Blog Archives

The Fencing Master (1962)

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Knowing that The Fencing Master was written by the great Akira Kurosawa probably does the film few favours in the mind of the viewer. The mere mention of the Kurosawa name immediately raises expectations, but how many films can even come close to the standard set by his many masterpieces? As such, it is probably best to forget about Kurosawa’s involvement when viewing The Fencing Master, and just enjoy the film for what it is – a solid period … (read more)

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Burst City (1982)

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Burst City, to me, is not only the name of a film, but also a fairly accurate description of my mind after being confronted by two hours of Ishii Sogo punk rock mayhem. After all, what can synapses do, when faced with such an assault on the senses, but explode? It’s the sensible thing to do.

This is a film that has a reputation for being an important stepping stone in the development of Japanese cinema. It is widely … (read more)

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The Bad Sleep Well (1960)

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Few would argue that Akira Kurosawa is one of the greatest directors the world has ever seen. The number of masterpieces he produced is simply staggering. If you look back at the catalogue of his works, you notice that at the heart of many of these great films are partnerships with other extremely talented individuals. His long collaboration with Toshiro Mifune, for example, is usually regarded as one of the greatest director/actor partnerships in the history of cinema. Kurosawa’s work … (read more)

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Electric Dragon 80,000V (2001)

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Common sense dictates that any film featuring the line “He conducts electricity! He talks to reptiles! He’s the man!” is bound to be good. But there are certain elements that separate the good from the great, and director Ishii Sogo has brought them all to Electric Dragon 80000V. Tadanobu Asano looking for lizards in the back streets and sewers of Tokyo? Masatoshi Nagase as the coolest half-deity assassin you’ve ever seen? A soundtrack so loud that it could turn … (read more)

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