Author Archives: Deni

The Boy and the Beast (2015)

(from , dir: )

Mamoru Hosada has in some respects done what it seemed next to impossible to do a decade ago — make a name for himself in the Japanese animated feature film space. With the glut of it’s-a-movie-of-the-series films — understandably because that’s where the money’s at domestically — features that find their way beyond Japan’s borders and onto our cinema screens are a little few and far between and there are only a handful of directors known in the mainstream outside … (read more)

Comments Off on The Boy and the Beast (2015)

Myths & Legends programme at GoMA

It’s always worth checking out the new three-monthly programmes at Brisbane’s Gallery of Modern Art cinema, and the January to March line up presents a few pearls of Asian cinema that you may want to catch on the big screen, even if you have seen them before (because I don’t know about you, but any opportunity to see Seven Samurai at the cinema is to be taken, as far as I’m concerned):

  • Kuroneko (1968, dir. Kaneto Shindou) – Sat 31
(read more)
Posted in Cinema Screenings | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Myths & Legends programme at GoMA

Lupin III (2014)

(from , dir: )

Art thief adventure series Lupin III and frenetic cult director Ryuhei Kitamura (Godzilla: Final WarsVersus) seems like it could be a match made in heaven. Kitamura is known for his energetic, reality defying, somewhat gaggy but exceedingly enjoyable action movies, and Lupin is known for his energetic, law-enforcement defying, seemingly impossible but somehow charming art heists. The combination in this 2014 live action movie makes for a moderately fun crime thriller that is never too serious … (read more)

Comments Off on Lupin III (2014)

Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno & The Legend Ends (2014)

(from , dir: )

I’ll be upfront with you; I’m not going to review Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno and Rurouni Kenshin: The Legend Ends separately. Considering how close together their theatrical releases in Japan were, it could be argued they’re just one film with about a month long intermission (if you’re old enough to remember those). Also considering the cliff-hanger Kyoto Inferno ends on ­Empire Strikes Back style I’d also run a much bigger risk of spoiling far too many things if I … (read more)

Comments Off on Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno & The Legend Ends (2014)

Short Peace (2013)

Although the theme for the Sunrise/Shochiku multimedia project Short Peace was apparently “Japan” it seems to me that the ‘peace’ part of the title is far more telling, because in one way or another each short in this 4-film anthology is about conflict. Not only that, but unless I’m reading far too much into it, there is something to be learned from each of these battles.

The first cab off the rank after the energetically ethereal opening title sequence is … (read more)

Comments Off on Short Peace (2013)

Thermae Romae 2 (2014)

(from , dir: )

I’ll admit, I decided to go to see the sequel to the surprisingly entertaining Thermae Romae with some trepidation. Basically I’m not a fan of comedies in general, so that I enjoyed the first film made a few of my friends check to make sure I was still the same person. I’m seriously considering not telling them that I enjoyed the sequel almost as much.

Although, perhaps that was a no-brainer. There’s no surprises in this follow up — it’s … (read more)

Comments Off on Thermae Romae 2 (2014)

All-Round Appraiser Q: The Eyes of Mona Lisa (2014)

(from , dir: )

One of the joys of the Japanese Film Festival every year for me is discovering the unexpected gem. Film festivals are of course great for those films that you’ve heard about and been dying to see that will likely never make it to your local cinema, but I always make a point of picking a few random films as well — films that I’ve heard nothing about; often films that I don’t even bother to read the synopsis for. Without … (read more)

Comments Off on All-Round Appraiser Q: The Eyes of Mona Lisa (2014)

Kiki’s Delivery Service (2014)

(from , dir: )

We’ve probably had this conversation before — the pros and cons of the Live Action Film. When they’re done well, they enhance the source and become another aspect of effective cross-stream marketing that people are happy to pay to see. They win new fans and invigorate the existing ones. But let’s not kid ourselves thinking that any company sinks millions of dollars (or yen in this case) into a film better known in anime or manga out of their sense … (read more)

Comments Off on Kiki’s Delivery Service (2014)