Author Archives: philipbrasor

Media watch: Starting deadline for paying back COVID loans approaches

One of the government’s countermeasures to address the economic hardship caused by COVID-19 was interest-free loans, called tokurei kashitsuke, for households whose income had dropped appeciably due to the pandemic. Though these kinds of loans have always been available, the … Continue reading

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Review: Pictures of the Old World

Filmed in 1972 but not released until 1988 due to censorship by the communist Czechoslovakian government, this documentary by filmmaker Dusan Hanak qualifies as the Slovakian cognate of Griel Marcus’s description of Bob Dylan’s Basement Tapes as a window into … Continue reading

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Review: Mad God

Sometimes the back story of a movie is more interesting than the movie itself. Phil Tippett is a legendary special effects maven who has worked on some of Hollywood’s most prestigious and popular sci-fi and fantasy films, including Robocop and … Continue reading

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Review: Black Adam

What’s most compelling, if not downright shocking, about Jaume Collet-Serra’s attempt to inject some much needed thematic mojo into the so-called DC Extended Universe is that while the origin story of a character that was mostly relegated to either villain … Continue reading

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Media watch: Death row inmates question the way they meet their ends

Several days ago, most major media outlets reported on a ¥33 million lawsuit filed by lawyers for 3 inmates on Osaka Detention House’s death row to change their execution method due to the cruel nature of the way those executions … Continue reading

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Review: Happening

The Japan distributors of Audrey Diwan’s 2021 Venice Golden Lion winner are probably patting themselves on the back for having waited so long to release Happening in Japan, since Annie Ernaux, the author of the novel on which it’s based, … Continue reading

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Review: The Electrical Life of Louis Wain

History mainly views Louis Wain as the Englishman who made the world safe for cat pictures. He didn’t photograph them. He drew them, initially with great verisimilitude and then in a more whimsical, anthropomorphic style, but when his feline illustrations … Continue reading

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Media watch: Is Japan ready for uterus transplants?

According to an article published by Asahi Shimbun on Nov. 25, Keio University has applied to the health ministry for permission to carry out uterus transplants. If permission is granted, the ministry will start screening applicants for the procedure early … Continue reading

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Review: Shades of the Heart

Kim Jong-kwan’s 2020 Korean adaptation of Josee, the Tiger and the Fish, titled simply Josee, was a minor hit in Japan, owing most likely to its source material, Seiko Tanabe’s 1984 short story, which has been adapted in Japan for … Continue reading

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Review: The Green Knight

Given the way he has decided to adapt the epic 14th century poem “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” for the screen, director David Lowery might seem to be putting himself out there to helm an MCU or DC comics … Continue reading

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