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Japan Challenge (Official, May 2021)

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Traveller
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#121

Post by Traveller »

Onderhond wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:21 pm
Traveller wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:09 pm 17. Umbrella Flower (2000) - 8/10
Awwww, I thought I'd found another recommendation, turns out I never saw the EN title of this one before. Really loved Kaza-hana back in the day, it's up for a rewatch in the coming months/year. I'll see if I can prioritize :)
Was debating between 7/10 and 8/10 and settled with the latter but not adding it to my <400 list. It is, however, indeed a fine film with some moments that resonated with me. Speaking of recommendations, I was browsing through your starter list and found Oretachi no sekai (2007), which I haven't heard of before. Hoping to find some room for it and similar success.
Onderhond wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:21 pm
Traveller wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:09 pm 19. Tony Takitani (2004) - 9/10
Amazing film alright. :cheers:
Caught me off guard, but had me from the beginning. So simple, so beautiful. :cheers:
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But at the bottom, the immanent philosopher sees in the entire universe only the deepest longing for absolute annihilation, and it is as if he clearly hears the call that permeates all spheres of heaven: Redemption! Redemption! Death to our life! and the comforting answer: you will all find annihilation and be redeemed!
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sol
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#122

Post by sol »

Onderhond wrote: May 4th, 2021, 1:51 pm
sol wrote: May 4th, 2021, 1:42 pm this works overall but is a bit dull when there's no monsters on screen.
The comedy is a bit too dry and meta I guess (I absolutely loved it though), if you want more of the zaniness I suggest you watch Symbol (if you haven't already).
I have than one lined up to watch next. :thumbsup: I have never been big into mockumentaries in the first place, so I guess my reaction to that part of the film wasn't surprising. I was, however, expecting a larger ratio of fights to mocku interviews. :shrug:
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#123

Post by flavo5000 »

sol wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:38 pm
Onderhond wrote: May 4th, 2021, 1:51 pm
sol wrote: May 4th, 2021, 1:42 pm this works overall but is a bit dull when there's no monsters on screen.
The comedy is a bit too dry and meta I guess (I absolutely loved it though), if you want more of the zaniness I suggest you watch Symbol (if you haven't already).
I have than one lined up to watch next. :thumbsup: I have never been big into mockumentaries in the first place, so I guess my reaction to that part of the film wasn't surprising. I was, however, expecting a larger ratio of fights to mocku interviews. :shrug:
I showed Symbol for one of my work lunch movies, and it went over really well. Pretty much everyone just laughing uncomfortably and saying WTF is happening for the entire movie.
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#124

Post by Onderhond »

Traveller wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:36 pm Speaking of recommendations, I was browsing through your starter list and found Oretachi no sekai (2007), which I haven't heard of before. Hoping to find some room for it and similar success.
Might be hard to find and it's a pretty tricky film. Nakajima was still very young when he directed this one, it's also a quite grim and violent film. It's anything but subtle, on the other hand it's refreshing to see the loud voice of young people in cinema.
sol wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:38 pm I have never been big into mockumentaries in the first place, so I guess my reaction to that part of the film wasn't surprising. I was, however, expecting a larger ratio of fights to mocku interviews. :shrug:
Myeah, the entire joke of the film is the mundanity of his life, so while the fights are more fun to watch, the boredom of the interviews is functional (not unlike Miike's setup in Audition). It's understandable it grows old real fast if the comedy doesn't fully hit the mark, but it worked very well for me. Worth it for the shot of Matsumoto standing in a pair of giant undies :D
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#125

Post by Torgo »

Onderhond wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:21 pm
Traveller wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:09 pm 19. Tony Takitani (2004) - 9/10
Amazing film alright. :cheers:
:cheers:
flavo5000 wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:44 pm
sol wrote: May 4th, 2021, 3:38 pm
Onderhond wrote: May 4th, 2021, 1:51 pm if you want more of the zaniness I suggest you watch Symbol (if you haven't already).
I have than one lined up to watch next. :thumbsup: I have never been big into mockumentaries in the first place, so I guess my reaction to that part of the film wasn't surprising. I was, however, expecting a larger ratio of fights to mocku interviews. :shrug:
I showed Symbol for one of my work lunch movies, and it went over really well. Pretty much everyone just laughing uncomfortably and saying WTF is happening for the entire movie.
That Symbol is neither on the main list of 366 Weird movies or the Apocrypha is another big WTF ..

