Pale Moon

Selected to represent Japan in the 27th Tokyo International Film Festival competition section, Pale Moon comes from award winning commercial director Daihachi Yoshida, who makes a strategic retreat from his usual visual flair to deliver a wrenching character study of a Japanese woman seeking significance […]

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Trailer Break: Avengers Age of Ultron

After an exhausting few weeks of announcements and updates on the film franchise machines of Marvel and DC, a massive geek bomb just exploded online with the Avengers Age of Ultron trailer being leaked. And while Marvel could have run around yelling cease and desist, a big […]

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To Be Takei

There is a moment in Jennifer M. Kroot’s documentary To Be Takei, where her film’s subject, Star Trek alum, stage and screen actor and social activist George Takei has a moment of genuine introspection, pronouncing ‘I, in my own life, have been the beneficiary of an […]

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Hosoda’s Pack

With a history that can be traced to the 12th century, Japanese cartoons, or manga as they are commonly referred to in the archipelago, have always been enjoyed en-mass as both divisive social commentary and titillating escapism. And while art historians and contemporary pop-culturists argue […]

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The Wind Rises

While Hayao Miyazaki’s (Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away) latest endeavour boasts all the familiar artistic qualities of his previous films, The Wind Rises is a very different and contentious beast on which the writer/director has chosen to rest his pen. Abandoning the high fantasy that usually […]

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A Conversation with Kaoru Yachigusa

It’s difficult to fathom the impact that the ever elegant and beautiful Kaoru Yachigusa has had on Japan’s entertainment landscape. Between 1947 and 1957 she honed her trade as an entertainer with the Takarazuka Revue, all all-female musical theatre troupe renowned for their lavish Broadway-style […]

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A Conversation with Yoshihiro Fukugawa

On the surface, biopics about elderly poets may not seem like compelling viewing. Yoshihiro Fukugawa, however, begs to differ, having recently finished his new film Don’t Lose Heart, which brings the inspirational true story of Toyo Shibata, one of Japan’s best known poets, to the […]

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A Conversation with Edgar Wright

“I literally shot one of the Klingons being shot. So, you know, it’s on screen for like two seconds.” After the smash out performance of Shaun of the Dead and Scott Pilgrim V The World, Edgar Wright puts aside Marvel’s mighty Ant-Man to helm the final […]

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A Conversation With Simon Pegg

“Not that we’ve ever fought zombies… but they grow out of our own parochial experiences in the UK, and that’s something that really defines all 3 films.” After trekking across the universe for director J.J. Abrams and globe trotting as part of the Mission: Impossible team, […]

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A Conversation with Nick Frost

“I don’t generally indulge myself in terms of looking back and thinking ‘Gee wiz you’ve done fucking great!’” English thespian, foodie and all round nice guy Nick Frost has become a stalwart of the English cinema scene. His long time partnership with the irrepressible Simon […]

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A Conversation with Miwa Nishikawa

“I think that women who, in the absence of role models, lose their way and drown in this freedom…” Not unlike most film cultures across the globe, Japan’s cinematic history has borne a significant disadvantage with the absence of a distinct female voice to influence […]

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Painted Skin: Resurrection 3D

If you were fortunate enough to have caught director Wuershan’s last big screen foray The Butcher, The Chef & The Swordsman, then you won’t be overly surprised at the scale of grandeur and ambition which infuses Painted Skin: Resurrection. In fact, armed with a degree […]

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There & Back Again

With the imminent release of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey in cinemas, I recently had the pleasure of chatting with one of the films writers and producers; the charming, lovely and always brilliant Philippa Boyens. As far back as 1957 numerous producers, including the late […]

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A Conversation with Seth Macfarlane

“Motion Capture technology was something that had been more or less perfected, but yet no one had really used it in a comic format before” With the continuing success of his animated TV series Family Guy, American Dad and The Cleveland Show, Seth MacFarlane’s star […]

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A Conversation with Alan Dean Foster

