March 4, 2011

The Clone Returns Home (Kanji Nakajima, 2008)

WHAT IT IS: After his accidental death during a mission in outer space, Kohei Takahara, an astronaut, is cloned in order to continue the mission. But the clone, fixating on a traumatic childhood memory of the original Kohei, goes AWOL and attempts to return to “his” childhood home. HOW IT IS: Although the premise seemed conducive to the movie becoming […]
March 3, 2011

Instant Swamp (Satoshi Miki, 2009)

WHAT IT IS: After her mother’s suicide attempt, Haname, a young woman in crisis, finds a letter addressed to her long-lost biological father and decides she wants to meet him. HOW IT IS: After the surreal Adrift in Tokyo (2007) Miki disappoints with this unfocused fable exploring the great divide between magical thought and rational thought, as observed through Haname’s […]
March 3, 2011

Legendary Assassin (Chung Chi Li and Jacky Wu, 2008)

WHAT IT IS: Following the murder of an important triad boss, the assassin is trapped on the small island where the deed occurred due to weather conditions. Using his dazzling martial arts and impeccable professional skills, he must evade capture by the local triad out to avenge their leader and escape police capture, all the while lugging around his victim’s […]
June 29, 2010

20th Century Boys Trilogy (Yukihiko Tsutsumi, 2008-2009)

WHAT IT IS: Kenji, a failed musician turned convenience store clerk, is concerned about a terrible (but familiar) virus outbreak in Africa. When a popular doomsday cult surfaces branding that symbol, Kenji conceived as a child with his friends, World events take on new meaning: someone is using the Book of Prophesies Kenji wrote as a child as a blueprint […]
April 20, 2010

Love Exposure (Shion Sono, 2008)

Hoping for a closer relationship with his heartbroken father, his father a recently anointed priest in the Catholic Church, their relationship limited to the confessional, Yu Tsunoda begins to master the art of photographing women’s undergarments with masterful “pervert” techniques or, let me be clearer, photographing strangers and passers-by using “pervert gymnastics” to catch a glimpse under women’s dresses. Forced […]
April 20, 2010

Antique (Kyu-dong Min, 2008)

His motivations nebulous, a young man opens a neighborhood Western-style bakery called Antique, employing a host of off-the-wall characters: a gay chef of international calibre whose pastries can make any man, gay or straight, fall in love with him; a childhood friend and would-be bodyguard; and an irreverent young apprentice chef. The results are simply delicious. Directed by Korean director […]
April 20, 2010

Rough Cut (Hun Jang, 2008)

Unable to complete his most recent action film for lack of a decent co-star, plagued by his reputation as a brawler and previous incidents with headliners, a Korean action movie star turns to a gangster as a replacement, under the gangster’s condition that all the fight scenes they are to shoot be real fights. Co-written and produced by critically acclaimed […]
April 20, 2010

Dream (Kim Ki-duk, 2008):

WHAT IT IS: With his dreams, a man controls the sleepwalking of a young woman against her will. The two seem linked to each other by their past romantic experiences. Will the situation bring them closer or build to an unavoidable tragedy? HOW IT IS: With 2003’s Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter … and Spring, Kim Ki-duk had shown that he […]
April 20, 2010

Ip Man (Wilson Yip, 2008)

WHAT IT IS: Ip Man, a martial arts master, renowned for his kung fu style (Wing Chun) and soon to be for his many disciples, including Bruce Lee, must go against his own code of conduct to protect his fellow chinamen when war breaks out. HOW IT IS: Directed by Wilson Yip, Ip Man, a blockbuster Hong Kong production, has […]