Not Quite Final Thoughts on the Year of 12 Directors

Year of 12 Directors collage

The Korean Cultural Centre in London (aka the KCCUK) gave Korean cinephiles a special treat in 2012 with the Year of 12 Directors: one Korean director for every month of the year, four screenings (most of them free) for each filmmaker, with a bonus for the final session: a Q&A event with the director of that month flown in straight from South Korea.

Now that the Year of 12 Directors is over, it’s time to reflect. Continue reading “Not Quite Final Thoughts on the Year of 12 Directors”

Review: 「ホッタラケの島 〜遥と魔法の鏡〜」 (Hottarake no Shima: Haruka to Mahō no Kagami/Oblivion Island: Haruka and the Magic Mirror)

Year: 2009
Language: Japanese
Director: Sato Shinsuke
Animation Studio: 
Production I.G
Screenplay: Adachi Hirotaka, Sato Shinsuke
Art Direction: Nomura Masanobu
Character Design: Ishimori Ren, Hirata Ryō
CGI Direction: Nagasaki Takashi
Soundscore: Ueda Tadashi
Runtime: 100 min
Trailer: on YouTube
Film’s official website: Oblivion Island (US)
Seen at the BFI’s biennial weekend showcase for Anime.
On the surface, Hottarake no Shima has a number of similarities to 「ももへの手紙」 (Momo e no Tegami/A Letter to Momo, 2011), which I reviewed recently on Otherwhere. Continue reading “Review: 「ホッタラケの島 〜遥と魔法の鏡〜」 (Hottarake no Shima: Haruka to Mahō no Kagami/Oblivion Island: Haruka and the Magic Mirror)”

(A Sort of) Review: 「アキラ」 (Akira/Akira)

Year: 1988
Language: Japanese
Director: Otomo Katsuhiro
Studio: TMS Entertainment
Adaptation from: 
Otomo Katsuhiro’s manga of the same title
Screenplay: Otomo Katsuhiro, Hashimoto Izō
Cinematography: Misawa Katsuji
Animation Direction: Sato Hiroaki, Nakamura Takashi, Takeuchi Yoshio
Soundscore: Yamashiro Shoji
Runtime: 125 min
Trailer: on YouTube (not subtitled)
Seen at the BFI’s biennial weekend showcase for Anime. The film was shown on the BFI Southbank’s largest screen (3.8m x 9.2m in a theatre with superb sound acoustics). Watching Akira doesn’t get better than this!
Note: Although I have tried avoid spoilers in this (sort of) review, there are specific references to a number of scenes, so you might prefer to read this post only after having watched Akira.
There are certain films that I rarely watch – films that are heavy on violence, action scenes or horror. Every now and then, however, something comes along that falls into one of these categories but yet transcends its genre and comes crashing through any personal preferences I might have. Akira is one of those works. Continue reading “(A Sort of) Review: 「アキラ」 (Akira/Akira)”