The classic Hollywood screwball comedy, which hit its peak in the 1930s and ’40s, has had a lasting influence, though the genre itself petered out long ago.

In Japan, scriptwriter and director Koki Mitani has incorporated screwball elements into his hit comedies, beginning with his 1997 directorial debut, “Welcome Back, Mr. McDonald,” with its fast talk, black humor and hairpin plot turns.

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