a page of madness

film writing by nicholas vroman

Archive for August 2013

Japanese Movie Posters 3

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Ore_wa_Jigoku_e_yuku_poster

Ore wa jigoku e yuku / 俺は地獄へ行く (1961)

監督 野口博志                                 Director: Hiroshi Noguchi
脚本 星川清司                                 Script : Seiji Hoshikawa
撮影 永塚一栄                                 Cinematography: Kazue Nakatsuka

キャスト                                         Cast
宍戸錠                                             Jo Shishido
小高雄二                                         Yuuji Odaka
笹森礼子                                         Reiko Sasamori
香月美奈子                                      Minako Kazuki

This poster is available to buy ($45 + $20 shipping and handling from Japan). Click here to purchase.

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Japanese Movie Posters 2

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Yami_ni_hikaru_me_poster

Yami ni kikaru me / 闇に光る眼 (1960)

監督 春原政久                              Director: Masahisa Sunohara
脚本 阿部桂一                              Script : Keiichi Abe
撮影 山崎安一郎                          Cinematography: Yasuichiro Yamazaki

キャスト                                        Cast
木村繁夫                                        Shigeko Kimura
中村貴美子                                   Kimiko Nakamura
庄司好子                                        Yoshiko Shouji

This poster is available to buy ($45 + $20 shipping and handling from Japan). Click here to purchase.

Japanese Movie Posters 1

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Kyou_fu_no_taiketsu

Kyou fu no taiketsu / 恐怖の対決 (1958)

監督 岩間鶴夫                            Director: Tsuruo Iwama
脚本 馬場当                               Script : Ataru Baba
富田義朗                                               Yoshiro Tomita
製作 長島豊次郎                         Producer: Toyojiro Nagashima
撮影 小杉正雄                            Cinematography: Kosugi Masuo

キャスト                                      Cast
大木実                                         Minoru Ooki
清川新吾                                      Shingo Kiyokawa
浦辺粂子                                      Kumiko Urabe
有沢正子                                      Masako Arisawa
杉田弘子                                      Hiroko Sugita

This poster is available for sale ($45 + $20 shipping and handling from Japan. Click here to purchase.

Written by Nicholas Vroman

August 6, 2013 at 10:36 am

Enoshima Prism / 江ノ島プリズム

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250px-Enoshima_Prism-p1Hot on the heals of his gentle coming of age story, Taidachi no Shima Uta, Yasuhiro Yoshida’s released Enoshima Prism, a shaggy dog sentimental Groundhog’s Day variation. Three childhood friends, Shuta (Sota Fukushi, star of the Kamen Rider series), Saku (Shuhei Nomura) and Michiru (Tsubasa Honda), reach a turning point in their late teens. Actually, Saku dies unexpectedly. Shuta, though, stumbles upon a way to go back in time. He soon figures he can change the direction of events and maybe save his friend’s life. The film goes through a series of variations, where Shuta attempts to alter the course of history, despite the advice of ghost teen trapped in time, Kyogo (Honoko Mika). Somewhere in there are hints of a fairly chaste love triangle. And Yoshida throws in a few head-scratchers – a fireworks scene (why do filmmakers even try?) and something (maybe it worked on paper) involving people dressed in Indian regalia. Yoshida frosts his cake a little too much. Good ideas and good actors get a little bogged down in all the fluff.

Originally published in EL Magazine, August 2013

Homesick

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BMeiz96CYAAjJzZSatoru Hirohara’s slackerly comedies belie the usual formulas and bad habits of the genre and instead subtly dig deeper into questions of responsibility, connections and ties. His films, as light as they seem, seem to be documenting (through fiction) the national zeitgeist of a generation marked by the final breaking social contracts and the legacy of 3.11. What makes Homesick so refreshing is its optimism in the face of a dead end future. Here, Kenji (Tomohiro Kaku) freshly-fired from his job, isolated in the big city and on the verge of losing the family house, is at a dead end. Enter a trio of more-than-precocious boys (beautifully directed and played by Yuuki Kaneda, Tsubasa Funasaki and Shou Honma), who turn his world upside down. It starts with the kids graffiti-ing his home and quickly builds into full-scale kid-war. Kenji turns all this crazy energy into building a giant cardboard triceratops. The simple metaphor turning destructive energy into creativity may be one of the more radical statements any director working in Japan can make today.

Originally published in EL Magazine, August 2013

Written by Nicholas Vroman

August 1, 2013 at 4:56 am

Akaboshi / あかぼし

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BLRkbWQCQAAxwQiRyohei Yoshino’s thrilling feature film debut, Akaboshi, revolves around a woman (Romi Park), who in the throes of grief at the loss of her husband is taken in by a religious cult. Her new community offers genuine relief. But soon she begins losing it more and more. The crutch of the cult, petty rivalries and her steadfast refusal to meaningfully deal with her loss play havoc on her and her son’s lives. Her completely endearing son, Aren, bears witness to and is the brunt of her dangerous disengagement with reality. Through the cult, he meets Vlada, a just-teen girl who’s ready to fly the coup from her stifling, though oddly well-meaning parents. They run away. Well, at least she does. He’s still just a kid. He returns to take care of his mother. There’s not a false note in Yoshino’s direction or script. The casting is first class. Aren (his real name) takes on an incredibly difficult role and brings out nuances and devastatingly touching moments that only a brilliant 10-year old can do.

Originally published in EL Magazine, August 2013.

Written by Nicholas Vroman

August 1, 2013 at 4:51 am