Newly released in Japan: Ultraman Saga, Take the ‘A’ Train, Salvage Mice Trailers

Sion Sono, the director of Himizu, Love Exposure and Cold FishNo Akira Kurosawa films tonight. Instead I’m kicking off a mini-season devoted to the Japanese auteur Sion Sono where I review some of his works that I have on DVD. There’s a reason I’m starting this season now but I’m going to keep it under my hat. Let me just say that I am very excited about an event taking place next week.

In any next week will feature nothing but film reviews which comes as a relief because this week was a bit light on them despite getting off to a strong start with Starfish Hotel. Enough retrospective chit-chat, what’s happening in Japan this week?

The Japanese box-office charts for this week feature a mix of anime movies like Precure All Stars and Strike Witches at numbers 3 and 11 respectively while the live-action adaptations of the manga We Were Here and Ouran entered at 2 and 12.

Today sees an interesting variety of films released including Salvage Mice which looks like heaps of fun. It is produced by the Director of High Kick Girl and has a similar feel.


Salvage Mice

Release Date: 24th March 2012 (Japan)

Running Time: 81 mins.

Director: Ryuta Tasaki

Writer: Kei Taguchi

Starring: Mitsuki Tanimura, Tomohito Sato, Julia Nagano, Seiya Osada


Mai (Tanimura) is part of a team of robbers named the Salvage Mice. They are nice robbers since they steal lost treasure and return it to its rightful owner. All of this changes when she is betrayed by her partner Mariku (Sato) and she is placed on a wanted list. Mai decides to take revenge and with tough brawler Mio (Nagano) she is about to bring a world of hurt to Mariku.


Take the ‘A’ Train

Release Date: 24th March 2012

Running Time: N/A

Director: Yoshimitsu Morita

Writer: Yoshimitsu Morita

Starring: Kenichi Matsuyama, Eita, Shihori Kanjiya, Pierre Taki

Yoshimitsu Morita who directed ‘Crying Out Love in the Centre of the World’ helms this film which stars Kenichi Matsuyama. Tragically he died last December which makes this his last film.

Kei Komachi (Matsuyama) is an office worker who loves trains. One day he meets a fellow  railroad otaku named Kenta Kotama (Eita) who works at his family’s iron foundry. The two enjoy their lives as train-spotters and come to appreciate each other.

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Are Any of You Alive?, .hack// The Movie, Take the ‘A’ Train

I have not posted any trailers yet so I better start now. These three titles cover a broad range but the most interesting by far is “Are Any of You Alive?” which is a great title and looks very interesting.

Are Any of You Alive?

Release Date: 18th February 2012

Running Time: N/A

Director: Gakuryu Ishii (previously known as Sogo Ishii)

Writer: Gakuryu Ishii, Shiro Maeda

Starring: Shota Sometani, Rin Takanashi, Hakka Shiraihi, Asato Iida, Mai Takahashi

Shota Sometani has appeared in some exciting films lately like “Himizu” and “A Man with Style” and this film looks very interesting. So much so that writing up a synopsis is a bit hard.

Set in a university campus that is attached to a hospital, there is a escaped female patient, a strange man, students and a café worker in a love triangle, a mother looking for a lost child, a love-sick doctor and an unreceptive nurse and an urband legend which could be linked to the end of the world.

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