Author Archives: philipbrasor

Review: The Northman

Though not trailblazing in any significant way, Robert Eggers’ first two features successfully perverted forms that tend to be thought of as inviolable. The Witch was a horror movie that implied a deep distrust of the devices that characterize the … Continue reading

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Media watch: Victim of crime seeks compensation the hard way

When a person is the victim of theft or fraud, it is often difficult for them to recoup their losses, even if the perpetrator of the crime is caught and punished. According to a Jan. 12 article in the Asahi … Continue reading

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Review: She Said

The PR campaign for screenwriter Rebecca Lenkiewicz’s movie adaptation of New York Times reporters Megan Twohey and Jodi Kantor’s Pulitzer Prize-winning journalism foregrounds their story as a seminal instance in the progress of the #MeToo movement, which it is. Nevertheless, … Continue reading

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Media watch: Is Japan bankrupting itself just to make the U.S. happy?

We’ve already written about the huge amount of money that Japan plans to spend for defense in the coming years. We’ve also written about how Japan will acquire all the new hardware it says it needs. What we didn’t write … Continue reading

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Media watch: You can’t pay people to have kids

On Jan. 4 during his New Year’s press conference, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida vowed to implement measures to increase Japan’s low birth rate. In 2022, the number of babies born in Japan went below 800,000 for the first time, and … Continue reading

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Review: Kung Fu Stuntmen

Perhaps because it was produced by a guild of Hong Kong-based stuntmen, this documentary about the evolution of their craft since the 1950s is both exhaustive (quite a feat at 92 minutes) and wonkish. Every legend you can think of … Continue reading

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Review: Emergency Declaration

Given its star power and large cinematic canvas, this disaster film would qualify as a blockbuster had it been made by Hollywood in the 70s or 80s. Nowadays it would just seem anachronistic, but since it was made in South … Continue reading

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Review: Dream Horse

The British working class underdog movie is a proven box office winner, and much more convincing, if not more sentimental, than its American cognate, which is usually centered on sports. This almost apologetically formulaic fictionalization of a true story that … Continue reading

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Number 1 Shimbun column January

Here is our January column for the Number 1 Shimbun, which is about the process of choosing the current name of the imperial reign and why the attendant calendar system is so inconvenient.

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Best albums 2022

As so many music writers have already said, 2022 was a great year for pop, especially pop in album form. Though the theory is not publicly widespread, I would venture that the reason may have been a post-pandemic reaction on … Continue reading

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