Posts Tagged ‘japanese

03
Sep
16

Hara-kiri (1962)

Hara-kiri is a 1962 samurai film directed by Masaki Kobayashi and starring Tatsuya Nakadai. Generally speaking, I don’t really like Japanese live action films much. I don’t know why I keep watching them. They are mostly garbage. Fortunately, this one was a lot different.

It’s hard to explain what this movie is about without spoiling everything that happens. So, I’ll just give you the gist of it. During the feudal period in Japan, many samurai were left without masters (ronin). Some would go to the homes of lords and ask for a place where they could commit Hara-kiri to die with honor. Sometimes, though, certain ronin would not kill themselves, and refuse to leave the Lord’s home unless they were paid off.

Nakadai shows up at the home of one such lord. He is a ronin and wants to commit Hara-kiri. The lord is away, so Nakadai speaks with his head counselor. The counselor is uncertain about letting Nakadai commit Hara-kiri, because the last ronin who showed up for this very purpose did so as a bluff to get money.

Continue reading ‘Hara-kiri (1962)’

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07
Jun
13

Steins;Gate, Black Rock Shooter TV

Steins;Gate

Why are these stupid assholes in outer space?

Steins;Gate is a completely forgettable anime which, naturally, has almost universal acclaim as a “Masterpiece.” I’m not sure why, because it’s anything but a masterpiece. Piece of trash? Sure. Piece of crap? OK. Piece of cliche story recycled from better ones? Definitely. This show is about time travel. But it’s not really about time travel. It’s about moe bullshit. It likes to showcase cutesy girls and cutesy boys who look, talk, and act like girls in the most annoying fashion possible. The main character (who holds the trademark on the most grating laugh of all time) is constantly travelling back in time in 3-day intervals in order to prevent the death of his friend. In doing so, he fucks up things more and must do even more travelling to right the wrongs he caused. It’s a good concept when executed well. However, in this anime, it serves mostly as a method of showing the same crap over and over again, and letting us listen to girls who talk like cats in maid cafes. I’ll admit there were a couple of riveting episodes (number 13 comes to mind), but there was nowhere near enough material to last 24 episodes. This could have been great as a 2-hour movie, but since this is Japanese anime, they stretched it out to something bloated and not recognizable as good. A single day after I finished this series, I tried to remember how it concluded, but I couldn’t. It was so bland, so flat, that I couldn’t remember what happened one fucking day later. If that’s not a testament to mediocrity, I don’t know what is.

Verdict: Bad

Black Rock Shooter TV

At least she’s a hot alter-ego, right?

I complain about anime being too long so often it has almost become a mantra. In Black Rock Shooter’s case, they didn’t make the show unnecessarily long. At only 8 episodes, it is the perfect length to tell a compelling narrative and then conclude without pointless tangents. Unfortunately, Black Rock Shooter doesn’t have a compelling narrative to tell. It is a travesty, an insult to good story-telling. This is a school-age drama with cute girls homolusting after each other in the way they could only do in a Japanese anime. Simultaneously, we see a fantasy setting with the same girls blasting each other with high-tech weaponry and coming off without a scratch in the way they could only do in a Japanese anime. We learn that these are some kind of mysterious alter-egos of the main characters, living in an alternate dimension or something, and the reason they fight is because the real world people are sad. If their fantasy counterparts die, then the real world people become happy again. Black Rock Shooter kills all her friends in order to make their counterparts happy. Ummm… sure, why not? The grasp this anime has on logic is tenuous at best. The action scenes are cool to watch, but other than that, it has nothing else to offer. Unless, of course, you like shitty acting and shitty storytelling.

Verdict: Shitty

24
May
13

Versus

It’s called Versus, yet there is only one person in the poster. Hmm…

Versus is a bizarre movie. Nonsensical, even. It’s a super low-budget cult film featuring cops, gangsters, shootouts, samurai, zombies, martial arts, karate zombies, sword fighting, and demons. It’s like the director grabbed a list of “cool shit” from the internet, and mixed it all together, hoping it would work. And depending on your point of view, it either totally works, or is a complete fucking mess.

Director Ryuhei Kitamura filmed this in 2000, and it certainly shows. Versus comes from a time when the tone of movies was more focused on wacky hijinks and slapstick humor, which is a big departure from today’s films when everything is a GRRR DARK AND GRITTY exercise in moroseness. I suppose if Versus had played it straight, nothing would work. The whole thing is just too goddamn crazy. The lighter tone is there to remind the viewer to not take it too seriously, otherwise the movie collapses in on itself. The closest thing I can compare this to is Evil Dead II. It’s got plenty of madcap antics and off-beat humor, mixed in with a semi-serious plot. It isn’t really clear whether Kitamura is completely aping Sam Raimi’s directing style, or paying homage to it.

