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Realism (Offline)
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Thumbs up ***The Japanese Movie Thread (With a twist)*** - 09-22-2009, 03:24 AM

Okay, I think we should try something new in this thread.

This here would be the thread where everyone can review, or suggest, or promote Japanese films that they've seen.

However, to make things a little different, these are the rules:

1. No J-horror/gore movies
2. No Kurosawa movies (unless they're something we've never heard before)
3. No Takashi Miike movies (again, unless it's something rare)
4. No anime films, or live-action anime films.
5. No Godzilla/Ultraman/Kamen Rider stuff.

I think that these types of films only makes up a small portion of all Japanese movies, but when anyone discusses J-films, they don't derail enough into other categories.

Hopefully, this will make things a lot more interesting


I know a lot of you live in Japan, it shouldn't be too hard to watch something that is outside of those 5 categories.

Last edited by Miyavifan : 09-23-2009 at 01:03 AM.
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09-22-2009, 03:36 AM

Okay, I will start with one



苺のカケラ Ichigo no Kakera

Director: Shun Nakahara

For those of you interested in manga, or drawing manga, this is a good movie for you. Although the main story isn't about the publishing of manga per se, it has a lot to do with it. It's about a girl who has been drawing/writing manga for years but she has only had one good hit, everything since has been downhill. So she becomes more and more isolated and starts and is becoming more annoying to be around. Her own ego gets to her one day and everything falls apart. I thought this was a decent film that really requires some patience, and multiple viewings, cuz I didn't get it the first time. There were "fantasy" elements which messes up the viewer's definition of what's real and what's imagined. I thought there were a lot of good scenes in this movie, and the acting is really well...the story moves pretty slow (like most Japanese movies)...but manga fans would find something they probably can relate to, like this cool scene:



Pretty cool huh?

Last edited by Realism : 09-22-2009 at 03:39 AM.
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09-22-2009, 03:45 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Realism View Post
Pretty cool huh?
That is pretty cool! I might give it a watch!

I want to recommend one of my favorite Japanese movies. Dunno if it's been mentioned before (probably has), but I love it.

Zatoichi
IMDB link

Starring Kitano Takeshi ("Beat Takeshi") as a blind swordsman. It's almost like the typical "blind swordsman" story, except the director and creators took a lot of awesome liberties with it, like some little musical numbers you won't even realize are there until like ten seconds after they've started (it's really cool). Fantastic movie, amazing characters and dialogue, good story, wraps up nicely.

The sequel which came out last year, "市" (Ichi), is an alternate universe Zatoichi, so to speak, in which the blind swordsman is, in this case, a woman. It was decent but not as good as the 2003 version. There is an original version made before the one with Beat Takeshi but I have yet to see it.


光る物全て金ならず。
なんてしつけいいこいいけつしてんな。
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09-22-2009, 03:58 AM

^^Ha...I've seen just about every Kitano film except for that one....him being a swordsman just kinda threw me off guard, and turned me off a little


Here's another one I've seen recently:



明日の私の作り方 How to Become Myself of Tomorrow

Director: Jun Ichikawa

Well, I'm not gonna lie, this is probably the best teen movie I've seen. I mean, off the top of my head I really can't think of one that's better. It's really subtle, has a great story, doesn't have any romantic sappy BS, and most importantly, pretty realistic. It's the story about 2 girls. One who was kind of popular in school, and another who was bullied. So along the way, they find out about each other and start sending text messages through distant communication. I like how they never meet in the entire movie except for 1 scene kinda early on, which works much better. It adds to the realism where the more popular student, obviously won't sacrifice herself to be seen with a student of lower status. So later, after they graduate from high school, they go to different colleges, and they still communicate through text. They give advice to each other on their separate careers and things such as that, and more importantly, the roles they play in life. Juri, the main character, is a multi-layered person with many sides that she has to conform to in the society of Japan, you see it mostly through her school and her home. I find that she's much better of an actor than Erika Suwajiri (they both appeared in that popular TV series), but in this role you can see how talented she really is. So overall it's well-directed, has a welcoming pace, very comfortable style, a movie that anyone can watch and will appreciate. It's a great film.
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09-22-2009, 04:20 AM

So basically what you're saying is, this thread is now my "rent from Tsutaya" list.


