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James Hadfield

For James Hadfield's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

'Crazy Thunder Road' is still a mad, but great film

| Dec 7, 2016

'Crazy Thunder Road' is still a mad, but great film

Sogo Ishii — or Gakuryu Ishii, as he now prefers to be known — was just 23 when he released “Crazy Thunder Road,” perhaps one of the greatest films to emerge from Japan’s punk era (an honor it shares with the director’s 1982 follow-up, ...

'Hitchcock/Truffaut': An auteur meets his (movie) maker

Dec 7, 2016

'Hitchcock/Truffaut': An auteur meets his (movie) maker

The French got Alfred Hitchcock well before the Americans did. In the 1950s, when the tubby director’s Hollywood overlords still regarded him as a producer of light entertainment — the Robert Zemeckis of his day, perhaps — the writers at France’s Cahiers du Cinema ...

'Embrace of the Serpent': Amid the poisons of colonization

Nov 2, 2016

'Embrace of the Serpent': Amid the poisons of colonization

While Leonardo DiCaprio’s masochistic lead performance garnered greater acclaim, perhaps the most striking aspect of “The Revenant” was the diligence it showed in telling the Native American side of the story. Yet for all the scenes of authentic Arikara dialogue, the indigenous characters in ...

TIFF takes viewers beyond the comfort zone

Oct 19, 2016

TIFF takes viewers beyond the comfort zone

While sifting through the movies submitted for this year’s Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF), competition programming director Yoshihiko Yatabe says he noticed a recurring theme. “I was struck by the number of films involving immigrants and refugees,” he says. “It’s become such a big ...

Shugo Tokumaru gets his friends involved on new album 'Toss'

Oct 13, 2016

Shugo Tokumaru gets his friends involved on new album 'Toss'

A couple of months ago, Shugo Tokumaru released a video on YouTube that showed him preparing an elaborate meal from an unlikely set of ingredients. In it, he took a selection of toy instruments — a ukulele, a recorder, some castanets, a party horn ...

'Jason Bourne': The invincible franchise

Oct 12, 2016

'Jason Bourne': The invincible franchise

It’s the Bourne revival: Matt Damon is Bourne again. After an unsuccessful attempt to transfer the franchise to Jeremy Renner in 2012’s “The Bourne Legacy,” Damon has returned to his most iconic role as the brainwashed CIA super-soldier. He’s the real deal, the Sean ...

A hive of sonic activity stirs on Kafka's Ibiki release

Oct 9, 2016

A hive of sonic activity stirs on Kafka's Ibiki release

There’s something curious happening on “Nemutte,” the sophomore album by Tokyo-based instrumental trio Kafka’s Ibiki. When it performs live, the group specializes in long, patiently evolving improvisations that occupy a liminal zone between jazz, ambient, minimalism and experimental rock. One such performance, at SuperDeluxe ...