“The fact that Dr. Who is still around is more than a bit mind-boggling.” As the two worlds of interactive content and traditional publishing undergo their inevitable transition into an indistinguishable sole entity, thanks in part to recent release of iTunesU and its nefarious cousin iBooks Author, […]

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A Chat with Makoto Shinkai

“… One of my motives for making this film was a desire to spin my own ending to that book.” Animation, like any film genre, maintains a certain hierarchy of talent based on admiration, reputation and experience. And perhaps more than any other country, this […]

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A Conversation with Alex Borstein

“That’s what’s great about comedy, it’s a leveller, it’s an equal opportunity offender.” Love it or hate it, the animated sitcom Family Guy has achieved a rare level of success having burrowed its way into the global zeitgeist where it has proceeded to lay a […]

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Midori-Ko

This ain’t no Totoro. Tokyo based experimental animator, renowned independent artist and respected academic Keita Kurosaka has spent the past decade single handedly and methodically hand drawing his most ambitious animated work to date, the engrossing dark fable Midori Ko. But for those expecting just […]

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Kurosaka and His Dark Design

After the massive success of last years Japanese programming block, the 2011 Gold Coast Film Festival is reaching further and deeper into the archipelago’s cinematic offering with its freshly branded Cool Japan Gold Coast program. And Festival organisers have managed to secure some impressive and […]

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Super Heroes At Home

Big screen movie franchises such as X-Men, Spider-Man and The Dark Knight might be pulling all the media attention, but there’s a whole other world of comic book related movies out there, and surprisingly enough they’re going straight-to-DVD… but don’t fret, its not as bad as […]

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Benshi at the Playhouse

The art of storytelling, of crafting a living archive of a cultures history, its folklore and humanity, remains an integral part of Japanese culture with its writers, poets, calligraphers, filmmakers and artisans held in deep reverence for their dedication in preserving the veracity of the […]

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A Conversation with Bob Gale

“Were not going to reboot or remake the films with another cast, we are not going to turn them into 3D.” 1985 is often remembered for its notorious bubble-gum pop music, soul destroying fashion and obscene hair styling, but for film fans that particular twelve month block […]

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Dark Days

With the imminent release of Let Me In, the American adaptation of the acclaimed supernatural Swedish thriller Let The Right One In, I sat down for a conversation with director Matt Reeves to discuss the ‘Difficult Second Album Syndrome’ and why the 80’s are synonymous with Horror […]

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Afro Samurai

Based on the original manga of Takashi Okazaki and given the anime treatment by Japan’s award winning Studio Gonzo, Afro Samurai turns your traditional anime expectations on their head to deliver a five part series chock full of brooding complex characters, truly impressive fights sequences […]

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Detroit Metal City

In the realm of Japanese publishing there are some strange, curious and profoundly entertaining magazines to be found, including a peculiar little pulp volume called Young Animal (ヤングアニマル Yangu Animaru). And while the magazine assuredly blurs the lines of good taste, it was in 2005 […]

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A Conversation with Karen Gillan

“Strangely it’s all become fairly normal, that’s the weird thing. Now I can just be really scared of tennis balls.” There is a weird fanaticism that surrounds Doctor Who and within its ranks are some of the most heated passions and secular dedication that you’re […]

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A Conversation with Peter Jackson

“I think it’s a hopeless exercise to cater to fans of the book, simply because at the end of the day, they aren’t a common voice.” Since the mammoth directorial undertaking and subsequent release of his King Kong remake of in 2005, kiwi filmmaker Peter […]

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A Conversation with Neill Blomkamp

“I was genetically created to do that film, I really was. And it would have been an awesome film.” While the name Neill Blomkamp may not garner much recognition at the moment, the short films and commercial work of this South African raised director has teased […]

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Eureka Seven

The latest anime series to utilize the ‘boy and his mecha’ formula, Eureka Seven deftly manages to shift its core focus away from the impressive hardware designs and into a more personal story; primarily through unraveling the various neurotic layers of its main protagonist, Renton, […]

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