Much activity in this challenge - should overtake the Animation challenge pretty soon.
Naisu!
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#126

Post by maxwelldeux »

Challenge of the Rising Sun
1. Violent Cop (1989) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0098360/
2. Samurai I: Musashi Miyamoto (1954) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047444/

Started off the trilogy last night. It dragged a bit for me during the first two-thirds, but really started to come together towards the end. I'm sure quite a bit of this was just my lack of familiarity with the story, as I'm guessing it would make a ton more sense to someone who knew the history. But really nice scenery and fight scenes. I'm excited to see where this goes.

Oh, and film happened to get me two bronzes (Halliwell and AA Best Foreign Picture), which was fun to discover after the fact. :banana:
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#127

Post by RolandKirkSunglasses »

1. Ornamental Hairpin (1941): Hiroshi Shimizu has a knack for deceptively simple stories shot on location. This one takes place at an inn, several guests include an uppity professor, two boisterous kids accompanied by their grandfather, a young woman (Kinuyo Tanaka) from Tokyo and a soldier on leave (Chishu Ryu). Chishu cuts his foot on her ornamental hairpin, she returns to the inn for several reasons.

Partly comic with an undercurrent of despair, it's a brisk watch at 70 minutes yet you feel it could've gone on even longer to flesh out the characters, or like Kinuyo Tanaka maybe I just didn't want to leave the inn. Another enjoyable Hiroshi Shimizu flick, on-par with "Arigato-San".
Spoiler
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#128

Post by DudeLanez »

10. Tsuzurikata kyoshits (Composition Class, 1938, Yamamoto) 7/10
11. Bushidô zankoku monogatari (Cruel Tales of Bushido, 1963, Imai) 6/10
Japan Challenge
1. Sono yo no tsuma (That Night's Wife, 1930, Ozu) 7/10
2. Suzaki Paradaisu: Akashingô (Suzaki Paradise: Red Light District, 1956, Kawashima) 7/10
3. Ai no mukidashi (Love Exposure, 2008, Sono) 7/10
4. Shin Gojira (Shin Godzilla, 2016, Anno) 6/10
5. Akanishi Kakita (Capricious Young Man, 1936, Itami) 6/10
6. Karumen kokyô ni kaeru (Carmen Comes Home, 1951, Kinoshita) 7/10
7. Doro no kawa (Muddy River, 1981, Oguri) 8/10
8. Ninjô kami fûsen (Humanity and Paper Balloons, 1937, Yamanaka) 7/10
9. Nijûshi no hitomi (Twenty-Four Eyes, 1954, Kinoshita) 8/10
10. Tsuzurikata kyoshits (Composition Class, 1938, Yamamoto) 7/10
11. Bushidô zankoku monogatari (Cruel Tales of Bushido, 1963, Imai) 6/10

Recommendation: Mittsu no ai (Three Loves, 1954) by Masaki Kobayashi
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#129

Post by Knaldskalle »

Alright, time to get into this:

1. Tokyo Twilight (Ozu, 1959) OZU! I had the strongest sense of deja-vu throughout this movie, yet I know I haven't seen it before. I check IMDb and there was nothing about Ozu (or anyone else) remaking this, yet... I just felt like I've seen it before. It was odd. https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0051093/

2. Wicked City (Kawajiri, 1987). An anti-Ozu movie if ever that was one. Strange and incoherent with a strange plot that kinda sort comes together(?) near the end. It wasn't really bad, but I don't think I'd want to watch it again. https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0098692/
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#130

Post by Lu-Chin »

1. Tokyo Story (1953) 8/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0046438/
2. Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (1983) 7/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0085933/
3. The Sword of Doom (1966) 8/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0060277/
4. The Ghost of Yotsuya (1959) 7/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0155278/
5. Black Rain (1989) 7/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0097694/
6. Death by Hanging (1968) 6/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0063198/
7. The Insect Woman (1963) 8/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0057363/
8. Funeral Parade of Roses (1969) 8/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0064068/
9. The Ballad of Narayama (1958) 7/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0051980/
10. Tokyo Godfathers (2003) 8/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0388473/
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#131

Post by mjf314 »

Spoiler
1. Hero (2001) episodes 1-2 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0288960/
2. Hero (2001) episodes 3-4 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0288960/
3. Hero (2001) episodes 5-6 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0288960/
4. Hero (2001) episodes 7-8 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0288960/
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#132

Post by Melvelet »

1. Majo no takkyûbin 1989 — a.k.a. Kiki's Delivery Service 7/10
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0097814/

