Giovanni Fazio

Giovanni Fazio has been The Japan Times’ resident film crank since 1993. When not at the movies, he is busy recording and playing live with his band Makyo and running the independent electronica label Dakini Records.

For Giovanni Fazio's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Violence speaks louder than words in Ukrainian film 'The Tribe'

Apr 22, 2015

Violence speaks louder than words in Ukrainian film 'The Tribe'

Obscurantism; noun: The practice of being deliberately obscure or vague. If that represents a new genre in art cinema, then Ukrainian director Myroslav Slaboshpytskiy may be its leading proponent. His film “The Tribe,” which garnered some attention at Cannes last year, features deaf actors ...

Thomas Pynchon meets The Dude in 'Inherent Vice'

Apr 15, 2015

Thomas Pynchon meets The Dude in 'Inherent Vice'

“Inherent vice,” a term used in marine insurance law, means anything you can’t avoid: chocolate will melt, glass will shatter and fruit will spoil. For “Inherent Vice” the movie, the thing that can’t be avoided is a comparison to “The Big Lebowski.” Based on ...

The murder ballads of Mexico's brutal drug war

Apr 8, 2015

The murder ballads of Mexico's brutal drug war

A group of Mexican folk musicians take the stage, guitars in hand and tuba at the back. Based on the gaudy outfits they’re dressed in — a mix of mariachi style with Vegas-era Elvis — you might think you know how they’re going to ...

Robert Altman has his fingerprints all over 'Birdman'

Apr 1, 2015

Robert Altman has his fingerprints all over 'Birdman'

In 1992 Robert Altman made “The Player,” a scathing satire on how shallow Hollywood filmmaking had become, and it came damn close to winning him an Oscar for best director. The next year, he made “Short Cuts,” based on the stories of Raymond Carver, ...

Better call Saul to come fix Japan's streaming services

| Apr 1, 2015

Better call Saul to come fix Japan's streaming services

After “Breaking Bad” finished its five-year run in 2013, fans mourned the loss of one of the most gripping, innovative TV series they’d ever seen. When the head writer and executive producer of “Breaking Bad,” Vince Gilligan, announced that there would be a spinoff ...