Blog Archives

The Boy and the Beast (2015)

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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)

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The Great Passage (2013)

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You might think that a movie about compiling a dictionary – even the first ever “living dictionary” – is going to be about as compelling as watching paint dry. Under normal circumstances you’d probably be right, but normal circumstances don’t take The Great Passage’s sterling cast and sensitive filmmaker Yuya Ishii’s deft handling of everyday social interactions into account.

It’s 1995 (pre-computing technology, if you can believe that. Or, you know, check with Wiki) and Mitsuya Majime (Ryuhei Matsuda, Big (read more)

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Wolf Children (2012)

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Wolf Children screens nationwide at Reelanime, 13th – 26th of September. Check the website for session times.

You could probably be forgiven for wondering whether you’re watching a secret project of Hayao Miyazaki’s in Mamoru Hosoda’s new animated feature film Wolf Children. His sweet-bordering-on-saccharine domestic fable about two siblings gifted with the tendency to turn into wolves shares many a standard “Ghiblism” – the quaint rural setting to which the family escapes the stress of urban life; the … (read more)

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Chronicle of My Mother (2011)

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Chronicle of my Mother

Familial duty and responsibility to one’s parents makes Chronicle of My Mother a film that will resonate with Asian audiences far more than for the rest of us. And yes, the title is going to make most people think they’re about to see a Japanese version of Pedro Almodóvar’s All About My Mother, but the two films have little in common other than the titular parental unit. In Harada Masato’s (Inugami) lyrical and poetic meditation on family, … (read more)

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The Summit: A Chronicle of Stones (2009)

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Movies about mountain climbing are usually epic tales of human survival, and The Summit: A Chronicle of Stones is another fine example of this genre. We live in an era when every peak of every mountain has been conquered, but it is not uncommon for even today’s mountain climbers to run into trouble during their expeditions, despite having available to them sophisticated equipment, greater understanding about the human body’s functioning at high altitudes, and knowledge passed on by previous generations … (read more)

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