2. Anatahan 1953 — a.k.a. Ana-ta-han 6/10
This one was a weird experience as ecpected, a mix between and Old Hollywood movie with an "exotic" setting (I usually end up liking their setting) and then Japanese actors, a Japanese film crew and Japanese dialogues with English (but Russian-style) dubbing and narrator (we never quite know which of the persons is the narrator...although most of them aren't fleshed-out characters anyway). The characters spend a lot of time drinking self-brewed liquor and lazing around (and not really doing anything for the abundance of food they seem to have, not to mention never doing much to produce the liqour) and the "men turn primal" theme is a bit simplistic but overall it's enjoyable. I imagine the shots of nudity were edited into the later version, they managed to get away from Hayes' Code by producing in Japan but even for Japanese movies that's a rather early instance of nudity. It's a unique movie overall though.

3. Matatabi 1973 — a.k.a. The Wanderers 6/10
More comedy than I expected but with quite a bit of graphic violence. It's also weird somehow and the figting scenes were hilarious as nobody ends up being as tough as they portray themselves. The time where honor was supposedly more at the base of society is ridiculed instead of being even half as heroic as it is usually portrayed, there's no badass samurai here that easily kicks everyone's ass.

IMDB links:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0097814/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0046712/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0070365/
Current recommendation: Mandala (1981)


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#133

Post by Onderhond »

Melvelet wrote: May 5th, 2021, 2:31 pm ...
Can you update the OP with people's recommends that have been added along the way?
Maybe you're busy doing that right now though, so sorry if I jumped the gun!
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#134

Post by Traveller »

21. Warm Water Under a Red Bridge (2001) - 5/10
22. Sakuran (2006) - 8/10
23. Vital (2004) - 6/10
24. Versus (2000) - 3/10
25. Satan's Sword (1960) - 7/10

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0289054/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0794338/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0417243/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0275773/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0409866/
ICM
May Challenge: Image
But at the bottom, the immanent philosopher sees in the entire universe only the deepest longing for absolute annihilation, and it is as if he clearly hears the call that permeates all spheres of heaven: Redemption! Redemption! Death to our life! and the comforting answer: you will all find annihilation and be redeemed!
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#135

Post by sol »

Big Man Japan
1. One Cut of the Dead (2017)
2. Tetsuo II: Body Hammer (1992)
3. Tetsuo - The Bullet Man (2009)
4. A Colt is My Passport (1967)
5. August in the Water (1995)
6. The Forest of Love (2019)
7. One Missed Call (2003)
8. Big Man Japan (2007)
9. Symbol (2009) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1410261/

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While the Kafkaesque, near Cube-like mystery that the Japanese man here faces is always far more intriguing than the Mexican wrestler's story, the two plotlines eventually converge in one of the funniest scenes ever committed to film. From that point onward, the movie also gets more and more intriguing, ultimately providing much to ponder about our place in the world and the difference that the smallest of actions can make. Great lead performance too.
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#136

Post by flavo5000 »

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13. Aoi haru a.k.a. Blue Spring (Toshiaki Toyoda, 2001) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0309291/
Blue Spring follows a group of violent, misanthropic high schoolers in one of the most run-down, unruly and undisciplined schools I've ever seen as they vie for power and a sense of belonging in the face of an uncaring world. This one was really good. Very good directing and use of music that captures the nihilistic spirit of the characters really well. Between this and my recent watch of 9 Souls, I should probably prioritize more Toyoda to watch in near future.

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14. Zonbi jieitai a.k.a. Zombie Self-Defense Force (Naoyuki Tomomatsu, 2006) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0879265/
From the co-director of Vampire Girl vs Frankenstein and director of Stacy comes an extremely low budget fairly mindless and cheesy zombie flick that has a dirt stupid plot but surprisingly gory effects given the presumed budget limitations. It isn't going to win any awards and is definitely at least a couple steps down from the typical Sushi Typhoon production but you might get some mild entertainment out of its over-the-top bloody antics.

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15. Yagyû ichizoku no inbô a.k.a. Shogun's Samurai (Kinji Fukasaku, 1978) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0078513/
This densely-plotted samurai epic gives a story worthy of a Shakespearean tragedy or a gangster saga and involves family at each other's throats through sinister machinations in pursuit of the throne after the previous shogun is poisoned to death. While it takes a little while to build all the disparate threads and start tying them together, the third act is suitably satisfying.

