Tag - wide-angle

 
 

WIDE ANGLE

Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Apr 20, 2016
'Here's Harold' sends Ikea flat-packing
Call me a crank, but I'm not a fan of Ikea — not even of its famed cafeteria. So when I heard "Here is Harold" was a "Down-with-Ikea!" movie, I wanted to fly straight to Norway and shake the director Gunnar Vikene's hand. Vikene is part of a growing movement of Scandinavian filmmakers who like to combine poignancy with Nordic humor (look no further than director Bent Hamer). Yes, humor is a big thing in Norway — when you have to pay as much as $20 for a head of lettuce, laughing about it is often the only thing that will get you through the day.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Apr 13, 2016
Apocalypse Now: tighter, cleaner and just as disturbing
Perhaps it's no surprise that as Donald Trump incites campaign rallies with his promise to torture more bad guys, along comes Col. Kurtz to remind us of "the horror, the horror" — his radical notion that the only way to defeat savagery is by becoming a savage.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Mar 30, 2016
Documentary delves into the darker side of Kawasaki
Kawasaki in Kanagawa Prefecture is famed for three things: yakiniku barbecue restaurants, sex shops and a high crime rate. Though parts of the city are middle class, a grittier and lower-income image of Kawasaki has persisted through the years.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Mar 23, 2016
Tokyo cafe to screen controversial short films by Iranian director Keywan Karimi
Iranian filmmaker Keywan Karimi has been sentenced to one year in prison and 223 lashes for making "Writing on the City," a movie authorities consider anti-government propaganda and an insult to the religion of Islam. His subject: The history of Tehran from the 1979 Revolution to the present, as shown through murals and graffiti that criticize the regime and express hopes for freedom.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Mar 16, 2016
What Japan can learn from French blockbuster 'Serial (Bad) Weddings'
Love between different races is one thing, and then there's marriage. Guess which is more complicated.
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Mar 9, 2016
'Fukushima: A Nuclear Story' stands out among 3/11 documentaries
The Fukushima nuclear plant disaster has been examined in hundreds of documentaries to date, counting all media, nationalities and languages. But "Fukushima: A Nuclear Story" stands out for one simple, powerful reason: Its central figure, Italian journalist Pio d'Emilia, was among the first foreign reporters allowed on the scene after the earthquake and tsunami crippled the plant.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Mar 2, 2016
The drama of work: Exploring Japan's 'oshigoto' genre
There's a genre in Japanese fiction called oshigoto (work). It has been around for a while, but after the disasters of March 11, 2011, it really took off — perhaps we realized that the only thing going for us was a willingness to work our backsides off.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Feb 17, 2016
Tokyo festival for 'alternative visions' is loaded with art films
The Yebisu International Festival for Art & Alternative Visions 2016 is on until Feb. 20 and is taking place in one of Tokyo's most highfalutin chunks of real estate: the area around Yebisu Garden Place in the Ebisu neighborhood.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Feb 17, 2016
'Unbroken' opens in Tokyo with few complaints
In a small victory for freedom of speech, independent distributor Bitters End opened Angelina Jolie's controversial World War II prison camp movie "Unbroken" at Shibuya's Theatre Image Forum, and in the end there were no fascist sound trucks or other harassment — just a couple of aggro emails. Yet the fact remains that no major distributor was willing to touch the film, due to the fact that it had been smeared as "anti-Japanese" prior to even being released, reflecting the climate of self-censorship in Japan these days.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Feb 10, 2016
The 11th edition of the Osaka Asian Film Festival
Tokyo tends to suck up all the media oxygen when it comes to film festivals and events in this country, but there's plenty going on beyond the capital's borders, as evidenced by the Osaka Asian Film Festival. The 11th edition of the festival, unspooling March 4-13 at venues in Osaka, will present a wide-ranging program of new and classic Asian films and new Japanese titles with a populist slant.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Feb 3, 2016
Could an aging population save Japan's independent cinemas?
Only a few years ago, movie industry pundits sighed and said that cinema was dead (again), and that streaming networks would soon sweep that corpse aside.
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Jan 27, 2016
Gangster 'Whitey' Bulger has a lot to say about institutional corruption
