Ghost in the Shell: ARISE border:2 Ghost Whispers, Flying Bodies – a Hiroyuki Nakano Nonfiction Film, Negative: Nothing – Step by Step for Japan, Tobidase Shinsengumi, Senpuku, Kotatsu, Orange, Murderous Intent and Meow, Gebaruto, Maria Roaring Song Japanese Film Trailers

Doctor Who 50th Episode Gallery 2This week was a bit of a transitional period, wrapping up the Republic of Thieves read-along, sating my desire to write about Samurai Flamenco and getting my reactions before and after episodes 7 and 8, and posting about the latest Doctor Who 50th Anniversary special. It’s all in preparation for a Christmas period when I up the ante and post lots of reviews for films. More on that next week. What did I watch in film terms? South Korean disaster flick Flu and that was it. I’m preparing the finishing touches to the latest winter anime guide which will be released by Anime UK News and my thoughts on the other titles from the autumn season.

Yesterday’s trailer post was about three films, all of which were totally different from each other but today’s post features lots of documentaries.


Flying Bodies – a Hiroyuki Nakano Nonfiction FilmFlying Bodies Film Poster

Running Time: 78 mins.

Release Date: November 30th, 2013

Director: Hiroyuki Nakano

Bodies fly in coordination alongside some visual special effects as the all-male super-technological rhythmic gymnastic troupe of Aomori University led by Issey Miyake in a performance in Tokyo earlier this year. I’m not one for dancing but this looks kind of fun. You’ll have to go to the website for a trailer!


Travelling Projector                            Travelling Projector Film Poster

Japanese Title: 旅 する 映写機

Romaji: Tabi Suru Eishaki

Running Time: 105 mins.

Release Date: November 30th, 2013

Director: Keiko Morita

Keiko Morita’s film is all about film projectors during a time when the digitisation of films is rapidly underway in Japan. Keiko heads to small town Urakawa, Hokkaido and explores the history of a cinema with the staff at the theatre who maintain it.


Continue reading “Ghost in the Shell: ARISE border:2 Ghost Whispers, Flying Bodies – a Hiroyuki Nakano Nonfiction Film, Negative: Nothing – Step by Step for Japan, Tobidase Shinsengumi, Senpuku, Kotatsu, Orange, Murderous Intent and Meow, Gebaruto, Maria Roaring Song Japanese Film Trailers”

SPEC: Close – Reincarnation, Asa Hiru Ban, Story of a Butcher Shop Japanese Film Trailers

Samurai Flamenco OH GODI’m splitting the trailer post up again and will continue doing this because it’s better to have shorter posts than huge ones with lots of videos and text. There are three Japanese films released today in Japan and more tomorrow. The big hulking beast is the latest SPEC movie so a lot of the other releases seem to be counter-programming. Don’t like the big-budget flashy SPEC films then you get documentaries, comedies, and anime.

The SPEC films are a phenomenon of their own. They are based on a television series which started with Keizoku back in 1999 and has had numerous television series and movie adaptations.  They look fun but my viewing habits are fragmented so I won’t be embarking on watching them.

I must admit that I have no idea what’s going on with the films at this point because there are so many of them!

SPEC: Close – Reincarnation                                              SPEC Close Progress Criss Cross Version

Japanese: 劇場版 SPEC 結(クローズ) 爻(コウ)ノ篇

Romaji: Gekijō-ban supekku yui (kurōzu) (Kō) no-hen

Running Time:  85 mins.

Release Date: November 29th, 2013

Director: Yukihiko Tsutsumi

Writer: Yumie Nishiogi

Starring: Erika Toda, Ryo Kase, Raita Ryu, Kazuki Kitamura, Chiaki Kuriyama, Ryunosuke Kamiki, Yuko Oshima, Takahiro Miura, Kasumi Arimura,

This is the second half of the two-part conclusion (the first being Incarnation which was released at the beginning of the month.) It’s the final dramatic summary of the TV show and movie franchise with all sorts of guests from different episodes/movies. like Chiaki Kuriyama and so forth

Detective Saya Toma (Erika Toda) has an IQ of 201 and works together with veteran detective Takeru Sebumi (Ryo Kase) in the Unsolved Crimes Unit taking on and cracking mysterious cases that others have given up on. As a fierce, earth-shaking battle rages with spec holders, the powers hidden within Saya are awakened. and the mysteries regarding her relationship with Takeru, the fate of humanity, and all other matters are revealed.


Continue reading “SPEC: Close – Reincarnation, Asa Hiru Ban, Story of a Butcher Shop Japanese Film Trailers”

Samurai Flamenco Loses the Plot?

Genki Samurai Flamenco Seriously

This is a reaction post to episode 8 and it follows up yesterday’s post analysing my thoughts on the direction of the series because… Samurai Flamenco has truly gone off the map? I’m still trying to digest this episode but the whole King Torture and evil animal supervillains thing is being played with a straight face. I’m not sure I like it as much as I thought I would but I didn’t hate it.

