In less than two months, we reviewed two different Takashi Miike films. This came after last year’s review of Hara-Kiri — which is starting to open in the United States — and all of those will only precede a rundown of his next outing, Lesson of the Evil, later this year. My point being, this is a guy who makes everyone around him look lazy — if, as our reviews indicate, not always bad.
Next up, according to Variety, is Shield of Straw, which has found its leads in Takao Osawa, Nanako Matsushima (Ringu), and Tatsuya Fujiwara (Battle Royale, Death Note). Here, Miike is adapting Kazuhiro Kiuchi‘s novel of the same name, wherein a couple of cops (Osawa and Matsushima) are commanded to take a killer (Fujiwara) across Japan. A simple task at first blush, but one which becomes problematic when the man’s grandfather puts a $12 million bounty on his head and, of course, some bounty hunters take notice.
I’d say “that sounds nothing like Miike‘s usual oeuvre,” but the guy has made so many damn movies I wouldn’t even risk making that mistake. Any aforementioned skepticism about his recent output notwithstanding, Shield of Straw‘s core concept is the kind of tale I’d never object to seeing unfold in a cinematic fashion; with a man of this stature telling it, we’re simply compelled to take note.
What are your impressions of Shield? Does Miike have something good on his hands?
One of the most highly anticipated films of the Cannes Film Festivals was unveiled this morning to a divisive response, Nicolas Winding Refn‘s Only God Forgives. As we said in our review, “set amidst an underground Muay Thai boxing club and glowing with hellish red lights from countless brothels, the mood and style is more [...]
With this year’s Cannes Film Festival halfway done, one of the clear highlights is Coens‘ 1960′s-set folk music tale Inside Llewyn Davis. Profiling a down on his luck musician (Oscar Isaac), whose natural talent indicates he is destined for success, the film is a vivid portrait of what it means to be a starving artist. In [...]
Welcome to the latest episode of our official podcast, The Film Stage Show. This week, staff writer Danny King, associate editor Nick Newman and I review J.J. Abram‘s new entry in his flagship franchise, Star Trek Into Darkness. Before that, though, we run down our top 3 most-anticipated films of the Cannes Film Festival. Finally, we take a look at the [...]
There is truly something magical when you combine the French Riviera, the global film market and thousands of hungry filmgoers and critics. The end result is what has come to be known as the most prestigious film festival in the world, the Cannes Film Festival, currently in its 66th iteration. This is my third year [...]
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