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The Enforcer (1976)
9/10
Film score
29 September 2016
The movie's great, the music's wrong, I mean, the music including the main title is too jazzy and light for a Dirty Harry movie. Jerry Fielding is a great composer and had done many good movie and television music, but his style doesn't fit for the Dirty Harry film franchise. This movie, I believe, would had had much better reception if the film score had been done by Lalo Schifrin as the other four films. The film score makes this movie feel unrelated and unnatural to the DH franchise, and feels like watching a different Clint Eastwood action flick. The movie itself was second best other than the first Dirty Harry. Tyne Daly was wonderful, and had good chemistry with Clint Eastwood, though Mr. Eastwood seemed to be a little shoulder relaxed as Harry Callahan compared to the previous films. But this movie has some of the best hard blow quotes by Harry, especially towards Captain McKay.
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6/10
Anata gonomi no
29 August 2011
The title "Anata gonomi no" is based on the lyrics of a song sung by Chiyo Okumura titled "Koi no dorei" (Slave of Love) that was popular in the same year that this movie was released, in 1969. Okumura had a small part and also sings this song in this movie. The meaning is something like "as you like".

I saw this movie a few years ago as a late night movie on TV. The movie stars Mari Atsumi who was regarded as one of the first "porno" actress in Japan, but what she shows in this movie is less than what teen idols show on TV today. The movie is a very light comedy about a rich grandma (Chouko Iida), her lascivious son (Junzaburo Ban), and a misogynistic grandson (Keizo Kawasaki) buying off a bride school, and their involvement with the pretty clerk who works at the school (Mari Atsumi). There is not much more to the story, but it was fun to see the above mentioned actors and comedians whom were popular then, and they were funnier than I had expected. The movie was nostalgic for me.
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7/10
Christoph Waltz saved The Green Hornet
10 June 2011
The below the average character that Seth Rogen impersonates is disappointing for those who expects the original Britt Reid character, but fits this movie.

Cameron Diaz doesn't even show effort to act, but she is good as herself, and lightens up the movie.

Jay Chou as Kato is excellent, and saves this movie.

But the true savior of this movie is by the splendid (well, maybe not that much considering his ability) and effortless acting of Christoph Waltz for his accurate portrayal of Chudnofsky. There were a lot of good movies that would have been better if the villain was played by a skilled actor. The Green Hornet is an average movie but was fun because the villain's character was evil yet funny and interesting.

I saw this movie in both the original English and the Japanese dubbed version. As for this movie only, the Japanese version was better, which never was the case for all movies that I had seen. The original English dialogs were a little too violent and annoying, however the "Japanese dub-over artists" were very skilled to make this movie fun.

Finally, the true main character of this movie is the Black Beauty(s). They were beautiful! I read an article about the making of this movie that 29 Imperials, model years '65 and '66 were used、and only 3 are left in shape. The movie showed great action using the cars, but still, mottainai!!
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Bones: The Titan on the Track (2006)
Season 2, Episode 1
9/10
Nice introduction episode of Dr. Camille Saroyan
14 October 2009
I found this series interesting from the beginning of season one and have seen many of the season one episodes. Here in Tokyo, this series is shown as a late late show starting from 3:10AM on Wednesday night (Thursday morning) and most of the time I recorded it to watch on the weekend, whenever I remembered. All of the cast are very attractive and good, and most of the stories were good. Still, it did not give me the urge to remember to see all. The reason, I myself did not realize until seeing this season two starter, was that the relationships between the characters were just " push" and "pull" ( I don't know a good English expression). Sam Cullen played by John M. Jackson, I though, was the guy to bundle the team, but was not even a regular cast. As for Dr. Goodman, I didn't even notice that he was a boss. I was getting a little tired of seeing this "making of mannerism" series but gave it a try last night which was this season two starter. Dr. Camille Saroyan is a great character to "catch and release" the difficult and unique characters (sorry again, I don't know a good expression) and also seems to become a strong and reliable boss. Of course this is because of the very talented Ms. Tamara Taylor, whom I have seen for the very first time, and makes me wonder how deep the American TV industry is to bring in such a wonderful but unknown (sorry!) actor to this show. I am urged to see all the episodes from now on.
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8/10
Aibo, and the Movie version
8 August 2008
Aibo is a popular detective drama on Japanese television and the seventh season will premiere on October 2008. Aibo means partners, which is a common title and somewhat lacks the urge to watch. Not only by this title but due to some popular variety shows that were on air at the same time frame, the audience ratings of Aibo were not so high during the first few seasons. But because of the fun characters, skillful scenario, and good acting, Aibo had core fans from the beginning, and the popularity went to the general audience. Now the ratings are quite high and stable, and eventually Aibo gekijo-ban (theatrical version) was made.

Aibo is about a gifted, former elite detective who was disliked by the upper levels of the police organization (he is too smart) and given a position with no active work to do. He is teamed by a friendly and athletic but a little clumsy detective, and together they solve all kinds of difficult crimes. Heard of such story somewhere? Maybe, but the scenario is solid and good (most of the time), and the directors are again, most of the time, good. Seiji Izumi, the director of the gekijo-ban, is one of the main directors of the TV series. And the best part is due to Yutaka Mizutani's peculiar but believable acting (Ukyou Sugishita, the smart detective) and Yasufumi Terawaki's jocular performance (Kaoru Kameyama, Ukyou's partner), which makes this show quite impressive. These two are real actors who can really act, which cannot be seen in most of the recent TV shows in Japan with idol-like stars who cannot act properly. The co-stars (like Ittoku Kishibe, Sawa Suzuki) are also very good, and some other co-stars, who may not be famous, are real actors from stage and theaters.