Continue reading ‘Versus’

28
Jan
12

Classically Shitty: Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Hilarious? Were there jokes in this movie? I must have missed them.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s is one of those “classic” movies you are supposed to like because film-fags said so. But it’s awful. I can’t think of a single redeeming aspect of this movie. Sure, it has George Peppard of A-Team fame, but that doesn’t enhance the movie. Maybe if halfway through Mr. T burst through a brick wall, gold chains glittering, a machine gun blasting, bullets ripping Holly Golightly’s flesh into threads, the movie could have been cool. But that didn’t happen, so it’s a piece of shit.

The actual breakfast at Tiffany’s is the first scene of the movie. But it’s so vague you have no idea what the fuck is happening. Holly stands outside the store some time before it opens and eats a pastry. That’s it. That was the breakfast at Tiffany’s. Well, the breakfast outside Tiffany’s at any rate. I guess you could end the movie right there. It would be preferable to the non-stop shitfest that follows. And believe me, it is a shitfest. Breakfast at Tiffany’s is boring, has shitty dialogue, a retarded protagonist, and it’s incredibly racist, too. It really has it all.  Continue reading ‘Classically Shitty: Breakfast at Tiffany’s’

29
Jan
11

Pani Poni Dash – Real-Time Blogging Episode 1

My thoughts on this series.

I’ve read a lot of good things about Pani Poni Dash. Of course, I read a lot of good things about Planetes, and we all know how that turned out. Anyway, I decided to give the show a shot. Now, a famous movie-star/male-model like myself doesn’t have a lot of time to scour the internet for this shit, so I just watched the first copy I could find. It happened to be a streaming version from Funimation’s Youtube channel. The video quality was good, but the audio was dubbed. OK, fine, whatever, that doesn’t bother me. After all, the dubs for plenty of other shows have been good. So I hit play, sat back, and started to watch. If you want to watch and read my comments, click this link to see the episode. Here’s how it went:

00:27 – OK, interesting title screen, seems more subdued than I expected.

00:41 – Let me guess, Planet of the Apes parody?

1:00 – Yep.

1:27 – Why would someone who graduated from MIT go into education? MIT doesn’t even offer degrees in education. Wait, sorry, this is anime so logic doesn’t factor into it.

1:38 – Oh, here is the crazy, super-moe opening, as expected.

2:15 – Kind of a catchy song, but not amazing. At least it’s better than that fucking Lucky Star opening. That thing was an audio holocaust.

3:00 – In the toilet? Where this show belongs, probably.

Continue reading ‘Pani Poni Dash – Real-Time Blogging Episode 1’

03
Dec
10

4 Horsemen of the Film-Making Apocalypse: Part 4 – M. Night Shyamalan

The Four Horsemen of the Film-Making Apocalypse - their true forms revealed.

For a long time I’ve been carefully watching for the end of the world. According to the Bible (the world’s most accurate and consistent book), the world will end in a fiery shit storm, ushered in by the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Well, that time is here, albeit not in a form that anyone expected. In fact, all the pestilence, war, famine, and death are not coming literally, but figuratively in the world of cinema.

Horseman numero quatro is none other than M. Night Shyamalan. Actually, his name is Manoj Nelliyattu Shyamalan. I guess Night sounded cooler than Nelliyattu. Personally, I think he should just go with Shyamy, but that’s just me. Anyway, this guy’s films have grossed over $1 billion worldwide. That would make you think, “Oh wow, he must make some really great movies to bring in that kind of revenue.” Well, if you thought that, you’d be wrong. In fact, I can’t imagine any scenario where this guy’s movies even get financial backing let alone sell tickets. Here’s a sampling of his work:

  1. The Sixth Sense – OK, I actually liked this one, but so did everybody.
  2. Unbreakable – was ripped off to become the now-canceled TV series Heroes.
  3. Signs – It’s only natural for aliens who can be killed by water to invade a planet that is 70% H2O.
  4. The Village – plagiarized from a 1995 young adult book titled Running Out of Time. Well, it was plagiarized and then made much, much worse.
  5. Lady in the Water – Winner of Worst Screenplay, Worst Supporting Actor (Shyamalan), Worst Director, and Worst Picture by the Golden Raspberries in 2006.
  6. The Crappening – … err, sorry, The Happening.
  7. The Last Airbender“THEY STOLE THE TITLE TO OUR AVATAR MOVIE!”

I don’t even know where to begin with ol’ Shyamy. Somehow this guy is able to get huge studio financial backing and land A-list actors time and time again. He’s able to do all this despite having horrible reviews every single time he makes a new movie. In fact, with each subsequent movie, his reviews get worse and worse. Rotten Tomatoes gives his films the following grades: The Sixth Sense 85%, Unbreakable 68%, Signs 74%, The Village 42%, Lady in the Water 24%, The Happening 18%, and The Last Airbender 6%. Let’s use a visual example to further illustrate (image from FilmDrunk). Continue reading ‘4 Horsemen of the Film-Making Apocalypse: Part 4 – M. Night Shyamalan’

06
Mar
09

Japanese R2D2 and C3PO – Fuck Yes!

Verdict: Awesome




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