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 Giovanni Fazio

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Giovanni Fazio
Giovanni Fazio has been The Japan Times' resident film crank since 1993. When not at the movies, he is busy recording and playing live with his band Makyo and running the independent electronica label Dakini Records.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jul 16, 2014
Orgasm Inc.
Director: Liz Canner
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jul 9, 2014
'The Dance of Reality'
Chilean director Alejandro Jodorowsky blew people's minds with two of the hippie era's most esoteric movies: "El Topo" (1970) and "The Holy Mountain" (1973). They were midnight-movie megahits, praised to the heavens by the likes of John Lennon and Yoko Ono, and it seemed like Jodorowsky was destined...
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jul 9, 2014
'Fading Gigolo'
John Turturro is a fine actor, and can certainly do comedy when he wants to — he stole the show with the briefest of cameos in "The Big Lebowski" (1998) — so it's hard to figure out what went wrong with "Fading Gigolo," which he also directed.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jul 9, 2014
Before Midnight
Director: Richard Linklater
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jul 2, 2014
Babylon still trembles at Jamaica's cult classic
Flashback: It's midnight at the Orson Welles Cinema, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1980. Perry Henzell's breakthrough Jamaican film "The Harder They Come" has been playing here every weekend for nearly a decade now, but tonight it's still a full house. As the lights go down, the audience sparks up, and within...
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jul 2, 2014
'Children of the Revolution'
When asked by a comrade why the press had such intense fear and loathing of the Red Army Faction's female members, Ulrike Meinhof replied, "Women are at the heart of human reproduction. Women are supposed to be passive, obedient, available and conciliatory. Women who break away, refuse to accept all...
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jul 2, 2014
'The Missing Picture' (Kieta E: Khmer Rouge no Shinjitsu)
Cambodian director Rithy Panh has made a career out of documenting the brutal rule of Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge regime, which murdered something like 2 million of its own people between 1975 and 1979. With good reason: His own family was lost to the genocide.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jul 2, 2014
'American Hustle'
Director: David O. Russell
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 26, 2014
'Transcendence'
Has the digital backlash begun? Spike Jonze's "Her" and Wally Pfister's "Transcendence" both open this weekend, and while they're very different films — one with a nerdy guy falling in love with his sultry-voiced operating system, the other a mind-bending thriller about uploading human consciousness...
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 26, 2014
'Parkland'
Oliver Stone threw just about every conspiracy theory regarding the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy into his 1991 film "JFK." Peter Landesman's "Parkland," on the other hand, includes none of them. Based on journalist (and former Manson Family prosecutor) Vincent Bugliosi's eyewitness...
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 26, 2014
'The East'
Director: Zal Batmanglij
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 19, 2014
Paul Haggis: Spinning reality into a web of fiction
"Today, too often, we've gotten used to telling the audience things in bold, in all-caps or underlined, and solving everything for everybody." So says Paul Haggis, the screenwriter and director who won Oscars back-to-back with "Million Dollar Baby" in 2004 and "Crash" in 2005. His new film, "Third Person,"...
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 19, 2014
'Third Person'
We meet Liam Neeson and Olivia Wilde — the two stars of "Third Person" — inside an upscale hotel in Paris.She knocks on the door to his room, and he seems pleased to see her...Or is he? They tease each other, blowing hot and cold, crackling with electricity, until she eventually joins him in bed....
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 19, 2014
'300: Rise of an Empire'
This may be little more than trashy B-movie material, but at least it's not the hideous war-on-terror propaganda film that the first "300" was, which had Spartans — warriors from a fascist state built on the back of mass slavery — yammering on about "freedom" and "democracy" and slaughtering...
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 19, 2014
Amateur (Ai Amateur)
Director: Various
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 12, 2014
The most important sci-fi film never made
Cinema is strewn with the ghosts of films unmade — projects that spent years in development, teetering on the brink of being greenlit before disappearing without a trace. And one such project became the stuff of legend: cult director Alejandro Jodorowsky's planned adaptation of Frank Herbert's...
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 12, 2014
'Noah'
Darren Aronofsky has been such a challenging, inventive filmmaker for so long that when I saw the trailers for "Noah," I cringed. It looked like every other formulaic summer blockbuster rather than a film from the guy who brought us sentient refrigerators in "Requiem for a Dream" and paranoia-induced...
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 12, 2014
'Jodorowsky's Dune'
Frank Pavich's documentary, "Jodorowsky's Dune," explores director Alejandro Jodorowsky's legendary attempt to adapt Frank Herbert's classic sci-fi novel "Dune" to the big screen — one of cinema's great what-ifs. The documentary covers the two years from the project's inception to 1975, when it...
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 12, 2014
'Virginia'
Director: Dustin Lance Black
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 5, 2014
'The Grand Budapest Hotel'
Wes Anderson has always been a bit of a mystery to me. His films are remarkably consistent in their approach and stylistic idiosyncrasies, yet they seem equally capable of leaving me rapturous ("Moonrise Kingdom") or cold ("The Darjeeling Limited"). I'm not alone here: Check out any fan's list of Anderson...

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