Aibo gekijo-ban was made with the same cast and staff of the TV version, and with some big name guest stars. The story starts with a bomb threat to a politician and other murder cases with identical clues left at the crime scenes, which leads to a bomb threat at the Tokyo big city marathon. Ukyou and Kaoru investigate the case on their own as usual, and finds out the sad background of this crime. This is actually the whole plot of this movie, and this was on the television commercials of this movie on the TV Asahi network (one of the sponsor of the show), shown like almost every 30 minutes between the commercial breaks during April and May. The movie was good in terms of Mizutani's excellent acting, and to see a higher cost involved. But the plot was already revealed by seeing the commercials (that is why I did not check the spoiler mark), and there were much better and complicated scenarios for the TV versions. With a 10/10 for the best stories of the TV series, I will give this gekijo-ban an 8/10.
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6/10
Anata gonomi no
5 September 2007
The actual title of this movie is "Anata gonomi no" and not Anata sukimi no. The kanji (Chinese character) can be read as "suki" but with the hiragana "mi" that follows, the character is read as "konomi", or in this case "gonomi" as it follows a noun "Anata". The title is based on the lyrics of a song sung by Chiyo Okumura titled "Koi no dorei" (Slave of Love) that was popular in the same year that this movie was released in 1969. Okumura had a small part and also sings this song in this movie. The meaning is something like "as you like".

I saw this movie about a week ago as a late night movie on TV. The movie stars Mari Atsumi who was regarded as one of the first "porno" actress in Japan, but what she shows in this movie is less than what teen idols show on TV today. The movie is a very light comedy about a rich grandma (Chouko Iida), her lascivious son (Junzaburo Ban), and a misogynistic grandson (Keizo Kawasaki) buying off a bride school, and their involvement with the pretty clerk who works at the school (Mari Atsumi). There is not much more to the story, but it was fun to see the above mentioned actors and comedians whom were popular then, and they were funnier than I had expected. The movie was nostalgic for me.
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The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (1964–1968)
10/10
Different from Bond
12 August 2006
There was an original style in this TV series that made it fun and different from James Bond. Bond is a super spy who works intently for England and for the world. Solo and Illya were "salaryman" spies which manages espionage as a job. Most of the stories, whether good or bad, had this atmosphere. One I remember is The Deadly Toys Affair. In the scene in the beginning, Solo and Illya are told by their boss, Waverly, that they are expendable, and they are sent out to destroy a Thrush factory. In the midst of a shootout with the Thrushmen, they receive next instructions from Waverly thru their pen communicator without forgiveness, saying that they are not expendable anymore. I guess many people working in an organization had an experience of receiving a forcing message from their boss in the midst of an important meeting or work. This had turned into an everyday situation now due to the cellular phone, and it seems that the present was predicted 40 years ago. The sympathy of those who work in an organization is obtained, which makes this series fun and interesting. It was also because of the three wonderful actors that was able to have this peculiar wonderful atmosphere of this show. If an UNCLE movie or another series is to be made in the future, this atmosphere must not change. The actors must be good and must understand the original UNCLE concept, they must not be too tall, they must be handsome and smart looking, and neat, and clean. I mean, no beard or mustache, no hairy actors. Everybody involved in such plan should understand the original atmosphere of UNCLE, or will fail like most of the remakes. Also, it must not be forgotten that the music by the greats (J. Goldsmith, L. Schifrin, R. Drasnin, G. Fried, W. Scharf, R. Shores, M. Stevens, N. Riddle) was the big element that made this series so pleasant. Quentin Tarantino, how about trying out an UNCLE movie, as producer? I think you can do it!
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Search (1972–1973)
10/10
I loved the theme music!
10 August 2006
As a brat raised in LA during the mid 60s, I was mad about UNCLE, I Spy, The Avengers, THE Cat, all the good old TV spy and action shows. Returning to Japan in '68 was a big culture change, especially the dull and boring TV shows (not much change in 2006, even worse). It was around '73 that one of the network here aired 5 or 6 episodes of Search. It was called Purobu Sousa Shirei (Probe Criminal Investigations Command). It was dubbed in Japanese (no bilingual TV at that time), and I can't remember any story, but the brilliant titleback and the superb theme music is something that I wish to see and hear again. One scene I recall is a bird's eye view of an orange Nissan Z car driven by one of the Probe agent. I thought it was so cool! Oh, and did I mention Angel Tompkins, she was so beautiful! It seems difficult to see this series even in the USA now, but I am sure that there are thousands of "hidden Search fans" in the world. I will definitely buy the whole series if sold on DVD.
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7/10
Banzai, Nick Adams!
7 August 2006
The other day I found this movie at a nearby video shop by chance. Contrary to my anticipation, I found this movie quite fun. The movie I saw was in Japanese and Nick Adams' voice was dubbed, but his acting was pretty good, though he pulled up his pants a lot.

This brought me good memories of Mr. Adams. As a kid about ten years old at that time, my father (who was the USA representative for Toho and manager of the Toho La Brea Theatre) and I went to the LA airport to see him off. He was going to Japan to take this movie. He was very friendly and relaxed, he was with his wife and his little boy, he looked very happy and energetic. I remember asking him, Mr. Adams, how are fight scenes taken in movies? He replied with a nice big smile and with a fighting gesture, we really fight and punch! Gasshou! meaning I join my palms together for Mr. Adams and for my late father.
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