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Scrap Heaven (2005)

(from , dir: )

Scrap Heaven is exactly the kind of title that you often see attached to the sorts of horribly angsty indy movies that this one almost is. While the movie certainly goes downhill after its very nifty opening act, it’s above average for what it is.

Singo (Ryo Case) is a meek, disenchanted cop who fantasises about heroism as he drives his desk. One day he finds himself on a bus with a hyperactive and mischievous toilet cleaner, Tetsu (Jô Odagiri), … (read more)

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Princess Raccoon (2005)

(from , dir: )

Whoa. Weird.

Seijun Suzuki’s Princess Raccoon is frequently wonderful, frequently irritating, always gorgeous to look at and mostly pretty difficult to follow. Drawing upon the rich Japanese fields of kabuki plays and tanuki folklore, veteran director Suzuki has sought to create an absurd, colourful funhouse of a musical, and has mostly succeeded.

The mythical tanuki is a shapeshifting, fun-loving and mischievous raccoon dog, and we are informed at the movie’s opening that love between a human and a tanuki is … (read more)

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