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Shinya Tsukamoto and the song of 'Silence'

Jan 18, 2017

Shinya Tsukamoto and the song of 'Silence'

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Since his early films, such as “Tetsuo: The Iron Man” (1989) and “Tetsuo II: Body Hammer” (1992), pioneered the cyberpunk genre with a crazed energy and invention, Shinya Tsukamoto has had a reputation as Japanese cinema’s outlaw. While doing the occasional work for hire, ...

'Silence': A test of faith — and of patience

Jan 18, 2017

'Silence': A test of faith — and of patience

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After spending nearly 30 years shepherding his adaptation of Shusaku Endo’s “Silence” to the screen, Martin Scorsese may be starting to feel as forsaken as the book’s Jesuit protagonist, abandoned by an uncommunicative and apparently uncaring God. The movie has been roundly ignored by ...

| Jan 18, 2017

The truth is still out there

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“The truth is out there.” This tagline to the sci-fi TV series “The X-Files” used to give me chills when it was first aired on Fox in 1993. The series touted an intriguing minimalist elegance — from its set designs to FBI agent Dana ...

Cliff Martinez: composing through the chaos

Jan 11, 2017

Cliff Martinez: composing through the chaos

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So much movie music sounds like just that: movie music. It’s rare these days to come across a score with character that really makes you sit up and listen. One musician who consistently manages to pull that off is punk drummer-turned-composer Cliff Martinez, whose ...

'Dirty Grandpa' is quite a stinker

Jan 11, 2017

'Dirty Grandpa' is quite a stinker

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‘Dirty Grandpa.” The un-ironic title is like a spray-painted graffiti sign warning everyone to stay away from this sewage-swilling clogged cesspit masquerading as a movie. Woe betide anyone who catches this on an airplane, they may wind up using all the airsick bags in ...

'Nerve': For the watchers

Jan 4, 2017

'Nerve': For the watchers

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Japanese millennials aren’t interested in cars, sex or marriage according to economists and business magazines such as Toyo Keizai. Yawn — so, what else is new? Every night I go to sleep hoping to wake up to a world where people go on proper ...

'Our Meal for Tomorrow': Changing roles in romantic drama

Jan 4, 2017

'Our Meal for Tomorrow': Changing roles in romantic drama

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Gender-bending comedy certainly exists in Japanese films, though it may not be mainstream. In Yosuke Fujita’s “Fuku-chan of FukuFuku Flats” (“Fukufukuso no Fukuchan,” 2014), popular female TV comedian Miyuki Oshima starred as a male house painter who becomes allergic to the opposite sex after ...