Continue reading “Samurai Flamenco Loses the Plot?”

Samurai Flamenco’s Turning Point

Genki Samurai Flamenco WTF Moment

Massive Spoilers

It has been five days but I’m still trying to recover from episode seven of Samurai Flamenco. In the future, when humanity lives in their sky cities maintained by tsundere robot maids, historians will look back at the greatest achievements of the post-modern age and this episode will be forever remembered for having the greatest WTF moment in the history of ANYTHING.

The moment was special.

The moment made me yell “OH MY GOD!”

Samurai Flamenco OH MY GOD

It was the moment when anime said “f*ck you” to reality and I laughed so hard I almost choked on a cake!

It is a moment I remember when it is least appropriate and a big stupid grin spreads across my face and I so desperately want to whisper Guillotine Gorilla.

Come on those of you who have seen it… Whisper it… GUILLOTINE GORILLA

Continue reading “Samurai Flamenco’s Turning Point”

Republic of Thieves Read-Along Week Five

Republic of Thieves Book CoverHello once again dear audience and welcome to the final Republic of Thieves read-along post where the curtain is brought down on Sabetha and Locke’s romance, the play in Espara and the election in Karthain. This week’s questions come from Tethyan Books and they have been split them into different timelines – Espara and Karthain – much like last week. Week one was all about getting to know the characters again while week two was all about revealing Sabetha, week three was all about Espara and now we get to the real meat of the story where the Sabetha and Locke match wits in the election and the theatre production is about to go on the road, week four was all about cock-blocking and we see the results of the election this week! I think we need some epic music for the conclusion of the book so play this track while reading my answers:

Here are the questions:

In Espara…

1. The Republic of Thieves:  It’s the first and final performance!  What did you think of the play?  Were you entertained, or eager to get on with the rest of the story?  Also, how do you feel about how the play fits in the novel, in terms of the story and the characters who play the parts?

I was hooked by the events in the Espara timeline and the twists and turns they took. It helped build characters up and was entertaining to read but when I look back at it I wish there was more time spent on the election plus I did notice some interesting aspects like the priest claiming that the characters from the play were real and are unquiet ghosts!

Continue reading “Republic of Thieves Read-Along Week Five”

Doctor Who 50th Episode The Day of the Doctor

The War Doctor (John Hurt): “Hello”         Doctor who 50th Episode Poster

Doctor Who (David Tennant): “I’m the Doctor”

Doctor Who (Matt Smith): “Sorry about the Dalek”

Clara: “Also the showing off”

Spoilers (slight ones, at least)

I used to write about Doctor Who (and even the Sarah Jane Adventures) here when I first started this blog but stopped because there was little that grabbed my attention (okay there was the Van Gogh episode and last season’s one about the haunted manor) and I wanted to focus on films and anime. All that changed with last night’s episode celebrating the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who. It is worth writing about because this episode was really well done.

This episode was meant to be big. The last episode of the last season ended on this stunning revelation:

Doctor Who Season 12

News and trailers and one-off mini episodeswere steadily released by the BBC. David Tennant and Billie Piper were coming back. Ace actor JOHN HURT was going to play The War Doctor in the heart of the Time War. It was going to play in a cinema as a 3D feature.

Continue reading “Doctor Who 50th Episode The Day of the Doctor”

The Tale of Princess Kaguya, Tamako in Moratorium, The Extreme Sukiyaki, Honto Ni Atta! Noroi Video 55, Ties, Persona 3 The Movie #1 Spring of Birth, Bayonetta Bloody Fate, No Voice Japanese Film Trailers

Coffee Time This is my second trailer post of the week! The first post contained a quirky selection of titles but this is where we get to the big names, anime and alternative programming. In anime terms we have the much hyped Persona 3 movie and the cult title Bayonetta Bloody Fate full of supernatural action. The big anime release has to be Isao Takahata’s Princess Kaguya, his first work as a director in fourteen years. The more I see of it the more I want to watch it. Other interesting titles include Tamako in Moratorium and The Extreme Sukiyaki which have writers, directors and actors who have been in plenty of quality titles I have already reviewed. We’re talking about Nobuhiro Yamashita and Shiro Maeda, Kengo Kora and Shuichi Okita, Atusko Maeda and Arata. If I had to choose one to see it would be Tamako in Moratorium because it has the quirky sense of humour and easy to identify with character plus it looks so freaking adorable.

The Tale of Princess Kaguya  The Story of Princess Kaguya Film Poster

Japanese: かぐや 姫 の 物語

Romaji: Kaguya Hime no Monogatari

Running Time: 137 mins.

