Talks with directors: Masaaki Yuasa

Bannermaasaku.pngIntroduction

With the release of The Night Is Short, Walk on Girl and Lu Over the Wall – both were screened at Fantasia Film Festival, 2017 has already been a very busy year for Masaaki Yuasa. To celebrate both releases, we sit down with Yuasa to talk about his past, the present and the future.

[The translation is courtesy of Fantasia Film Festival.]

Continue reading

Advertisements

監督との話し合い: Masaaki Yuasa [日本語]

Bannerluoverthewall.png

Introduction

With the release of The Night Is Short, Walk on Girl and Lu Over the Wall – both were screened at Fantasia Film Festival, 2017 has already been a very busy year for Masaaki Yuasa. To celebrate both releases, we sit down with Yuasa to talk about his past, the present and the future.

[This interview is in Japanese. The English translation will be published in the coming weeks]

Continue reading

Swaying Mariko (2017) Review

Bannermariko.png

“[It] may at times feel rough around the edges, but Koji Segawa crafted a strange, compelling and (..) slightly confronting slice of life narrative (…) that [shows] that it is never good to leave things unsaid – and that only communication between subjects can mend a relationship and can safe subjects from the no-good position they fundamentally are.”

Introduction

While in Japan, Tanaka Jun, director of Bamy, invited me for a evening of drinking, eating and film discussion. Also invited was Matsumura Shingo, the director of Love And Goodbye and Hawaii. But before our meeting Tanaka asked if another director friend of his could join our meeting. Of course, we said yes and that is how we met Koji Segawa, the director of Mothwoman (2008) and Kogeonna Warau (2011).

Continue reading

Satoshi: a move for tomorrow (2016) Review

bannersatoshi.png

“Matsuyama Kenichi’s splendid performance turns the narrative into a very moving character study of Satoshi Murayama, but, above all, into a beautiful love-letter to the art of Shogi.”

Introduction

Shogi might already have been featured in many manga and anime, but, given the popularity of Shogi, it might be surprising that it took so long for someone to create a biopic about a famous player (narra-note 1). Well, the wait is over. Satoshi: A Move For Tomorrow, based on the nonfiction novel Satoshi no Seishun (2000) by Yoshio Osaki, concerns the short life of Shogi prodigy Satoshi Murayama (June 15, 1969-August 8, 1998), who struggled with nephrotic syndrome from childhood onward and, in the end, also with cancer.

Continue reading

監督との話し合い: Kenji Yamauchi [日本語]

bannerkenji

Introduction

Our third guest for Talks with directors is Kenji Yamauchi, director of Being Mitsuko (2011), her father my lover (2015) and, of course, At the Terrace (2016). We’re grateful that Kenji Yamauchi took the time to sit down with us to discuss various aspects of his work. He talks about how he got interested in cinema, his inspirations, the differences between theater and cinema and his future project.

Continue reading

Memoirs of a murderer (2017) review.

mermoirsmurderedbanner.png

“As long as one doesn’t expect to find any deep psychological truths on the nature of the serial killer in the narrative or a deep character study of a murderer as such, [the narrative] proves to be as thrilling and satisfying as the original was.”

Introduction

When Jung Byung-gil released his first mainstream feature confession of murder, he probably never expected his movie to become so popular and that it would become an award-winning movie – it won the thriller competition of the Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival for instance.

Continue reading

Japanese girls never die (2016) review

BannerJapanesegirls2.png

While (…) [the] narrative lacks some (…) provocative punch (…) the political protest message (…) is [nevertheless] sincerely felt.

Introduction

From time to time, ominous signs underline the various problems the Japanese society has to cope with. Men aren’t showing interest in relationships with women – the opposite is equally true – and the ongoing low birthrate that is produced thereby made 2017 the first year in which the Japanese population actually shrunk. On a more deeper societal level, sexual harassment is still prevalent, with one third of the woman reporting some form of sexual harassment in 2016.

Continue reading