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Old 05-25-2021, 06:59 PM   #351
bob_124
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Re: YOLO -- Las Vegas and Tokyo Story Edition

Lucky break indeed! Great news.
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Old 05-29-2021, 02:08 AM   #352
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Re: YOLO -- Las Vegas and Tokyo Story Edition

Update:

I filed a petition to have my name changed to Hiru Andon and be given the undertitle bestowed in this thread, but since my inquiry was never met with any reply, I'll just take matters into my own hands.

Henceforth, I'll be known as Hiru Andon and expect to be addressed as such. Daytime Lamp, DL, or simply Hiru are all ok too. Anything else will be considered a sign of disrespect, and met with an instant ignore block, regardless of whether the offender has ever read this post or not.
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Old 06-03-2021, 12:47 AM   #353
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Re: YOLO -- Las Vegas and Tokyo Story Edition

My undertitle has been changed.





At last I see the world objectively. I have no father, no mother, no sister or brother, no children, no girlfriend or wife. I recognize the strengths and weaknesses of every man I meet within a few moments of speaking to him. There are none I count as my allies, although I first offer a friendly hand. Once declined, I dare any man to look into my eyes, no matter how high or how low he was born, no matter what he has suffered or what he has achieved in life. If he fails to meet my challenge, then I have already won. There can be no comfort in his position, for he cannot possibly prevail against my relentless pursuit.





Susumu Hirasawa's soundtrack runs through my mind every day. The clock is ticking; there is one man and one woman out there who have a modest ceiling. I will overcome them. I will not be denied.

Last edited by Shuffle; 06-03-2021 at 12:58 AM.
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Old 06-08-2021, 06:45 PM   #354
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Re: YOLO -- Las Vegas and Tokyo Story Edition

The doctor removed my splint and bandages and everything today. X-rays say bone is healing fine, good prognosis. Unfortunately, I can hardly move or bend my finger at all. My hand looks like it went through a meat grinder, lots of bandage burn and dead skin everywhere.

They told me to rehab every day, just keep bending the finger every which way and hold when it hurts, about 100 times per day. Should be 80% in about a month and fully healed in 12 weeks.
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Old 06-22-2021, 03:25 AM   #355
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Re: YOLO -- Las Vegas and Tokyo Story Edition

Well I'm back to writing now, and going to try playing guitar again in a few days. Still can't make a fist or bend my little finger much, but I guess that's what the 3 months of rehab are for.





I spent one day this past weekend curating a list of available titles for all of the great Japanese directors. Ozu, Shimizu, Mizoguchi, Naruse, Yamanaka, Inagaki, Kurosawa, Kinoshita, Ichikawa, Kobayashi, Shinoda, Teshigahara, Imamura, Oshima, Seijun Suzuki, Juzo Itami ... and then the animated stuff from Oshii, Miyazaki, and Satoshi Kon, finally modern Hirokazu Kore-eda. Probably missing some, but that's an extensive list.

Maybe it's the analytical side of my brain, but I just can't watch movies anymore unless I'm watching one director at a time in chronological order and experiencing his creative process develop over time. Style, yes, but mostly voice and themes. What did they write about? What sparks of inspiration and setbacks did they conjure up and endure throughout the ebbs and flows of their careers?


I'm already doing my Ozu and Setsuko Hara thread here:

https://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/6...-hara-1709100/


I'm not going to spend as much time and energy on these other movies as I'm putting into that project, just going to watch these, but I've put together this catalogue and now I'm ready to go.


Hiroshi Shimizu

I'm starting with Shimizu because his movies are closest to Ozu's, and almost all of his good ones are from before the war (naturally, Kore-eda will be last on my list). I've seen a couple of Shimizu films and Mr. Thank You happens to be a personal favorite. Sweet road trip movie about a bus driver who ferries passengers through the Depression-era Japanese countryside; a cute world-weary woman sitting behind him drinking whiskey from a flask, some lecherous dude with a fake mustache hitting on all the girls, sing-alongs, drinking, forced laborers telling their story, a mother selling her 17-year old daughter into prostitution, cheerful vibes on top of dark realities, dexterously told in a way that only Hiroshi Shimizu could.







