Blog Archives

Kiki’s Delivery Service (2014)

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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)

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Hana (2006)

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Hirokazu Kore-eda’s latest work, and his first foray into the period piece, is one of those films that before you see it, you find yourself wondering: what on earth could a semi-realist director best known for emotionally honest documentary style films do with the samurai genre? How will his organic style show through? How will he achieve the unexpected charm and humour that is such a strong characteristic in all his films to date no matter what the content?

But … (read more)

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Tony Takitani (2004)

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Quietly surreal in quality, populated by characters that redefine the words ‘quirky’ and ‘dysfunctional’, the internationally popular and highly critically acclaimed works of Japanese author Haruki Murakami are wondrous and fascinating and inarguably unique. But by the very same token, one probably would never have really considered any Murakami novel suitable for translation to film, if the idea ever even occurred to start with.

In taking Tony Takitani (a short story written almost a decade ago and printed in English … (read more)

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The Twilight Samurai (2002)

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Twilight Samurai is a small, understated film that will likely confound the (generic) expectations of most of its audience, so unless you get a kick out of paying ten bucks to sit in a dark room and feel alienated for two hours, listen up: this film’s primary strengths are dramatic, and it is, in fact, a melodrama.

This is a great thing, as it allows Twilight Samurai to address an imbalance that typifies just about every popular representation of samurai … (read more)

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