Release Date: November 23rd, 2013

Director: Isao Takahata

Writer: Isao Takahata, Riko Sakaguchi (Screenplay)

Starring: Aki Asakura (Kaguya), Kengo Kora (Sutemaru), Nobuko Miyamoto (ouno), Takeo Chii (Okina)

This is the big release for the weekend, the latest Studio Ghibli project! It’s helmed by Studio Ghibli co-founder Isao Takahata, writer and director of Only Yesterday, Pom Poko Grave of the Fireflies and Little Norse Prince Valiant. I can vouch for them all being very good since they come on British television regularly.

What is he bringing his considerable talents to? An adaptation of a famous ancient Japanese folktale originally called Taketori Monogatari (The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter) which is about a princess named Kaguya who is discovered as a bab inside the stalk of a growing plant by a bamboo cutter and adopted. Joe Hisaishi (The Kids Return, Spirited Away) is composing the film’s soundtrack. Check out Alua Luna’s fascinating post about the different re-tellings of this folk-tale.


Continue reading “The Tale of Princess Kaguya, Tamako in Moratorium, The Extreme Sukiyaki, Honto Ni Atta! Noroi Video 55, Ties, Persona 3 The Movie #1 Spring of Birth, Bayonetta Bloody Fate, No Voice Japanese Film Trailers”

It All Began When I Met You, Madame Marmalade’s Mysterious Puzzle Answer Version, Love Craft Girl Japanese Film Trailers

Kyousogiga Lady KotoI’m splitting this trailer post up again but not because there’s too many in number but too many interesting films. The real meat comes tomorrow but just ahead of their release is one great looking title – Oh Madame Marmalade, how I love thee, I wish you were a video-game character then I could play with you… Uh… I mean the game! – and two others. Looking at the title of the post, this could be a light novel that would get an anime adaptation… It All Began When I Met You Madame Marmalade my Mysterious Lovecraft Girl.

Before the trailers, a little summary of the posts this week: 

This week I posted about two more Japanese films screening as part of the BFI’s Gothic season. They are the mighty Kuroneko and The Ghost Story of Yotsuya. I also my fourth entry in the Republic of Thieves Read-along and babbled out an incoherent post about the brilliance of Kyousogiga. Messy and undignified but heartfelt. I’m also went looking for the games Ruin Arm and Lady Stalker Apocalypse Engine, and Wonder Project J2. Bringing things back to films, I went to see Gravity last night and it was a fantastic film. Exciting, tense and straight to the point, no messing around. I’ll be going to see the Korean film Flu next which actually has a UK release!

Here they are!

It All Began When I Met You                                   It All Began When I Met You Film Poster

Japanese: すべて は 君 に 逢えた から

Romaji: Subete wa Kimi ni Aeta Kara

Running Time: 106 mins.

Release Date: November 22nd, 2013

Director: Katsuhide Motoki

Writer: Atsuko Hashibe (Screenplay)

Starring: Hiroshi Tamaki, Rin Takanashi, Fumino Kimura, Masahiro Higashide, Tsubasa Honda, Miwako Ichikawa, Emiri Kai, Saburo Tokito, Ryutaro Yamasaki, Nene Otsuka, Chieko Baisho, Nenji Kobayashi

This looks like one those awful Hollywood romance flicks packed full of actors that were released a few years ago. New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day or whatever they were. Bah! I’m a cynic so I hate that stuff. Katsuhide Motoki, director of the comedy Drugstore Girl, is here with an omnibus movie containing six love stories set in and around Tokyo Station to celebrate its 100th anniversary. It opened in 1914. Anyway, characters include a bullet train driver, students and what not. Actors include Rin Takanashi (Goth Love of Death), Masahiro Higashide (The Kirishima Thing) and Nene Otsuka (The Foreign Duck, Kiseki). And… Oh my God.. Hiroshi Tamaki, the guy from the utterly indescribably dull low-budget J-hora Ghost System, a film so dull I never thought I would mention it again… He’s certainly gone up in the world!



Madame Marmalade’s Mysterious Puzzle Answer Version Madame Marmalade's Mysterious Puzzle Answer Version Film Poster

Japanese: ナゾトキネマ マダム・マーマレードの異常な謎 解編

Romaji: Madamu Marmalade no Ijo na Nazo: Kaito Hen

Running Time: N/A

Release Date: November 22nd, 2013

Director: Yoshihiro Nakamura, Norio Tsuruta, Daiki Ueda

Writer: Yoshihiro Nakamura, Norio Tsuruta, Daiki Ueda (Screenplay),

Starring: Haruna Kawaguchi, Atsuko Takahata, Hajime Yamazaki, Narushi Ikeda, Shiro Namiki Tamae Ando, Koko Mori, Noriko Nakagoshi, Ippei Kanie, Maika Hara, Noriko Eguchi, Hana Sugisaki

Time for some fun with a foxy detective! This is the follow-up to last month’s puzzle omnibus film which demanded audience interaction to solve a mystery hidden in a series of short films held together by the framework of an investigation conducted by Madame Marmalade. For each short film there were different directors including Yoshihiro Nakamura (The Foreign DuckSee You Tomorrow, Everyone) probably doing drama, Norio Tsuruta (Ring 0: BirthdayDream Cruise) probably doing horror and an unknown in Daiki Ueda. With this Answer Version of the film the audience gets to find out the answers to some questions posed by the last film and the people who got the questions right get their names placed in the film. Awesome.

