“Strings of gold sway gently in the wind, They play a sweet and gentle melody, At night I walk in the pale moonlight, Together with a dream, A secret dream..” Having spent most of my adolescence hunting down Japanese films at my local video stores and rummaging through endless online forums to discover new titles,

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Sailor Suit and Machine Gun 1981 Cover Photo

To say that Shinji Sômai is one of the greats of cinema is an understatement. He is quoted as describing his directing philosophy as “humanity observing humanity,” his approach was vastly different from that seen in Japan at the time. As such, his films all have an unyielding  realism to their story and characters, strongly

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Re:Born (2016) Cover Photo

The evolution of action films has come a long way over the years; from cheesy one-liners and over the top shootouts, the genre has progressed to slick visuals and epic hand-to-hand combat. Although the old style is still prevalent with fans today, these present-day techniques are vastly superior in displayed skill from both director and

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Creepy Hide and Seek Review

There have been several films made about the Japanese urban legend known as Hitori Kakurenbo. There are also several ways that the title has been presented in English: hide and seek with a ghost, one man hide and seek or even hide and seek with yourself. It’s difficult to track it back to its origins,

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I distinctly remember when it was announced that Takashi Shimizu, one of the most consistent contributors to Japanese horror over the last two decades, was going to direct a film based on the infamous Aokigahara forest. It came as a surprise to those of us who were still waiting on a similar project to come

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Bloody Muscle Bodybuilder in Hell Cover Photo

Being one of the most attributed inspirations in filmmaking, filmmakers around the world have cited The Evil Dead series as a motivation to create cinema for themselves. The mastery of the low-budget filmmaking process, which led to various highly esteemed horror films, still hold its own to this day in the horror genre – ingenuity

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Brutal Film Review

Extreme horror is an interesting subset within the wider genre of scary movies as a whole. For some, it is a wholly unapproachable category to be whispered of but avoided. To other gorehounds, rattling off the specific films you’ve seen can function something like a badge of courage for what you’ve endured and come out

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Japanese Monster Slashers

It’s Halloween and I therefore decided to do a recap of a horror-related tropes or subgenre in Japanese entertainment! An obvious choice, taking up a fair amount of the genre landscape, are slashers – something much less associated to Japanese cinema. Now, clearly, Japan has no shortage of iconic slasher movies: …However, as my core

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Labyrinth of Cinema Review

It is hard to know where to begin when discussing the epic that is Labyrinth of Cinema, the final directorial feature of Nobuhiko Obayashi. Perhaps it is best to start with the director himself. With a career spanning sixty years, Obayashi has garnered critical acclaim and an incredible cult following. From his first feature House

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Interview with Toshiaki Toyoda

When considering currently acclaimed Japanese filmmakers there are several names that can readily spring to mind. From the exhaustively prolific creations of Takashi Miike to the bombastic and arresting works of Sion Sono or even the award-winning output of Hirokazu Kore-eda. By every right, Toshiaki Toyoda is a name that should be just as well

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