Maniac Driver is a 2020 Japanese horror thriller, written and directed by Kurando Mitsutake. Mitsutake has worked in many areas of film production but is most notable as director of Samurai Avenger: The Blind Wolf (2009) and Gun Woman (2014). Following a personal tragedy, a taxi driver randomly stalks and kills his female passengers in

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  Despite being one of Japan’s biggest film studios throughout the late 40s and 50s during the golden age of Japanese cinema, Daiei was struggling by the mid-60s and had to slash budgets for their productions. This eventually led to a merger with Nikkatsu in 1970, followed by bankruptcy in 1971. Somewhat overlooked is Daiei’s

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lets make our teacher have a miscarriage

Eichi Sato, known better in the following years for his work on the live-action adaptations of Lychee Hikari Club (2016) and Miso Misou (2018), found his way to shock us from the very beginning with his debut movie. Let’s Make the Teacher Have a Miscarriage Club (2011) is a film with many flaws, but its

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  After File 01 went off with a bang, Koji Shiraishi’s Senritsu Kaiki File Kowasugi! File 02: Shivering Ghost (2012) tries something different and turns out unexpectedly good. The first episode of the mockumentary series didn’t disappoint in serving Koji’s found footage brands and Japanese myth goodness, showing how his knack for storytelling and genre

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Audition 1999

Audition (1999) is the scariest movie of all time. I say that without hesitation or hyperbole. No other director is as effective with their imagery as Takashi Miike is here, and no other film elicits fright as consistently on a tenth viewing as the first. The film is a delightful descent into madness executed nigh

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It’s understandable why Japanese filmmakers focus so often on the feudal era in their horror cinema. It’s a setting so naturally horrific in the plight and pain of the peasant class that few supernatural elements are necessary to invoke dread in audiences. The stark reality of daily life alone is enough to make the viewer

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It has now been 24 hours since I watched Pulse (2001), and I still find myself at a loss. It was a movie that I desperately wanted to enjoy, a cardinal sin for a reviewer who should go in with a blank slate and little expectations. The weight of preconceived notions can hang about the

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When looking at the origins of sukeban media, the first representation of the genre came in 1967 with Taro Bonten’s Modern Delinquent Girl Stories manga; with the first proper sukeban film, Girl Boss: Broken Justice, not coming later until 1969. That isn’t to say, however, that vestiges of these themes weren’t explored prior to this.

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If Ugetsu is what kickstarted the Japanese tradition of Edo Gothic, Kaneto Shindo may have perfected it with Onibaba (1964). It’s a horror film that doesn’t resort to horror, a ghost story with no ghosts. Its evils reside in all too familiar sources: resentment, human nature, and religious hypocrisy, all woven seamlessly through its narrative

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When it comes to the cinematic phenomenon that was pinky violence, one of the key attractions was its stars: Reiko Ike, Miki Sugimoto, Reiko Oshida, and Meiko Kaji to name a few. Rocketing to the heights of pop culture icons, the media couldn’t get enough of these glamorous women, with at least one of them

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