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16. Gojira tai Mosura tai Mekagojira: Tôkyô S.O.S. a.k.a. Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S (Masaaki Tezuka, 2003) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0366526/
Godzilla is on the warpath again. Should the Japanese government pull Mecha G back out of storage to take him on or should they heed the warnings of the tiny twins and let Mothra take a stab at the big fella? Well, here we have another Godzilla where the people in the movie make up the weakest parts. It's got some fun Godzilla vs Mothra and Godzilla vs Mecha Godzilla fights in there but in general is a pretty middle-of-the-road effort.
Spoiler
1. Yurîka a.k.a. Eureka (Shinji Aoyama, 2000)
2. Ai to makoto a.k.a. For Love's Sake (Takashi Miike, 2012)
3. Ninjô kami fûsen a.k.a. Humanity and Paper Balloons (Sadao Yamanaka, 1937)
4. Shôjo shôfu: Kemono michi a.k.a. Path of the Beast (Tatsumi Kumashiro, 1980)
5. Keiko desu kedo a.k.a. I Am Keiko (Sion Sono, 1997)
6. Gojô reisenki a.k.a. Gojoe: Spirit War Chronicle (Gakuryu Ishii, 2000)
7. Aihyôka: Gun-kyu a.k.a. Gun-Kyu: War Pigeon (Yûichi Kanemaru, 2008)
8. Tange Sazen yowa: Hyakuman ryô no tsubo a.k.a. Sazen Tange and the Pot Worth a Million Ryo (Sadao Yamanaka, 1935)
9. Hentai kazoku: Aniki no yomesan a.k.a. Abnormal Family (Masayuki Suo, 1984)
10. Burû firumu no onna a.k.a. Blue Film Woman (Kan Mukai, 1969)
11. Kutabare akutô-domo - Tantei jimusho 23 a.k.a. Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell Bastards (Seijun Suzuki, 1963)
12. Riyû a.k.a. The Motive (Nobuhiko Ôbayashi, 2004)
13. Aoi haru a.k.a. Blue Spring (Toshiaki Toyoda, 2001)
14. Zonbi jieitai a.k.a. Zombie Self-Defense Force (Naoyuki Tomomatsu, 2006)
15. Yagyû ichizoku no inbô a.k.a. Shogun's Samurai (Kinji Fukasaku, 1978)
16. Gojira tai Mosura tai Mekagojira: Tôkyô S.O.S. a.k.a. Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S (Masaaki Tezuka, 2003)
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#137

Post by Melvelet »

Onderhond wrote: May 5th, 2021, 2:43 pm
Melvelet wrote: May 5th, 2021, 2:31 pm ...
Can you update the OP with people's recommends that have been added along the way?
Maybe you're busy doing that right now though, so sorry if I jumped the gun!
I was just collecting/updating while you posted ;)
Everybody please doublecheck that their recommendation is listed
Recommendations after the respective recommending user watched it for the challenge now don't award a point anymore
Current recommendation: Mandala (1981)


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#138

Post by Onderhond »

sol wrote: May 5th, 2021, 3:10 pm While the Kafkaesque, near Cube-like mystery that the Japanese man here faces is always far more intriguing than the Mexican wrestler's story, the two plotlines eventually converge in one of the funniest scenes ever committed to film. From that point onward, the movie also gets more and more intriguing, ultimately providing much to ponder about our place in the world and the difference that the smallest of actions can make. Great lead performance too.
Glad you liked it! The lead = the director by the way. Kitano's 'nemesis' who followed a very similar route. Not sure why he stopped making films though :down:
Melvelet wrote: May 5th, 2021, 3:21 pm I was just collecting/updating while you posted ;)
Yeah, I figured that might be the case. Thanks!
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#139

Post by Bing147 »

1. Floating Weeds (1959) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0053390/
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#140

Post by Onderhond »

flavo5000 wrote: May 5th, 2021, 3:13 pm I should probably prioritize more Toyoda to watch in near future.
You definitely should. Hard to say which ones you should prioritize (probably best to look at availability at this point), but it's hard to go wrong with Toyoda imo.
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#141

Post by flavo5000 »

Onderhond wrote: May 5th, 2021, 3:31 pm
flavo5000 wrote: May 5th, 2021, 3:13 pm I should probably prioritize more Toyoda to watch in near future.
You definitely should. Hard to say which ones you should prioritize (probably best to look at availability at this point), but it's hard to go wrong with Toyoda imo.
Well, I have that 3-disc Third Window set so Pornstar or Unchain would probably be next.
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#142

Post by Onderhond »

flavo5000 wrote: May 5th, 2021, 3:40 pm Well, I have that 3-disc Third Window set so Pornstar or Unchain would probably be next.
Pornstar was pretty cool, very nihilistic though. Unchain is by far the weakest Toyoda imo.

