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James Hadfield

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

Sukiyaki Meets the World music festival thinks global and acts local

Aug 21, 2016

Sukiyaki Meets the World music festival thinks global and acts local

In his classic polemic against modern Japan, “Dogs and Demons,” Alex Kerr described how a system of government loans and subsidies in the 1980s spurred a nationwide outbreak of grandiose construction projects. Today, the Japanese countryside is littered with oversized, underused cultural centers, many ...

Superhero films need to reach beyond the geeks

Aug 17, 2016

Superhero films need to reach beyond the geeks

Where superhero movies are concerned, you should never trust a critic. When David Ayer’s “Suicide Squad” opened to a barrage of negative press in the U.S. earlier this month, some fans responded by lashing out at film journalists online. One even launched a petition ...

'Song of the Sea': Seals, fairies and ancient folk songs

Aug 17, 2016

'Song of the Sea': Seals, fairies and ancient folk songs

When Isao Takahata’s “The Tale of Princess Kaguya” lost out to “Big Hero 6” in the competition for Best Animated Feature at the Academy Awards last year, it was a reminder of how thoroughly 3-D computer animation has eclipsed more traditional techniques. In the ...

'The Jungle Book': Darker yet infinitely more beautiful

Aug 10, 2016

'The Jungle Book': Darker yet infinitely more beautiful

After decades spent wrestling with the logistics of international shoots, Hollywood seems to be coming full circle. It’s like the early days of cinema again, when exotic locales were evoked within the confines of a movie studio, though today’s filmmakers aren’t so reliant on ...

Retreat from the heat to the cinema this summer

Jun 30, 2016

Retreat from the heat to the cinema this summer

The summer blockbuster is dead — or at least, it has ceased to exist as a distinct entity. Four decades after “Jaws” set the template for mass-market Hollywood spectacle, the so-called event movie has expanded its turf so dramatically that July and August, once ...