Meta

RSS

Mark's RSS feed

Mark Schilling

For Mark Schilling's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

'Thermae Romae II'

Apr 17, 2014

'Thermae Romae II'

Hideki Takeuchi’s “Thermae Romae” — literally “Roman Bath” — was 2012′s surprise box office smash in Japan, earning nearly ¥6 billion, the second-highest that year. Based on Mari Yamazaki’s hit manga, the film was about a bathhouse architect named Lucius (Hiroshi Abe) in ancient ...

'Hidamari No Kanojo' (Girl in the Sunny Place)

Apr 17, 2014

'Hidamari No Kanojo' (Girl in the Sunny Place)

Director: Takahiro Miki Language: Japanese (subtitled in English) In Takahiro Miki’s romantic drama, a shy salesman (Jun Matsumoto) reconnects with a former junior high classmate (Juri Ueno) who is now a successful businesswoman. He falls for her, but she has a secret that turns ...

'Crows Explode'

Apr 10, 2014

'Crows Explode'

In Japanese films, high-school classrooms are often portrayed as rowdy environments where kids can talk, tease, flirt and fight, without any visible adult supervision. But when the teacher walks through the door the fun — if that’s what it is — usually ends. There ...

'Kirishima, Bukatsu Yamerutteyo' (The Kirishima Thing)

Apr 10, 2014

'Kirishima, Bukatsu Yamerutteyo' (The Kirishima Thing)

Director: Daihachi Yoshida Language: Japanese (subtitled in English) Daihachi Yoshida’s 2012 high-school drama focuses on those impacted by the resignation of star-player Kirishima from the volleyball team, including an enraged best friend (Masahiro Higashide) and a young movie director (Ryunosuke Kamiki). Made with a ...

Cycling Sayama

Apr 5, 2014

Cycling Sayama

A forested area bordering western Tokyo and Saitama Prefecture offers day-trippers a chance to experience the great outdoors on two wheels.

'Sanbun no Ichi (One Third)'

Apr 3, 2014

'Sanbun no Ichi (One Third)'

Caper movies have their conventions, one being that the crook anti-heroes may get to run their fingers through their loot, but they hardly ever get to keep it. The prototype is Stanley Kubrick’s “The Killing” (1956), in which elaborate planning and clockwork execution pay ...

'Nazotoki wa Dinner no Ato de (The After-Dinner Mysteries)'

Apr 3, 2014

'Nazotoki wa Dinner no Ato de (The After-Dinner Mysteries)'

Director: Hijikata Masato, Ishikawa Junichi Language: Japanese (subtitled in English) Hijikata Masato’s murder mystery, set on a cruise ship bound for Singapore, is based on a popular TV series about a ditzy heiress-turned-detective (Keiko Kitagawa) and her smooth, know-it-all butler (Sho Sakurai). Cartoonish murder ...

Trial by media, conviction by word of mouth

Mar 27, 2014

Trial by media, conviction by word of mouth

Yoshihiro Nakamura makes movies that puzzle, surprise and illuminate their themes both cleverly and literally (the fireworks of “Golden Slumber,” the comet of “Fish Story”). Everyone’s heard of the “butterfly effect” — how a small action in one place (a butterfly flapping its wings ...

'Shirayuki Hime Satsujin Jiken (The Snow White Murder Case)'

Mar 27, 2014

'Shirayuki Hime Satsujin Jiken (The Snow White Murder Case)'

The Japanese are big fans of mysteries of the puzzle-plot sort, with murders committed in the kinds of odd and ingenious ways that real killers seldom use. The detective hero not only cracks the case, but delivers a detailed postmortem to an appreciative audience, ...

'Kashikoi Inu wa Hoezu ni Warau (Shady)'

Mar 27, 2014

'Kashikoi Inu wa Hoezu ni Warau (Shady)'

Director: Ryohei Watanabe Language: Japanese (subtitled in English) Ryohei Watanabe’s debut feature about two unpopular high school girls who become fast friends won prizes at home and was acclaimed at Britain’s Raindance Film Festival. The subbed DVD release there by Third Window Films of ...