The good news is that TWF announced a new Toyoda boxset (films not disclosed yet). Whatever's in there though, I probably need :D
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#143

Post by Onderhond »

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06. 3.0* - Kiba: Dark Knight Side Story [Kiba: Ankoku Kishi Gaiden] by Keita Amemiya (2011)

One of the many entries in the Garo universe, a tokusatsu franchise that has been going strong for the past 15 years. I'm not too familiar with the particulars, I never watched the original series, even so these stories tend to be so generic that it's easy enough to cherry-pick some spin-offs without missing anything essential. This spin-off deals with the backstory of Barago and Kiba, an old spirit who inhibits a Makai Armor. It ties in with the plot of the original series and it features some of its cast, but ultimately it's a pretty simple story of good vs evil, featuring a more than adequate amount of demonic battles. If you get lost, you simply need to watch more fantasy anime. What stands out the most is the art style here. I'll readily admit that not everything works and some parts look really cheap, even so the mix of different animation styles and live action is intriguing and gives this film a unique vibe. There's quite a lot happening in the short runtime and if you're looking for a fun but cheesy diversion, this short spin-off has you covered. Just don't expect anything grand.

Is this even a country?
xx. 3.5* - Asia Strikes Back [Ajia no Gyakushu] by Gakuryu Ishii (1983)
01. 2.5* - Another Heaven [Anaza Hevun] by Jôji Iida (2000)
02. 3.0* - His Motorbike, Her Island [Kare no Otobai, Kanojo no Shima] by Nobuhiko Ôbayashi (1986)
03. 3.0* - Lady Snowblood [Shurayukihime] by Toshiya Fujita (1973)
04. 3.0* - Oh Bomb [Aa Bakudan] by Kihachi Okamoto (1964)
05. 1.0* - Singapore Sling by Koji Wakamatsu (1993)
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#144

Post by Bing147 »

2. Lupin the 3rd: Castle of Cagliostro (1979) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0079833/

Had this one left over from the animation challenge (have a few more too) so figured why not. I have now seen all of Miyazaki's features, unless you consider the Future Boy Conan "film". (I do not)
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#145

Post by DudeLanez »

12. Anma to onna (The Masseurs and a Woman, 1938, Shimizu) 7/10
13. Kaze no naka no mendori (A Hen in the Wind, 1948, Ozu) 8/10
14. Shinjû: Ten no Amijima (Double Suicide, 1969, Shinoda) 5/10
Japan Challenge
1. Sono yo no tsuma (That Night's Wife, 1930, Ozu) 7/10
2. Suzaki Paradaisu: Akashingô (Suzaki Paradise: Red Light District, 1956, Kawashima) 7/10
3. Ai no mukidashi (Love Exposure, 2008, Sono) 7/10
4. Shin Gojira (Shin Godzilla, 2016, Anno) 6/10
5. Akanishi Kakita (Capricious Young Man, 1936, Itami) 6/10
6. Karumen kokyô ni kaeru (Carmen Comes Home, 1951, Kinoshita) 7/10
7. Doro no kawa (Muddy River, 1981, Oguri) 8/10
8. Ninjô kami fûsen (Humanity and Paper Balloons, 1937, Yamanaka) 7/10
9. Nijûshi no hitomi (Twenty-Four Eyes, 1954, Kinoshita) 8/10
10. Tsuzurikata kyoshits (Composition Class, 1938, Yamamoto) 7/10
11. Bushidô zankoku monogatari (Cruel Tales of Bushido, 1963, Imai) 6/10
12. Anma to onna (The Masseurs and a Woman, 1938, Shimizu) 7/10
13. Kaze no naka no mendori (A Hen in the Wind, 1948, Ozu) 8/10
14. Shinjû: Ten no Amijima (Double Suicide, 1969, Shinoda) 5/10

Recommendation: Mittsu no ai (Three Loves, 1954) by Masaki Kobayashi
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#147

Post by mjf314 »

mjf314 wrote: May 3rd, 2021, 8:20 am You're missing the runtimes for me. I watched 4 episodes of Hero so far. Most of the episodes are about 47 minutes. Episode 1 is 59 and episode 11 (the last episode) is 66. If it's easier to just use the average runtime, then it's about 50 minutes per episode.
@Melvelet:

I want to clarify the runtimes. It looks like you're counting each episode as 47 minutes (which is fine with me), but I'm counting every 2 episodes as 1 entry. So if it's 4 entries, then it should be 376 minutes (4 * 2 * 47).
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#148