This guy directed over 160 films in his career, but only 50 survive. Criterion released 8(?) on DVD some years ago, but there are more floating around on YouTube these days. Most have English subtitles.

List:

Eternal Heart (1929)
Seven Seas: Virginity Chapter (1931)
Seven Seas: Chastity Chapter (1932)
A Woman Crying in Spring (1933)
Japanese Girls at the Harbor (1933)
Hero of Tokyo (1935)
Mr. Thank You (1936)
Forget Love For Now (1937)
Children in the Wind (1937)
The Masseurs and a Woman (1938)
Four Seasons of Children (1939)
Ornamental Hairpin (1941)
----------
Song of the White Orchid (1939)
China Nights (1940)
Sayon's Bell (1943)
----------
Children of the Beehive (1948)
Dancing Girls (1957)


There are more available than that, but as I said before I curated this list so it wouldn't include lesser rated sidetracks and digressions. I'm all about that creative ebb and flow.

Eternal Heart is his earliest surviving film, I watched this on Saturday night and it was absolutely dreadful. Very heavy handed soap opera melodrama. To be fair, it's early Shimizu, that's what I expect. Everyone has to start somewhere. Tonight and tomorrow night I'm watching Seven Seas Chastity and Virginity chapters, hoping to find some progression. These are all on YouTube by the way.

A Woman Crying in Spring
-his first sound film

Japanese Girls at the Harbor
-considered his best silent film and one of the seminal films of early Japanese cinema


After that first crescendo, there are the Michiko Kuwano films: Hero of Tokyo, Mr. Thank You, and Forget Love for Now. In case you didn't know, Michiko Kuwano is my 1930s Japanese movie star crush.




If Setsuko Hara was Ozu's creative muse, then maybe Michiko Kuwano was Shimizu's at the peak of his career. She was also fantastic as the modern niece who got her uncle into marital trouble by taking him to a geisha house in Ozu's very funny comedy What Did the Lady Forget? I'd highly recommend that one as well.


Children in the Wind
The Masseurs and a Woman
Four Seasons of Children

These are the higher rated -- what you might call plateau films -- from the second Criterion box-set. There's another one called Nobuko (1940) that I've seen described as Abbas Kiarostami meets Mädchen in Uniform (1931) which I haven't decided if I want to watch yet or not, but if you're into lesbian school girl flicks with lateral tracking shots and Shimizu's typical country road scenes, then maybe check that one out too sometime.

Ornamental Hairpin
-his last pre-war film, considered one of his two or three best


Then there's the wartime propaganda films. He only directed Sayon's Bell, starring the inimitable Shirley Yamaguchi (as Ri Koran), but since that's the end of a trio of Chinese and Japanese propaganda films she's most remembered for from around that time period, I'm going to watch all three. I'll leave it to Phat Mack to remind you all how great Shirley Yamaguchi was.


Children of the Beehive




Finally there's Shimizu's lone postwar masterpiece Children of the Beehive, which is also his highest rated film. Children features ten war orphans who follow around a Japanese soldier as he returns home looking for work amid the hellscape aftermath of postwar Japan. The soldier actually rescues them from black market labor and then tries to lead them to the orphanage where he grew up.

I wonder if it will be anything like Hiroshima meets Oliver Twist.


More on Shimizu:





There's one other movie from the end of Shimizu's career called Dancing Girls, starring Machiko Kyo and Chikage Awashima, kinda like a 1950s Showgirls but with two of the most beautiful 30-something mature actresses of the Japanese Golden Age cinema. Can't find that one yet, but if I have to finish with Children of the Beehive, that's also a fine place to end.

Last edited by Shuffle; 06-22-2021 at 03:54 AM.
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