Archive for the ‘cinema’ Category

trace of breath

26Mar17

Komori Haruka’s documentary, Trace of Breath (息の跡) tells the story of Sato Teiichi, a survivor of the 2011 tsunami who has returned to the city of Rikuzentakata to reestablish the seed shop that he used to run there. In addition to selling seeds, however, Sato-san has also written an account of his experience of the […]


It’s the Year of the Fire Chicken, so why not start out with this beautiful painting by Itō Jakuchū (伊藤 若冲), one of the greatest painters of animals of all time? This particular painting is titled Rooster and Hen with Hydrangeas, and is part of the larger series called Dōshoku sai-e (動植綵絵), or Pictures of […]


Shin Godzilla (シン・ゴジラ — Shin Gojira), the new Godzilla movie co-directed by Hideaki Anno (of Neon Genesis Evangelion fame) and Shinji Higuchi (who worked on the Gamera movies from the 1990s), turns out to be a scantily concealed allegory about the failure of the Japanese government to deal adequately with the nuclear crisis at the […]


I was unfamiliar with the video work of Adam Magyar until I came across this PetaPixel article detailing Stainless, a series of photographs and super slow-motion videos of subway passengers waiting for their trains.  These videos are shot straight through the subway window, so as the train passes through the station the camera comes face-to-face […]


Kunio Kato’s beautiful and melancholic Academy Award winning animated short, Tsumiki no Ie (つみきのいえ) — The House of Small Cubes — is a film infused with the sadness of disappearing time.  The source of melancholy seems obvious at first: it’s the classic melancholy of old age in which the gradual erasure of the world one […]


Admittedly, only the last of these three works — the unparalleled Can Dialectics Break Bricks? — is truly an example of détournement in the classic sense, but all three of them do engage in the practice of using borrowed material for purposes wildly different than those they were originally intended for.  Détournement is a technique […]


A month or so ago, just when it was starting to become truly cold in Osaka, I happened to discover a snake lying on the side of a concrete walking path that runs along the Senri River, which is only a ten-minute walk from my house.  Though I’ve been living in Japan for over six […]