30 years ago, Shunnosuke Todo, the master of the film world revealed to his wife that there is a secret in three short films which contained a love story before he passed away. Now his wife is on the verge of death so she hires Madame Marmalade (Kawaguchi) to find the secret!



Love Craft Girl                                Lovecraft Girl Film Poster

Japanese: ラブクラフト ガール

Romaji: Rabukurafuto Gāru

Running Time: 91 mins.

Release Date: November 22nd, 2013

Director: Katsutoshi Hirabayashi

Writer: Keiko Kanome (Screenplay)

Starring: Sei Ando, Tomoya Nakamura, Masako Chiba, Yuki Sakurai,

LOVECRAFT GIRL??? Oh, it’s about women’s sex toys and not Cthulhu. Take it from me working in an office full of women where you’re the token male can be sanity shattering when they talk about sex never mind actually meeting Cthulhu… Anyway, Katsutoshi Hirabayashi (director of Penguin Fufu) is not trying to brainwash us into joining the Esoteric Order of Dagon or anything else Lovecraftian, he’s put this sex comedy together. Sei Ando, actress in Orpheus’ Lyre and Air Doll, acts alongside Tomoya Nakamura who came in Rampo Noir and Quirky Guys and Gals.

Akane Ogura (Ando) has joined a company that produces women’s sexual products as a designer. Since catching her boyfriend cheating on her she can focus on creating the best product on the market.


Kyousogiga I Love You

Kyousogiga Welcome Back Image

Kyousogiga has been mentioned on this blog multiple times, the first was with the ONA that was released back in 2011 followed by a joyous post when I found out that the one-shot ONA was due to get more episodes. I loved it. I hoped for more Kyousogiga and Toei saw fit to give it to us. And thank the anime Gods because this is my second favourite anime of the Autumn season a real breath of fresh air in a season mired with middling shows!

Continue reading “Kyousogiga I Love You”

Republic of Thieves Read-Along Week Four

Republic of Thieves Book CoverHello once again dear audience and welcome to the penultimate Republic of Thieves read-along where revelations are revealed, Sabetha and Locke get closer to doing the horizontal tango and there were major twists and turns. The revelations are so major we have been requested to hide spoilers so when you get to question 7 just highlight the text. Anyway, this week’s questions come from Andrea from The Little Red Reviewer who has split them into different timelines – Espara and Karthain – and she used the term cockblocking – it’s so cute when a woman uses it… unless it applies to me. Fortunately it applies to Locke and Sabetha who were still orbiting each other when we last saw them! Week one was all about getting to know the characters again while week two was all about revealing Sabetha, week three was all about Espara and now we get to the real meat of the story where the Sabetha and Locke match wits in the election and the theatre production is about to go on the road. Here are the questions:

Let’s start with the Espara timeline.

1. We finally know why Sabetha dies her hair, and that’s so disturbing even the Thiefmaker under Shade’s Hill was disgusted by it. Too dark for this world? Or just right?

When I began reading the passage I was irritated by Sabetha’s overreaction – you just want to sleep with me because I have red hair! Boo men!

Boo Sabetha, more like! Yes red heads are sexy and demanding¹ but Locke isn’t as base as that!!! As she explained her feelings more it sort of made sense why she may react like that and I was chilled to the bone when she gave her reasons. It came out of the blue and I would have appreciated more foreshadowing but then maybe my reaction was meant to be similar to Locke’s?

Anyway, I think it fits in with the world at large. This is a hard land full of superstitions, horrible traditions and brutality. Hands get cut off, people get executed in the street… Children get the noose! It fits. Furthermore it solidifies my impressions of gender inequality. Women may hold positions of power in the world Locke and Sabetha inhabit, they are captains, spy masters etc. but I still get the impression of inequality between the sexes. They still have to fight harder and they still get looked at like dolls. So yeah, it fits, it made me sympathise with Sabetha and it unnerved me. I hope Locke and Jean bring down the country where this tradition that Sabetha fears persists. Better yet I hope Sabetha does it.

¹  My favourite red-head is a fictional one called Sawa Nakamura, the most demanding red head in existence! And her hair colour isn’t even natural.

“Get changed and do some False Facing, Locke!”

Continue reading “Republic of Thieves Read-Along Week Four”