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Rip Seijun Suzuki, The Anarchic Japanese Auteur Who Inspired Quentin Tarantino and Jim Jarmusch

  • Indiewire
Rip Seijun Suzuki, The Anarchic Japanese Auteur Who Inspired Quentin Tarantino and Jim Jarmusch
“I make movies that make no sense,” Seijun Suzuki would often say, and he wasn’t being modest. The prolific director, who died earlier this month at the age of 93, was the Jackson Pollock of Japanese cinema, an irrepressibly creative artist who painted with gobs of color and geysers of fake blood in order to defy the strictures of narrative and remind viewers that movies are more than the stories they tell.

His hyper-stylized gangster sagas, which had a way of turning the most basic B-picture plots into unfettered symphonies for the senses, were born out of a rabid intolerance for boredom; audiences never knew what was going to happen next, and sometimes it’s tempting to suspect that Suzuki didn’t either. Few directors ever did more to fundamentally demolish our understanding of what film could be, and even fewer did so while working under the auspices of a major production studio.
See full article at Indiewire »

Rushes. Proust, Seijun Suzuki, "Song to Song" & "Zama" Trailers

  • MUBI
Get in touch to send in cinephile news and discoveriesNEWSSeijun SuzukiThe great Japanese studio rabble rouser Seijun Suzuki, best known for his crazed remixes of pulp genre films in the late 1950s and 1960s (Tokyo Drifter, Branded to Kill) and also for his late career renaissance (Pistol Opera, Princess Raccoon), has died at the age of 92.On the other side of the industry, Time critic and documentary filmmaker Richard Shickel has also passed away.On a more positive note, the second film program for the great Knoxville music festival Big Eats has been announced, and it's a humdinger, ranging from a focus on directors Jonathan Demme and Kevin Jerome Everson to programs of new avant-garde work.Recommended Viewinga researcher in Quebec has identified the only known moving image footage of Marcel Proust, found in a 1904 recording of a wedding.Finally, a view at Terrence Malick's long-in-the-works drama set in the Austin music scene,
See full article at MUBI »

Tiff 2014. Correspondences #3

  • MUBI
Dear Danny,

I also rode the Tokyo Tribe rollercoaster, and my head hasn’t stopped spinning yet. Slamming together the most rabid excesses of the worlds of manga comics and hip-hop music, it’s a continuous blitzkrieg: Sono’s ne plus ultra of sheer brio, and, along with Godard’s Adieu au language, the festival’s most assaultive sensory experience so far. Its pinwheel neon hues, inflamed camera movements and acrobatic gangland mugging are straight-up dilations of Seijun Suzuki’s vintage gonzo pulp—indeed, the first time I ever heard Japanese rapping on screen was during a brief interlude in Suzuki’s mock-opera Princess Raccoon. I doubt even that veteran iconoclast, however, could have dreamed up the bit in Tokyo Tribe when the vile underworld kingpin (Riki Takeuchi), swollen like an obscene parade float, pulverizes a field of warring gangs with a Gatling gun held, of course, crotch-level. Such moments of absolute glee abound,
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108 boards sales on But Life Goes On

  • ScreenDaily
108 boards sales on But Life Goes On
Exclusive: Yuji Kanda’s film just wrapped shooting in Tokyo.

Japan’s Bees Connexion has announced But Life Goes On, starring Collin Chou from the Matrix series, has been picked up for international sales by Toronto-based 108 Media Corporation.

Written and directed by Yuji Kanda, the Japanese arthouse film just wrapped shooting in Tokyo.

Kanda previously directed The Story Teller’s Apprentice, a humorous film adapted from a hit theatre play. He was also an associate producer on Seijun Suzuki’s Princess Raccoon and Pistol Opera.

Based in La and Beijing, trilingual action talent Collin Chou is known for playing Seraph, protector of the Oracle in The Matrix Revolutions and The Matrix Reloaded. He plays the lead in But Life Goes On, as a taxi driver suffering from a traumatic event whose past catches up with him.

Ryo Ebe, director, Asia, at 108 Media Corporation explained their decision to pick up the film: “Japanese movies are having a very
See full article at ScreenDaily »

The Not-So-Savage Messiahs

  • MUBI
“If images don’t do anything in this culture,” I said, plunging on, “if they haven’t done anything, then why are we sitting here in the twilight of the twentieth century talking about them? And if they only do things after we have talked about them, then they aren’t doing them, we are. Therefore, if our criticism aspires to anything beyond soft-science, the efficacy of images must be the cause of criticism, and not its consequence—the subject of criticism and not its object. And this,” I concluded rather grandly, “is why I direct your attention to the language of visual affect—to the rhetoric of how things look—to the iconography of desire—in a word, to beauty!” I made a voilá gesture for punctuation, but to no avail. People were quietly filing out.  —Dave Hickey, The Invisible Dragon.

“Originally, the embeddedness of an artwork in the
See full article at MUBI »

Zhang ZiYi: Woman Of Many Talents

Zhang ZiYi is one of my favorite actresses, her acting is always great to watch, she fights very well and always chooses great movies, how can i not like her. Some of my favorite movies including Zhang are Hero, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, House Of The Flying Daggers, Rush Hour 2 and The Banquet.

Selected Filmography

2000:Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

2001:Rush Hour 2

2002:Hero

2004:House of Flying Daggers

2005:Memoirs of a Geisha

2006:The Banquet

2012:The Grandmasters

Background

Zhang was born and raised in Beijing, to Zhang Yuanxiao, an accountant and later economist, and Li Zhousheng, a kindergarten teacher. She is very close to her older brother, Zhang Zinan. Zhang began studying dance when she was 8 years old; subsequently, she joined the Beijing Dance Academy by her parents’ suggestion at the age of 11. While at this boarding school, she noticed how mean the other girls were to each
See full article at AsianMoviePulse »

Asian Cinema Scene: Zhang Ziyi as Peking Opera Star

Eight years ago, Zhang Ziyi soared into public consciousness as the tempestuous heroine in Ang Lee's Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. She's continued to score in sumptuous epics like Hero, House of Flying Daggers, and The Banquet, as well as off-beat pleasures such as Seijun Suzuki's Princess Raccoon. (Let's all try to forget Memoirs of a Geisha, shall we?) In her latest film, which opened in China last week, she plays a Peking Opera singer.

Forever Enthralled is the English title of Mei Lanfang; the name of a real-life, internationally-recognized opera star well-known for playing female roles over the course of a career that lasted more than 50 years. Leon Lai, a veteran Hong Kong actor and pop singer, takes on the challenging assignment to play the legendary character, while Zhang plays fellow performer Meng Xiaodong, who was known for playing bearded men (?!). The two singers met, married, became parents, and divorced,
See full article at Cinematical »

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