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Third Window Films


Japan is home to the weird, the wonderful and the worrying. It’s probably no surprise that such a traditionally rigid and regimented society has proved to be a catalyst for some of the most creative and audacious art. When it comes to the extreme and the imaginative, very few directors can match Shinya Tsukamoto. Most …

From the outside, it can seem like cinema and television in Japan are dominated by samurais, Manga adaptations, limp romantic comedies and period dramas. However, there’s a weird and often wonderful independent cinema industry lurking just out of sight. It has produced some great films like The Taste of Tea, Fish Story, Hula Girls and …

Film-making is a strange vocation. Unlike music, where your first album is often the culmination of a lifetimes’ work, directors can make film after film before bringing their pet project to fruition. It can become an obsession, which consumes and sometimes defeats. More often than not the end result is a disappointment. Terry Gilliam’s attempt …

It’s all too easy to be overly critical and forget how incredibly difficult it is to make a feature film. How much time and effort is invested by a whole host of people to make it happen. The venture itself is a mammoth task with so many risks, dependencies and critical success factors that it’s …

Today, streaming has become the norm and is beginning to challenge the mainstream cinematic experience. Whilst this creates a problem by preventing audiences seeing a film as the director intended, in a cinema, it affords those films excluded from theatrical releases a chance. In many ways it’s history repeating. Straight-to-video is now straight-to-stream. In Japan, …

Sion Sono must be one of the hardest working directors currently ploughing his own unique and occasionally unwanted furrow in Japanese cinema. His films are usually, without fail, loud, brash, confrontational and unsettling. He revels in bright colours, bloodshed and a taste for the perverse. All these factors make his new film so unexpected and …

You can probably count the number of genuinely good remakes which are better than the originals on the digits of two hands. It’s safe to say that they’re mostly reinterpretations of old films (The Thing, The Man Who Knew Too Much, The Maltese Falcon, Little Shop of Horrors etc). This is precisely what Shin’ya Tsukamoto …

Takeshi Kitano is one of the most famous faces in Japan. Actor, director, screenwriter, author, comedian and TV personality, he’s a man of many talents. Whilst violent films such as Hana-bi, Violent Cop and Sonatine made his name as a director, it is perhaps more considered outings like Dolls and Kikujiro where he excels. Scene …

Japanese culture, as you probably already know, is distinct and often puzzling. They’re a nation who like pigeon-holing and almost everything you can possibly think of sits neatly into one category or another. One much-loved genre is that trodden by the likes of Godzilla, Gamera and Astro Boy. Tokusatsu encompasses TV and Films which rely …

As The Artist proved, cinema audiences have a thirst for film nostalgia. The golden days of Hollywood may be long gone but the memories of the great films and film stars continue to prevail within popular culture. The same can be said for Japanese cinema. Whilst the nature of film-making in the Rising Sun may …