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Kaori Shoji

Kaori Shoji writes about movies and movie-makers for the Film Page, plus takes a turn at the Bilingual Column. Biggest mistake of her career: taking the very dignified Nagisa Oshima to McDonald’s for an iced coffee.

For Kaori Shoji's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

The Scottish song heard around the world

Jul 23, 2014

The Scottish song heard around the world

“Sunshine on Leith” was a much-loved stage musical, featuring the songs of Scottish band The Proclaimers, that ran from 2007 to 2013. But when Dexter Fletcher signed on to direct the film adaptation of the musical, he had never seen it. “People kept asking ...

Sunshine on Leith

Jul 23, 2014

Sunshine on Leith

Who wouldn’t want a man that walks 500 miles (and 500 more) just to be with you? In 1988 the Scottish band The Proclaimers released their album “Sunshine on Leith” featuring the song “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles),” which had all the buoyant freshness ...

Attila Marcel

Jul 23, 2014

Attila Marcel

French animation director Sylvain Chomet debuted in 2003 with “The Triplets of Belleville,” a five-course meal of a film, rich with a surreal visual style and Gallic wit, and followed it up with “The Illusionist,” a gorgeous adaptation of a Jacques Tati film. Now ...

Frozen (Ana to Yuki no Jo)

Jul 23, 2014

Frozen (Ana to Yuki no Jo)

Directors: Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee Language: English, Icelandic If you’re a parent who took your kid to see “Frozen” about 15 times, here’s a chance to see it again — at home! This film shows Disney in a somewhat subversive mood. Princess Anna seeks ...

Escape From Tomorrow

Jul 16, 2014

Escape From Tomorrow

An audacious kick-in-the-ribs at the Disney kingdom, “Escape From Tomorrow” is cool, cool stuff — albeit in a clunky and kitsch Ed Wood kind of way. Director Randy Moore made his film guerilla style by taking a small camera and stealth sound-recording equipment into ...

Les Reines du Ring

Jul 16, 2014

Les Reines du Ring

French mothers have a reputation for being smoking, skinny bundles of alluring discontent, decked out in black dresses and heels. But now comes “Les Reines du Ring” (“Wrestling Queens”) — a delightful tale about a French mother who only wants her teenage son’s approval ...

Thor: The Dark World

Jul 16, 2014

Thor: The Dark World

Director: Alan Taylor Language: English Space-hottie Thor (Chris Hemsworth) drops in to see how his Earthling girlfriend, Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), is doing and winds up enmeshed in battle to protect her from dark elves who have been reactivated again, after having been dormant ...

In Japan, the 'collapse of the family' is old news

Jul 14, 2014

In Japan, the 'collapse of the family' is old news

One of the things the Japanese media love to discuss is kazoku no hōkai (家族の崩壊, collapse of the family) — an evergreen topic that’s been around since the late 1960s, a time when most urban Japanese families could first afford a television. Academics and ...

'Maleficent'

Jul 10, 2014

'Maleficent'

“Maleficent” takes you on a ride into a non-kiddie realm of betrayal, vengeance and mother-daughter brouhaha. Is that a good thing for a Disney audience? On the other hand, look at “Frozen,” which dealt with some sibling rivalry and female empowerment issues. That worked, ...

Cinema's silent moment with God

Jul 9, 2014

Cinema's silent moment with God

If one word could describe “Into Great Silence,” what would that be? The film’s creator Philip Groning doesn’t hesitate when he says, “Monastery.” Almost a decade years after its European release, “Into Great Silence” will finally open in Japan this month. In an interview ...