Takashi on FIRST LOVE, Yakuza Subtypes, and the Joy of Not Evolving

After over 100 projects over 30 years, Miike Takashi has more than earned his status as one of the world’s most celebrated and fascinating directors.  Unrestrained by style, or genre, or the limits of “good taste,” Miike has fearlessly made...

Japan Cuts 2019 Interview: BLUE HOUR's Shim Eun-kyung on Crossing Into Japanese Cinema

Debuting at age nine, Shim Eun-kyung went on to become one of South Korea’s most bankable actresses, starring in hit television dramas, and box office blockbusters like Sunny and Miss Granny.  Moved by her love of Japanese cinema, Shim immigrated...

Japan Cuts 2019 Interview: Director Toyoda Toshiaki Talks Quiet Rebellion in THE MIRACLE OF CRYBABY SHOTTAN

The films of Toyoda Toshiaki are known for their brash and exciting style, laced with acid takes on society.  Returning to the big screen after four years with The Miracle of Crybaby Shottan, director Toyoda shows his quieter, more contemplative...

Japan Cuts 2019 Interview: Director Tezka Macoto on Rediscovering THE LEGEND OF THE STARDUST BROTHERS

In 1985, director Tezka Macoto released a singular send-up of the Japanese entertainment industry.  The Legend of the Stardust Brothers was a moussed and glittering New Wave-tastic mélange of mediums; from music, to fashion, to animation -- with zombies!  So...

Japan Cuts 2019 Interview: Cut Above Winner Tsukamoto Shinya Talks KILLING and TETSUO: THE IRON MAN

From his beginnings as a 14-year-old with a Super 8 camera, to his latest film, KILLING; a twist on the classic samurai movie, Tsukamoto Shinya has always blazed his own cinematic path.     Receiving Japan Cuts 2019 Cut Above award...

Japan Cuts 2019 Interview: HIS LOST NAME Director Hirose Nanako Uncovers Dark Truths

His Lost Name is the story of a young man whose mysterious presence in a small town engenders willing deceptions, and reveals uncomfortable truths.  At Japan Cuts 2019, director Hirose Nanako spoke exclusively with LMD about creating her first feature...

Japan Cuts 2019 Interview: DEMOLITION GIRL Director Matsugami Genta, Star Kitai Aya Talk Teenage Crushing

Demolition Girl places a coming-of-age story against the backdrop of the sketchy world of fetish videos.  At Japan Cuts 2019, LMD had an exclusive chat with director Matsugami Genta and actress Kitai Aya, who has a standout performance as the...

New York Asian 2019 Interview: 5 MILLION DOLLAR LIFE Director Moon Sung-ho and Producer Endo Hiroshi on What a Life is Worth

In his feature debut, director Moon Sung-ho ponders the value of a human life. 5 Million Dollar Life is a unique road trip / coming-of-age story of one Japanese teenager’s bumpy journey toward self-discovery.     At the New York Asian...

Japan Cuts 2018 Interview: BLEACH Director Sato Shinsuke on Shinigami, Samurai, and Special Effects

In the crowded world of movie adaptations of Japanese manga, Director Sato Shinsuke has carved a high place for himself, helming critically-lauded live-action versions of Gantz, I Am A Hero, 2016’s Death Note, and Inuyashiki.  Sato-san set himself quite a...

Japan Cuts Interview: Cut Above Award Winner Kirin Kiki on Living Life and Art on Her Own Terms

In a career that spans over half a century, Kirin Kiki is the epitome of the late-blooming rose.  From wild, comedic parts early in her career, to the wry, scene-stealing elder roles that won her awards later in life, Kirin-san...

Japan Cuts 2018 Interview: HANAGATAMI Star Kubozuka Shunsuke on a Story of Youth During Wartime

Hanagatami, the latest work from director Obayashi Nobuhiko, is a fever dream of youth during wartime.  Solidly surreal and sweating with sexual tension, the auteur cast his story of teenagers with actors in their twenties, thirties and forties.     At...

Japan Cuts 2018 Interview: KUSHINA Director Hayami Moët, Star Hirota Tomona and DP Muramatsu Ryo Create a Secret World of Women

An invasion of a secret world of women sets the stage for high tension in Director Hayami Moët’s Kushina, what you will be.  At Japan Cuts, director Hayami, star Hirota Tomona, and cinematographer Ryo Muramatsu spoke with LMD about the...

Japan Cuts 2018 Interview: THICKER THAN WATER Director Yoshida Keisuke Talks Sibling Rivalry

In director Yoshida Keisuke’s Thicker Than Water, sibling rivalry lasts far beyond the playground.  At Japan Cuts, director Yoshida spoke with LMD about family ties, jealousy, and sadistically teasing the audience.   The Lady Miz Diva:  As with most of...

Japan Cuts 2018 Interview: Actor/Filmmaker Saitoh Takumi on Life on Both Sides of the Camera With BLANK 13 and RAMEN SHOP

Beginning his career as a model at age 15, Saitoh Takumi has made his mark as an actor, singer, photographer, radio host, and blog writer.    Because he wasn’t busy enough, Saitoh graced the Japan Cuts film festival with a...

Japan Cuts 2018 Interview: DREAM OF ILLUMINATION Director Sawada Thunder, Star Takagawa Yuya, Producer Kitaki Kazuyuki on a Changing Japan

Atmospheric and haunting, director Sawada Thunder’s Dream of Illumination, tells a story of a Japan that is changing, whether it wants to, or not.  At Japan Cuts, Director Sawada, star Takagawa Yuya, and Producer Kitaki Kazuyuki, spoke to me about...

New York Asian 2018 Interview: SEKIGAHARA Director Harada Masato on Filming History Through a Modern Eye

For someone whose filmmaking career began in the 1970s, including such amazing fare as Kamikaze Taxi, Bounce KO Gals, Kakekomi, and The Emperor in August, director Harada Masato is showing no signs of slowing down.    At the New York...

New York Asian 2018 Interview: Breaking Taboos with DYNAMITE GRAFFITI's Director Tominaga Masanori and Star Emoto Tasuku

The New York Asian film Festival 2018 is underway, and its opening salvo is a dive into the porn mag industry of the 1970s and 80s.  Director Tominaga Masanori and actor Emoto Tasuku spoke with LMD about DYNAMITE GRAFFITI, chronicling...

Interview: The Legendary Nakadai Tatsuya on Counterculture Cinema and Japan's Current Nationalism

At 83 years young, Nakadai Tatsuya is one of the lions of the Golden Age of Japanese cinema, still at the top of the bill after over 160 films.  Selling out his recent appearance at New York’s Japan Society, the...

MISS HOKUSAI: New Trailer for US Release of Production I.G.'s Latest

Set in 19th century Edo, Japan. Miss Hokusai blends the magical realism sensibility of Studio Ghibli with Ozu Yasujirô-like framing. Famed artist Tetsuzo, a.k.a. Hokusai Katsushika, and his grown daughter O-Ei form the basis of the tale, but it extends...

Japan Cuts 2016 Interview: Cut Above Award Winner Lily Franky on THE SHELL COLLECTOR

Novelist, illustrator, scriptwriter, radio host, and even as a singer, Lily Franky mastered many arts before his muse called him to become one of Japan’s most popular character actors.  Receiving Japan Cuts’ Cut Above award, Franky spoke with me about...