Just in time for Halloween, I present to you my list of ESSENTIAL JAPANESE HORROR CINEMA at City on Fire.
Stretching from the silent era into the age of CGI and found footage, Japanese horror cinema always has something surprising to shock and delight us with. From ghost girls and giant monsters, to psycho killers and mushroom people, there is something for everyone on this list. I also attempt to provide extra background on Japan's masters of horror, like directors Takashi Miike, Hideo Nakata, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, and Teruo Ishii.
The past month or so has been crazy. Three massive hurricanes struck Florida, Texas, and Puerto Rico. And while Texas and Florida are on the path to recovery, I've no doubt that many families in those states are still feeling the hurt from the storm. In Puerto Rico it's even worse -- the rescue and recovery mission has been unforgivably slow and it's become abundantly clear that the President of the United States simply does not care. Now, California is on fire, hundreds are still missing, and thousands of structures have been reduced to ash. And somewhere in the middle of all this heartbreak was a mass shooting that killed 58, wounded hundreds more, and is being hurriedly forgotten by certain members of the Congress and Senate.
It's been a bad 30+ days for America. And I want to help.
I will be donating 100% of my Kindle ebook royalties from the month of October to the Red Cross for disaster relief. I'm no JJ Watt, but this is what I can do.
And hey, it's October; most of my books are scary reads. So you're getting something out of it, too! My dark fantasy novel Death's Good Intentions is available for $1.99. The sequel to that book, The Greater Evil, is $2.99. Rakasa, my horror novella about a shipwrecked pirate, is $1.99. And my early novel, Brain Mold, is only $0.99.
If you'd like to donate to the Red Cross directly, you may follow this link.
Thank you for your time. And to the survivors, know that we've not forgotten you. Love y'all.
I'm kind of disappointed in myself that the last post on this here blog was my favorite films of August. But... well... September was just that kind of month for me.
Let's get on with it!
IT -- The most anticipated horror film of 2017. Hell, maybe it’s the most anticipated horror film of the past decade, I’m not sure. All I know is expectations were high for this one. And for my part, the film largely met those expectations. It’s a dark, weird, stylish, funny little movie about a killer clown that has to terrify kids before he can eat them.
The discussion about whether or not IT is a horror film confuses me to no end. You should be able to watch any random 10 minutes of IT and be convinced you’re watching a horror film. But people are weird.
COLOSSAL -- Kaiju have previously represented nuclear weapons, pollution, war. Now... alcoholism and depression.
COLOSSAL is kind of amazing.
It may lay the 'messaging' on thick but it's also honest and tough. Fun, too. As a kaiju film fan and someone who's dealt with his own mental health issues, the film connected with me in some unexpected ways.
I really, really liked it.
THE BIG SICK -- A romantic comedy with heart. A Muslim stand-up comic falls for a girl that he knows his family wouldn't approve of. Shortly after their relationship ends, the girl gets sick and is placed in a medically induced coma, which brings our guy face-to-face with her family for the first time. It doesn't sound funny, but it's funny. And it's sad. And it's wonderful. I love the cast. Love the honesty and wit. Fantastic film.
NEW BATTLES WITHOUT HONOR AND HUMANITY 2: THE BOSS'S HEAD -- Following the brilliant Battles Without Honor and Humanity crime saga, director Kinji Fukasaku returned to create a trilogy of new films in the New Battles trilogy. I was a bit disappointed with the first New Battles film, and if writer Koji Takada’s account of things is correct, so was Fukasaku. The first film of the trilogy is a kinda-sorta follow-up to the original series that also played like a confusing recycling project. New Battles Without Honor and Humanity 2: The Boss’s Head avoids any of that confusion by telling a standalone story that feels, well, New. You can read my complete review of the film at City on Fire.
THE INVISIBLE MAN -- I'm taking part in Hoop-Tober, a horror-themed film challenge over at Letterboxd. It has me watching many horror films I skipped over. Recently it got me to check out the original Invisible Man with Claude Rains. This movie is sublime. Hilarious, too. What a wonderful madman Rains makes. I've only seen the movie once and I have more territory to cover, but I feel pretty good calling The Invisible Man one of Universal's best classic horror movies.
Writer of horror, science fiction, and dark fantasy. Lover of fiction and film. Lifelong Godzilla fan. Reluctant blogger.
Blog notice: mostly this blog is for sharing my thoughts and talking about my books. From time to time I will also comment on books, films, music, sports, and/or videogames. During these times I may use images of the creative works under discussion. I'm posting the images under the "fair use" allowance, for purposes such as criticism, comments, reporting, teaching, and research. If you have any issue with images used on this blog, please contact me and the images will be removed.
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