"Black Mass" does a decent job of portraying the rise and fall of Boston crime boss James "Whitey" Bulger and how he wound up as an FBI informant, but there's far more to the story. Director Joe Berlinger's 2014 documentary "Whitey: United States of America vs. James J. Bulger" — available online at Amazon and Netflix — raises a troubling and unresolved question: What if Bulger wasn't an informant? As one attorney suggests, "our federal government is more corrupt than anyone ever imagined."
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Jan 20, 2016
Two greats have passed away, so who's left to carry the burden of cinematography?
A golden age of Hollywood cinematography is slowly drawing to a close. Haskell Wexler, the director of photography who worked with everyone that mattered in the 1970s — Hal Ashby, Francis Ford Coppola, Terence Malick, Milos Forman, Mike Nichols — passed away on Dec. 27. Vilmos Zsigmond, an equally important cinematographer who shot "The Deer Hunter," "Deliverance," "The Long Goodbye" and a bunch of Woody Allen's films shuttered his lens a few days later on Jan. 1. Vittorio Storaro ("Apocalypse Now," "The Last Emperor") is arguably the last man standing from that generation of giants. Their legacy lay in the notion that the cameraman was an artist, not just a craftsman — an idea that sometimes even got them fired.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Jan 13, 2016
A golden year for aging stars in film
A while back we heard that 50 is the new 30, but Hollywood has gone beyond that, as a whole new reserve corps of talent is emerging to tell us that 70 is the new 35, and that at 60 you're a mere baby.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Jan 8, 2016
'The Forest' can't see the woods for the props
Mount Fuji now has worldwide fame thanks to its World Heritage status, but less-known is the fact that some of the surrounding area — specifically the Aokigahara Jukai forest — is a suicide hot spot. This is common knowledge among Japanese, especially those who live in the Kanto area, but who would have thought Aokigahara would also gain international attention? Well, it's happening thanks to an indie horror movie called "The Forest," which is set for a Jan. 8 opening in the United States.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Jan 6, 2016
How 'Yo-Kai Watch' beat 'Star Wars' at the box office in Japan
As 2015 came to a close, "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" was the movie on everyone's lips, with fans dressed up in costumes and camping out to buy tickets, and a social media presence bigger than the Jabba the Hutt. Yet, despite breaking all box-office records on its opening weekend in the United States, the new "Star Wars" ranked only No. 2 in Japan (with more than 800,000 viewers), beaten to the top spot by "Yo-Kai Watch the Movie 2: King Enma and the 5 Stories, Nyan!," which had almost 1 million viewers. A week later, this cheap and chirpy big-screen version of a Japanese kids cartoon derived from a Nintendo game kicked Jedi butt again.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Dec 16, 2015
Moviegoers suffering from motion sickness not enamored with CGI effects
Once upon a time, cinemas screening "The Exorcist" handed out barf bags to their patrons as a cheap gimmick. (The movie was so "sick" it would make you sick.)
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Dec 9, 2015
Filmmakers explore Japan's infamous doomsday cult, Aum Shinrikyo, with mixed results
Today the saga of Aum Shinrikyo — a doomsday cult that killed 13 Tokyo commuters and poisoned many others with sarin gas in 1995 — seems like something out of a bad manga. What could have possessed so many well-educated middle-class people, to follow Shoko Asahara, a deranged guru who taught a mishmash of Buddhism and nonsense?
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Dec 2, 2015
Michael Pollan's bestselling book 'In Defense of Food' to be adapted into documentary film
Now that the World Health Organization has decreed that processed meats are potentially hazardous, and a chain of hotels in Sweden has actually banned bacon, sausages and palm oil products from its breakfast menus, food is increasingly becoming a hot topic, both in real life and in the movies.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Film / Wide Angle
Nov 25, 2015
Welsh filmmaker John Williams has made it in Japan against all odds
It's not easy for anyone to make indie films in Japan. Audiences, venues and funds are all shrinking. And if you are not Japanese, you face additional barriers of language, culture and credibility. Even if your name is the only foreign one on the credits, many will consider your film not "really" Japanese, including those with the power to decide if it will live or die in the theaters or on the festival circuit.

Longform

Historically, kabuki was considered the entertainment of the merchant and peasant classes, a far cry from how it is regarded today.
For Japan's oldest kabuki theater, the show must go on