Archive for June, 2010

“The Professional: Golgo 13″ – A.J. Hakari

For years, I thought Zatoichi was Japan’s answer to James Bond, if only for the character’s longevity. But some would say that mantle truly belongs to Duke Togo — a.k.a. Golgo 13. Twice as brutal and just as lucky with the ladies, Golgo’s hard-boiled escapades rival even 007’s darkest days. Now I can’t vouch for [...]

“The Castle of Cagliostro” – A.J. Hakari

Every genre has its face. Hitchcock is synonymous with suspense, Chaplin with comedy, and so on. At the moment, Hayao Miyazaki’s visage represents the world of anime, which is a plus and a minus. The man’s fantasies have given anime more exposure than ever, but that also means misguided viewers assuming Japan is only good [...]

“Sword of the Stranger” – Chris Luedtke

I’ve grown weary of films carrying the dreaded “action” stamp. The genre, whether animated or flesh-and-blood, tends to come with a voice that whispers, “Don’t worry! We’ll get by on destroying stuff!” What should get my pulse pounding or adrenaline flowing usually results in a yawn that makes mountains crumble. But Sword of the Stranger [...]

“Coco Before Chanel” – Chris Luedtke

Like reality television, the fashion industry is something I’ve managed to avoid my entire life. The idea of someone spiffing themselves up because a small collection of superfluous individuals say it’s cool is preposterous. Coco Before Chanel documents the life of fashion design’s arguably biggest name but with a twist maybe only her devoted fans [...]

“Vampire Hunter D” – A.J. Hakari

Don’t you get a special tingle when cultures are filtered through an outsider’s perspective? You’ll get something enlightening once in a while, but mostly, you’ll see just how woefully misinformed we are of one another. I wouldn’t suggest that Vampire Hunter D made bloodsuckers into the 98-pound weaklings we see them as now, but as [...]