Sci-Fi, Shochiku Style

On the Cultural Gutter, I’m writing about apocalyptic scifi and horror from the normally well-behaved Japanese film studio Shochiku. Shochiku was most closely identified with shomin-geki, dramas about the lives of everyday people, and the undisputed master of such films was Shochiku director Yasujiro Ozu. But a studio can only exist for so long onContinue reading “Sci-Fi, Shochiku Style”

Battles without Honor and Humanity II

I’ve been sitting here trying to think of an adequate way to describe exactly what it is that Sonny Chiba does and wears in this second film in Kinji Fukasaku’s highly enjoyable, highly influential Battles without Honor and Humanity series of films that delve into the world of organized crime and the role it playedContinue reading “Battles without Honor and Humanity II”

Nippon Girls: Japanese Pop, Beat &Bossa Nova 1966-70

Needless to say, if you want to reenact the dance contest scene from >Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster, Nippon Girls: Japanese Pop, Beat & Bossa Nova 1966-70 is the ideal soundtrack. Or perhaps it’s the swinging, strobe-lit nightclub from your favorite Pinky Violence film you want to recreate — you know, the type where MikiContinue reading “Nippon Girls: Japanese Pop, Beat &Bossa Nova 1966-70”