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THE FILMS OF KIYOSHI KUROSAWA: Master of Fear, by Jerry White. Berkeley, CA: Stonebridge Press, 2007, $19.95 (paper)

Kiyoshi Kurosawa has been an international cult favorite since the release of “Cure,” his breakthrough film, in 1997. Telling the strange tale of a blanked-out young man who hypnotizes his victims into killing themselves, “Cure” was utterly unlike anything coming out of Hollywood in its indirection, ambiguity and scares that seemed to ooze up from the collective unconscious rather than spring from behind a door. It also labeled Kurosawa as a J-Horror director, a label that Jerry White, in his pioneering critical study “The Films of Kiyoshi Kurosawa: Master of Fear,” admits does not quite fit: “His films,” writes White, “are often too complex for the cult fan, yet too mired in genre convention for art-house fans.”

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