Post by Melvelet »

mjf314 wrote: May 6th, 2021, 5:29 am
mjf314 wrote: May 3rd, 2021, 8:20 am You're missing the runtimes for me. I watched 4 episodes of Hero so far. Most of the episodes are about 47 minutes. Episode 1 is 59 and episode 11 (the last episode) is 66. If it's easier to just use the average runtime, then it's about 50 minutes per episode.
@Melvelet:

I want to clarify the runtimes. It looks like you're counting each episode as 47 minutes (which is fine with me), but I'm counting every 2 episodes as 1 entry. So if it's 4 entries, then it should be 376 minutes (4 * 2 * 47).
Ah, the problem was actually in the code because I put a flag for mini-series entries (although I'm currently not using that info in the stats). Will be fixed in my next update (and the first episode was counted as 59 minutes ;) )
Current recommendation: Mandala (1981)


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#149

Post by Onderhond »

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07. 3.5* - Samurai Fiction [SF: Episode One] by Hiroyuki Nakano (1998)

It's been ages since I last watched this film. It's easy to see why I liked it so much the first time around, but revisiting it now reveals it has lost quite a bit of its initial shine. Not that Samurai Fiction is a bad film, it's just that a lot of its standout elements don't feel quite as fresh anymore. The film offers a modern take on the chambara genre (samurai/sword fighting). Three men are sent to trail Kazamatsuri, a ruthless samurai who stole an important sword from their clan. When they confront the thief, he kills one of them and holds off the other two. Heishiro is the only one willing to persevere and resumes his quest to get the sword back. What makes Samurai Fiction fun are its anachronistic elements. Pops op color in the black and white cinematography, a more contemporary score and self-conscious performances make this a pretty amusing film. Nakano doesn't quite push it enough though, which is probably why it feels somewhat less distinctive now. A fun film, just a little less great the second time around.

Is this even a country?
xx. 3.5* - Asia Strikes Back [Ajia no Gyakushu] by Gakuryu Ishii (1983)
01. 2.5* - Another Heaven [Anaza Hevun] by Jôji Iida (2000)
02. 3.0* - His Motorbike, Her Island [Kare no Otobai, Kanojo no Shima] by Nobuhiko Ôbayashi (1986)
03. 3.0* - Lady Snowblood [Shurayukihime] by Toshiya Fujita (1973)
04. 3.0* - Oh Bomb [Aa Bakudan] by Kihachi Okamoto (1964)
05. 1.0* - Singapore Sling by Koji Wakamatsu (1993)
06. 3.0* - Kiba: Dark Knight Side Story [Kiba: Ankoku Kishi Gaiden] by Keita Amemiya (2011)
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#150

Post by mjf314 »

Spoiler
1. Hero (2001) episodes 1-2 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0288960/
2. Hero (2001) episodes 3-4 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0288960/
3. Hero (2001) episodes 5-6 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0288960/
4. Hero (2001) episodes 7-8 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0288960/
5. Hero (2001) episodes 9-10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0288960/

I have 1 episode left, so I guess I'll combine it with an episode of whatever I watch next.
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#151

Post by Melvelet »

With the next movie I begin my chronological 100 year challenge of Japanese cinema, let's see how far I can get during the challenge as I will probably only have 33% of my viewing for the 100 years challenge. The years up until the end of WWII are probably going to have a lot of rather short movies though (and for some years in the 20s only shorts are available)

4. Rojô no reikion 1921 — a.k.a. Souls on the Road 6/10
The earliest surving (or at least available) Japanese feature film. 3 stories are told simultanously, with flashbacks and all, some cool double exposition. That's generaIly cool. have a strong feeling that there were already Benshi narrators at that time and an integral part of the movie has been lost. So in the end I had quite a few problems to unterstand what's going on.

5. Minagoroshi no reika 1968 — a.k.a. I, the Executioner 8+/10
Wow, it's quite decent as a thriller/crime movie and I knew that Tai Kato was among the more stylish genre movie directors of his era but I didn't ecspect this one to be on par with the greatest of the Japanese New Wave. It constantly looks great and at it's best I would even say Yoshida-esque, towards the end it it remporarily turns into pure avantgarde. So I highly recommend it to everyone who loves the Japanese New Wave aesthetics. Plotwise it follows a serial killer who rapes and murders several woman who are friends with each other while there's also a possible connection with the recent suicide of a 16 year old boy. The perspective shifts between the serial killer, the police and the women without clearly focussing on any of them. The rape aspect might have some people roll their eyes (how did that become such an obsession with rape - and incest for that matter - in Japanese cinema?) but it's one of the movies where there's more to it than exploitation although there's some twists around it that could have been more reflected. As a thriller it ultimately doesn't reach the same brilliance as the visuals but it's entertaining and I usually find it easier to continuously enjoy the aesthetics when the plot is easier to follow than it is the case in more abstract art movies.

