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4 items from 2017

Netflix’s Death Note Adaptation May Take Place In America, But Its Core Remains The Same

5 July 2017 7:27 AM, PDT | We Got This Covered | See recent We Got This Covered news »

Aside from Ryuk, the iconic Shinigami brought to life with great menace by the equally great Willem Dafoe, Netflix and writer-director Adam Wingard have overhauled Death Note to such an extent that the story, one initially conceived by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata all the way back in 2003, has been relocated to Seattle, Washington.

Not only that, but Light Yagami, the student who first encounters the all-powerful Death Note and begins targeting Tokyo’s criminal underbelly, now goes by the name of Light Turner (Aka Kira), and will be played by Nat Wolff (The Fault in Our Stars). And therein lies the source of controversy.

Similar to Ghost in the Shell, Iron Fist, and even Matt Damon’s place in The Great Wall, thrusting a white, American actor into the midst of a Japanese story has irked longtime fans of the Death Note series, but during a recent interview with IGN, »

- Michael Briers

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The 25 Best Action Movies of the 21st Century, From ‘The Dark Knight’ to ‘Kill Bill’

16 June 2017 7:00 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Many films have great action, but that doesn’t necessarily make them action movies. In putting together this list, we leaned toward a more exclusive model that didn’t include films with their feet firmly planted in the drama or crime-thriller genres, as the idea of comparing “Zero Dark Thirty” to “Fast and the Furious” seemed like a futile exercise. Needless to say, there are a few movies that professed action movie fans may consider to be worthy of consideration for any survey of the best action movies, but they didn’t make the cut for our overview of the finest examples since 2000.

The following films have been excluded from this list not because of quality, but rather a desire to compare apples to apples: “Collateral,” “Gravity,” “The Revenant,” “Old Boy (2003),” and “Sicario.” Additionally, the following action films were disqualified purely based on the fact they appeared on our sci-fi »

- Chris O'Falt, Graham Winfrey and Kate Erbland

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'Ghost in the Shell' Review: Scarlett Johansson's Anime Reboot Is Mostly Style Over Substance

31 March 2017 9:35 AM, PDT | Entertainment Tonight | See recent Entertainment Tonight news »

As far as fresh ideas go, Ghost in the Shell is pretty much the de rigueur A.I. story: a cyborg conflicted about her very cybernetics must question everything she know, including the shady corporation that created her. (The latter isn't a spoiler; it's in the trailer.)

The corporation here is Hanka Industries, which exists in a far-flung future where humans regularly enhance themselves with cybernetics and where human souls (or ghosts) can be put into synthetic bodies (or shells). Such is the case for Major (Scarlett Johansson), whose brain, we're told, survived an accident her body could not so "she" was transplanted into a new one, trained to become a living weapon and enlisted to work for government counter-terrorism cell Section 9.

Exclusive: Scarlett Johansson Likes What Her 'Ghost in the Shell' Role Can Teach Her Daughter About Risk Taking

Paramount Pictures

If the ghost of the movie isn't all that new -- it was »

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Filmart: Free Stone sells 'Chrysanthemum' to China

14 March 2017 4:00 PM, PDT | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Japanese sales outfit scores deal on historical sumo drama.

Japan’s Free Stone Productions has sold historical drama The Chrysanthemum And The Guillotine, directed by Takahisa Zeze (Heaven’s Story), to China (Bright East Films).

Based on a little-known Japanese story around the time of the Great Kanto Earthquake, which destroyed Tokyo in 1923, The Chrysanthemum And The Guillotine explores a romance between a professional lady sumo wrestler and a young anarchist dreaming of a classless society.

The film won the $15,000 Bright East Films award at last year’s Asian Project Market at the Busan International Film Festival. Bright East Films subsequently decided to buy all rights for China.

“This is a great kickstart for Japanese films, to have this attention from the China market. It means if the content is strong enough, we can sell titles even when they are not yet completed,” said Miyuki Takamatsu, CEO at Free Stone Productions.

Now in post-production »

- hjnoh2007@gmail.com (Jean Noh)

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4 items from 2017

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