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Matt Schley
For Matt Schley's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Apr 20, 2023
‘Osaka Vintage Diary’: Secondhand concept offers comfortable charm
Director Takeshi Taniyama builds on the universe of his web series "Tokyo Vintage Diary" by making a film focused on comedian Tetsuya Morita.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Mar 23, 2023
‘Shin Kamen Rider’: Superhero romp is fun but not much else
While Hideaki Anno’s third installment in his “Shin” series lacks substance, it packs in the camp and energy of its 1970s source material.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Mar 16, 2023
‘Gridman Universe’: Multiverse monster mash falls flat
The recent revamp of the 1990s anime character Gridman delivered two entertaining series, but the theatrical follow-up fails to capture the fun and pacing of both shows.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Feb 16, 2023
‘Blue Giant’ soundtrack steals the spotlight
The manga adaptation’s score, composed by jazz pianist Hiromi Uehara, hits all the right notes even if the animation fails to strike a chord.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jan 12, 2023
As anime continues its rise, animators eye opportunities afield in 2023
How big will Japanese animation be in 2023?
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Dec 22, 2022
‘Lonely Castle in the Mirror’: Compelling characters hold the key
The filmu2019s storyline, based on Mizuki Tsujimurau2019s novel of the same name, touches on themes of bullying and social anxiety. The plot will transport you, even if the animation doesnu2019t.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Nov 10, 2022
‘Suzume’: Makoto Shinkai reigns supreme as master of visuals
"Suzume" is the anime directoru2019s most satisfying work yet, with more mature storytelling blended with stunning visuals.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Oct 13, 2022
‘Break of Dawn’: Extraterrestrial adventures lack momentum
Tomoyuki Kurokawau2019s anime about a group of childrenu2019s quest to help an alien return home is a nostalgia trip that takes on weighty themes but slogs toward the end.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Sep 29, 2022
‘Tatami Time Machine Blues’: Kyoto slackers return for summer fun
Anime director Shingo Natsume seamlessly takes up the mantel to revisit the characters from 'The Tatami Galaxy' for new hijinks and a jaunt through time to retrieve a broken remote control.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books
Sep 1, 2022
Step into the animated world of Mamoru Hosoda with 'The Man Who Leapt Through Film'
Charles Solomon's new book offers an inside look at the directoru2019s works such as u201cSummer Warsu201d and u201cBelleu201d via behind-the-scenes anecdotes, production art and exclusive interviews.
Japan Times
COMMUNITY / Issues / THE FOREIGN ELEMENT
Jun 27, 2022
Facing redevelopment, Koenji rises up
Koenji residents claim the government's proposed Auxiliary Road 227 would spell the beginning of the end for their bohemian neighborhood.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jun 9, 2022
'Mobile Suit Gundam: Cucuruz Doan’s Island' returns with an upgraded look
Director Yoshikazu Yasuhiko rights past wrongs with this new interpretation of an infamous episode of the original u201cMobile Suit Gundamu201d series that aired in 1979.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
May 19, 2022
‘Shin Ultraman’: No deeper messages, just a lot of fun
Otaku "dream team" duo Hideaki Anno and Shinji Higuchi join forces once again to revive another special-effects classic thatu2019s fun and camp but lacks some punch.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Apr 7, 2022
‘Odd Taxi: In the Woods’: Tokyo joyride runs out of steam
Baku Kinoshitau2019s theatrical version of an anime series about animal urbanites is leaner than the original but loses much of its charm.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Feb 3, 2022
‘The Deer King’: No crown for Masashi Ando’s directorial debut
Despite an impressive roster of talent working on the film, u201cThe Deer Kingu201d shares too many similarities with Masashi Andou2019s previous work and comes up short in comparison.
Japan Times
PODCAST / deep dive
Jan 26, 2022
From 'Spirited Away' to 'Demon Slayer': The meteoric rise of anime
Since 2002, Japan’s anime industry has doubled in size to become worth over ¥2.4 trillion annually.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Jan 20, 2022
The push to go digital opens new doors for anime
Digitization and remote work will be a mixed blessing for studios and animators in 2022.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film
Dec 17, 2021
Streaming heavyweights made big moves into the world of anime in 2021
Anime became even more accessible worldwide as streaming platforms such as Netflix, Crunchyroll and Disney+ made aggressive moves in 2021.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Oct 23, 2021
Tokyo International Film Festival’s animation section aims beyond hardcore fans
The 34th iteration of TIFF will feature a retrospective, recent and upcoming films, and a look at a live-action tokusatsu special effects franchise.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Sep 16, 2021
'Ghost in the Shell' goes big with Imax release
It has been 26 years since Mamoru Oshiiu2019s futuristic animated thriller u201cGhost in the Shellu201d came into our lives and it still offers new surprises on renewed viewings.

Longform

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