I'll consider using it as my recommendation.

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6. Dodesukaden 1970 — a.k.a. Dodes'ka-den 6/10

IMDB links:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0012631/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0122612/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0065649/
Spoiler
1. Majo no takkyûbin 1989 — a.k.a. Kiki's Delivery Service 7/10
2. Anatahan 1953 — a.k.a. Ana-ta-han 6/10
3. Matatabi 1973 — a.k.a. The Wanderers 6/10
4. Rojô no reikion 1921 — a.k.a. Souls on the Road 6/10
5. Minagoroshi no reika 1968 — a.k.a. I, the Executioner 8+/10
6. Dodesukaden 1970 — a.k.a. Dodes'ka-den 6/10
Current recommendation: Mandala (1981)


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#152

Post by ororama »

2. Retribution (2006) * 104 min.
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0843302/

Similar to Cure, a variation that seemed more crime/mystery and a little less horror.
Spoiler
1. The Sleeping Beast Within (1960) * 86 min.
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0053992/
*First time viewing.
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#153

Post by Torgo »

Melvelet wrote: May 6th, 2021, 9:27 am 6. Dodesukaden 1970 — a.k.a. Dodes'ka-den 6/10
Ouch! I recall you as a Kurosawa buff. Is this one of his lower rated films for you?
(Still one of the last major Kuro films for me to see since, um, forever)

Good luck with the 100 project :thumbsup:
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#154

Post by sol »

Onderhond wrote: May 5th, 2021, 3:23 pm
sol wrote: May 5th, 2021, 3:10 pm While the Kafkaesque, near Cube-like mystery that the Japanese man here faces is always far more intriguing than the Mexican wrestler's story, the two plotlines eventually converge in one of the funniest scenes ever committed to film. From that point onward, the movie also gets more and more intriguing, ultimately providing much to ponder about our place in the world and the difference that the smallest of actions can make. Great lead performance too.
Glad you liked it! The lead = the director by the way. Kitano's 'nemesis' who followed a very similar route. Not sure why he stopped making films though
Huh. I'm surprised I didn't realise it, but yeah he directed an amazing performance from himself. I especially loved his in-the-zone clicking while dreaming up various solutions to his predicament. And yeah, I loved R100 too, so I'll need to see if I can make room for his other film (Scabbard Samurai) this month.
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#155

Post by sol »

Big Man Japan
1. One Cut of the Dead (2017)
2. Tetsuo II: Body Hammer (1992)
3. Tetsuo - The Bullet Man (2009)
4. A Colt is My Passport (1967)
5. August in the Water (1995)
6. The Forest of Love (2019)
7. One Missed Call (2003)
8. Big Man Japan (2007)
9. Symbol (2009)
10. Tag (2015) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt4439120/

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This film begins on one of the most WTF notes ever with a graphic invisible attack that saws an entire schoolbus in half, followed by various wind attacks. Things then never let up, with many surprises best left unspoiled. While is does eventually reach a point at which the entire film feels weird simply for the sake of it, the solution that Sono reveals in the final twenty of minutes of the film is really thought-provoking. Reina Triendl is also excellent in the lead.

To be anybody reading this, please watch THIS film from Sion Sono this month, not my official recommendation. :unsure: And with that, Sono crosses my self-imposed minimal threshold and enters the top 20 of my favourite directors list. :ph43r:
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#156

Post by Onderhond »

sol wrote: May 6th, 2021, 12:56 pm so I'll need to see if I can make room for his other film (Scabbard Samurai) this month.
It's his weakest film imo (though I still liked it a lot), and it's probably more fun for people who love samurai/chambara stuff, but it still works very well as a comedy.

Also: maybe you know him from this clip (and similar) too:



As for your Tag nomination ... I can only support it! Lovely film, personal top 100 material for me.
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#157

Post by Lonewolf2003 »

4. Tokyo Tribe (2014, Sion Sono): 8.0 - Maybe the biggest feat Sono pulls of in this is to keep the manic energy level extremely high from the first second to the last. He manages to do so by keeping the camera constantly moving, I think there is no steady still shot in the entire movie. Having to listen to 2 hours of mediocre (at best) Japanese rap keeps me from loving in this more.