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なんてしつけいいこいいけつしてんな。
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09-22-2009, 06:33 AM

Always: Sanchomo no yuhi directed by Takashi Yamazaki, which is about life in 1958 tokyo. Its about the daily lives of a neighbourhood near the tokyo tower, and the cool bit is that you'll catch glimpses of the tower half finished.

its a pretty family friendly feel good movie that i watched in tokyo last year.

this guy does a better review of it than i could:

Always San-chome no yuhi – revisiting the sunset on third street




i quite enjoyed it, and you could do alot worse if you've got nothing else to do.


there is one more thing,....

a few days ago i was channel hopping and caught the last bit of a film on some random cable channel, maybe you guys can help identify it:

this loner loser dude goes to a beach or lake resort, ogles the girls in a serial killer sort of way, then buys a pair of trunks to go swimming and tries to hit on a girl. she quickly tells him to get lost.
it then cuts to the girl walking home along a country path, and the guy starts to follow her. it turns into a chase across a rocky river bank where she falls, cracks her head, and either dies or is just unconscious.
loner loser dude then proceeds to rape her lifeless body, and when he's done he walks home and the movie ends.

it looked like an 80's film.

any ideas?
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09-22-2009, 03:21 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Realism View Post
I think that these types of films only makes up a small portion of all Japanese movies, but when anyone discusses J-films, they don't derail enough into other categories.
I like you. I hope you'll stay here longer than other newcomers.



Monday

Director: Sabu (Hiroyuki Tanaka)

The plot revolves around our good old friend - alcohol, and it's effects on a certain person. The story starts with a guy waking up in a hotel room without having any memories of what he's been doing for the past 24 hours and progresses as he tries to remember what happened with the help of clues from his pockets.
This black comedy/thriller has everything from bomb defusing, Yakuza bashing, to demons of some sort and should keep you satisfied to the very end.

Last edited by Aniki : 12-18-2010 at 08:38 PM. Reason: added a trailer
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09-22-2009, 06:14 PM

I'm not new at all....I've been a lurker for a long time.




歩く、人  Man Walking on Snow

Director: Masahito Kobayashi

This is a rare gem I found out of nowhere. This is your typical Japanese film, it's really, really slow. With long scenes of a man walking for the first 20 minutes. It tugs at your patience to see how far you can handle. But, after the first grueling 20 minutes, the story sets in, and you will become engaged in the small-town Life of an old man and his 2 sons. The story focuses on the tension between the younger son and the older son, one who is defined by his rural enviornment, and the other who is trying to break free and do his own thing in the world. I don't know who these actors are, but they were wonderful. The contrast is extremely well done, the actors all have great chemistry together. And there's some odd Japanese humor thrown in as well. I especially loved the ending, the final scene has a remarkable impact that emphasizes on finality and surrender. A really great film.
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09-23-2009, 06:12 AM



好きだ Su-Ki-Da

Director: Hiroshi Ishikawa

If it wasn't for the final scene.....this would be the most depressing film ever. In fact, I thought they should have removed that final scene, but still, it's a heartbreaking film nontheless. There is only 2 characters in this entire movie, even though the adult and teen versions were played by different actors, you really feel that they are the same person, which is even more amazing. The transition from teen to adult is one of the best I've seen in any film. This is one of those films where every scene is done in exquisite detail, the cinematography carries this film, and the strong characters and the plot enhances this movie as well. I think Aoi Miyazaki fans have all seen this one, it's a film that will stick with you for a long time.

Last edited by Realism : 09-23-2009 at 04:56 PM.
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09-25-2009, 05:44 AM



錆びたナイフ The Rusty Knife

1958

Director: Toshio Masuda


This is an old noir film, one of the thousands of old Japanese gangster films from back in the days. They really don't make it like this anymore. However, I didn't really enjoy this one too much. The first 15 minutes went by real fast with tons of information, and the main character doesn't even appear until 20 minutes into the film, which just adds to the confusion. The movie does settle down towards the middle and the main character really carries this film well. Yujiro Ishihara is a pretty commanding actor, even though he doesn't have any distinct features. The movie is at its best when its slowed down, examining the characters and the pressure they're under. I thought the story was quite refreshing, but it's a shame they never really "focused" on the story but instead just tried some of the old plot twist devices that we've a million times....I guess being in 1958 it was okay. Well, the villain was straight up lame, you could see it a mile away. Anyways, there were some gorgeous shots of 1950s Japan, the trains, the cinematography never gets old. It's quite an average film though....
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