Monthly Archives:

July 2016

by InRO Staff Festival Coverage Film

Japan Cuts 2016 – Dispatch 3

The 10th anniversary edition of Japan Cuts, North America’s largest festival for new Japanese film, wrapped this past weekend. Our third and final dispatch features a 2002 romantic comedy from Ryosuke Hashiguchi and a 1982 cyberpunk watershed from Sogo Ishii (both of which played as part of the “classics” sidebar); Masao Adachi’s latest political…

July 25, 2016
by Matthew Lucas Film

Nagasaki: Memories of My Son | Yôji Yamada

When her son is killed in Nagasaki by the atomic bomb that ended World War II, Nobuko (Sayuri Yoshinaga), an elderly midwife faces life alone—that is, until her son’s (Kazunari Ninomiya) spirit returns to keep her company. Once preoccupied by a search for closure,…

July 25, 2016
by Zach Lewis Film

The Artist of Fasting | Masao Adachi

The most bluntly political of Japanese filmmakers, Masao Adachi returns to a comfortable controversy with his latest, The Artist of Fasting. Loosely based on a Franz Kafka short story, Adachi’s tale of a mute starvation protester hits on all the hallmarks of what made him…

July 25, 2016
by Simon Abrams Feature Articles Film

Why Haven’t You Heard of Kabali?

Kabali is an Indian gangster film, and the star vehicle for Tamil Nadu star Rajinikanth, the second highest paid Asian actor after Jackie Chan. Rajinikanth is big, but not in the eyes of the Western world; there are several practical reasons for this, chief among them being the…

July 25, 2016
by Sam C. Mac Film

Hush! | Ryosuke Hashiguchi

Ryosuke Hashiguchi’s filmography represents various generations’ desires for individual expression in a repressed Japanese society. His 1993 debut, A Touch of Fever, follows two rent boys who numb themselves to sex and refuse to admit their feelings for each other, while 2008’s All Around Us…

July 25, 2016
Before We Vanish by Sam C. Mac Film

The Childhood of a Leader | Brady Corbet

An aesthetic tour-de-force if also an empty and unfailingly derivative one, actor Brady Corbet’s directorial debut, The Childhood of a Leader, is based on a Jean-Paul Sartre short story, but pares down its psychologically complex source to essentially a gothic bad seed horror flick. Posing as a grander exploration of European…

July 22, 2016
by InRO Staff Festival Coverage Film

Japan Cuts 2016 – Dispatch 2

The 10th anniversary edition of Japan Cuts, North America’s largest festival for new Japanese film, runs from July 14th to the 24th, and we’re aiming to cover as many of the films in its program as we can. Our second dispatch features Junji Sakamoto’s new comedy; teen…

July 21, 2016
by Luke Gorham Film

The Shell Collector | Yoshifumi Tsubota

Sourcing material from Pulitzer Prize-winning author Anthony Doerr certainly lends Yoshifumi Tsubota’s second film a certain pedigree—and indeed, The Shell Collector looks as if it may prove an evocative drama of dueling personalities for much of its first half. Unfortunately, awkward tonal shifts, which may…

July 21, 2016
by Paul Attard Film

Kako: My Sullen Past | Shiro Maeda

Kako: My Sullen Past is a film that tells you life is boring. Even with the numerous odd events taking place, our titular character (Fumi Nikaido) only begins to notice the wonders of her life when her aunt, Mikiko (Kyoko Koizumi, a Kiyoshi Kurosawa favorite),…

July 21, 2016
by Chris Mello Film

The Projects | Junji Sakamoto

Set in low-income housing and offering glimpses into the hardships of the working class—the central couple’s son was killed by an overworked truck driver—Junji Sakamoto’s comedy The Projects lightly gestures towards class commentary, but a convoluted structure and a last-minute shift towards science fiction…

July 21, 2016
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