5. Kaette kita onna hissatsu ken [The Return of the Sister Street Fighter] (1975, Kazuhiko Yamaguchi): 7.5 - As much fun as the previous two. The fights are better shot, cause Yamaguchi learned to keep his camera steady. Making this 3rd entry the 2nd best. The biggest flaws this has, beside rehashing the same formulaic plot, is that Etsuko Shihomi is almost not in the movie besides those fights. Instead most of the time is spent with the villains. Like the producers decided to shot enough material with them already, so that after the only had to shot some fights to fill it’s short running time.

6. Onna hissatsu godan ken [Sister Street Fighter: Fifth Level Fist] (1976, Shigehiro Ozawa): 6.5 - An unofficial sequel, that's only related to the other entries in that it stars Etsuko Shihomi as a female martial artist, plus that it is directed by Shigehiro Ozawa. who directed the original Street Fighter movies.Shihomi plays a different character than before. The other big difference is that this one spends much more time on plot and character development. Alas that does leave less to time for fights. When the ass kicking and gut punching finally does happen in a prolonged fight scene, it is the highlight of the movie and the best fight sequence in the series. But that’s after a hour in a 75 min movie. After this the movie ends at a weird abrupt moment. All with all this the best written, but also the least entertaining entry in the series. It groovy 70s score gives it some more 70s genre film credits.
P.S. sol just had a heart attack that they called the fourth entry Fifth Level Fist ;)

7. Ai-naki mori de sakebe [The Forest of Love] (2019, Sion Sono): 8.2 - Described by many as an aggregation of all the usual Sono elements. The first half is a touching portrait of two girls affected by a tragedy. I think this half is stylistic the most interesting part of the movie. The second half (after Joe Murata takes over the film production) it conveys very well how it's to be trapped in an abusive relationship. Joe Murata is extremely repulsive, but like the characters I felt trapped by him. In many similar movies I often get agitated by the protagonist about why they don't step out of this relationship. But in this one I rationally I understood also that this would be the correct move, but emotionally felt as trapped by him.

Watching these three movies from Sono does make clear for me why I like and admire him as a director, but besides this hadn't favorited any yet: I think Sono is a much, much better director than a writer. In his best movies he's able to overcome the flaws in his plots by creating an emotional impact or an audiovisual experience, but in his lesser movies his weak writing skills do show.

The Taste of Blood on White Rice
1. Onna hissatsu ken [Sister Street Fighter] (1974, Kazuhiko Yamaguchi) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0073714/: 8.0
2. Onna hissatsu ken: kiki ippatsu [Sister Street Fighter 2: Hanging By A Thread] (1974, Kazuhiko Yamaguchi) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0183704/: 7.5
3. Kibô no kuni [The Land of Hope] (2012, Sion Sono) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2283017: 6.5
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#158

Post by Traveller »

26. Nanami: The Inferno of First Love (1968) - 7/10
27. Pistol Opera (2001) - 4/10
28. A Distant Cry from Spring (1980) - 7/10
29. A Woman's Life (1963) - 8/10
30. Shinsengumi Chronicles (1963) - 6/10

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0061754/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0285906/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0080843/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0057383/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0227492/
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But at the bottom, the immanent philosopher sees in the entire universe only the deepest longing for absolute annihilation, and it is as if he clearly hears the call that permeates all spheres of heaven: Redemption! Redemption! Death to our life! and the comforting answer: you will all find annihilation and be redeemed!
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#159

Post by Onderhond »

Traveller wrote: May 6th, 2021, 3:01 pm 27. Pistol Opera (2001) - 4/10
Hehe, absolutely loved this film, but I can see how it's pretty divisive.
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#160

Post by clemmetarey »

3. Hakai (1962) 7/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0056051/
This film took me by surprise, it deals with a subject that I wasn't aware about. The film isn't heavy-handed at all and let the story flow well. The scenery of the village and the snow looks great.

4. Entotsu no mieru basho (1953) 6/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0045731/
The film deals with the subject of living a modest life very well, without the melodramatic usually associated with the subject.

5. Gishiki (1971) 6/10 https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0066639/
Ôshima continues to challenge japanese society with this film about a family slowly falling apart. The disconnection between the scenes made it a bit hard to follow.
Spoiler
1. Shinsengumi shimatsuki (1963) 5/10
2. Nogiku no gotoki kimi nariki (1955) 5/10
3. Hakai (1962) 7/10
4. Entotsu no mieru basho (1953) 6/10
5. Gishiki (1971) 6/10
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