Monday, December 14, 2009
House is a japanese film directed by Nobuhiko Obayashi. The film was the feature-length directing debut for Obayashi, who based the film on an idea from his 7-year-old daughter. Before House, Obaysashi primarily directed television commercials (one of his earlier projects was a series of commercials for "Mandom" cologne featuring American actor Charles Bronson), which is reflected to a certain extent in the glossy directorial style of House.
In the hands of experimental Japanese filmmaker Nobuhiko Obayashi, the tale of seven “unmarried” young high-school girls who, during a school break, travel to a spooky, remote hilltop house to visit the reclusive, mysterious Aunt of one of their fold only to be consumed one at a time by the Ghost-House/Aunt in increasingly novel ways, is escalated into a spastic, phantasmagorical confetti burst of avant-garde techniques and tonalities. Not a minute goes by without some kind of imaginative and spirited experimental visual manipulation or interjection; from kaleidoscopic color schemes, to frame and time altering collage montage, to wild, high-concept mixed media integration (animation, mattes, props, sets, etc), to mini-movie injections (lovingly parodying/mimicking everything from silent film stylistics, to romantic fantasies to obligatory action scenes). Any and all workings of the film form are here incorporatedly warped; from imagery and editing to music and sound to content and presentation. Even the sketches of characters and their respective performances by the actors are hemmed in time with the overall off-the-wall configuration. (Example: Each girl is intentionally drawn with their stock personalities (the musician, the over-weight eater, the athlete, etc) novelly paraded in gleeful iconic irreverence.) The moods and tones of the film are equally melodic in their own discordant tangential way; seamlessly walking the line between comedy, horror and the deadpan aloof. It all adds up to a whole lot of fun. Where else could you see a girl eaten by a piano, an upright Bear having dinner at a roadside noodle-stand or a man turned into a pile of bananas because he doesn’t like melons? With all its packed in candy-colored confections and novel door prizes, “Hausu” is a cinematic surprise party all in one…just add you.
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01. mamono-tachi no yoru / Night of Demons 4:20
02. D fukkatsu / Resurrection of D 2:09
03. D zetsumei / Death of D 2:48
04. kyuuketsuki Lee hakushaku (toujou) / Earl Lee, the Vampire (Entrance) 4:15
05. kizoku no konrei / Marriage of Nobles 1:31
06. kyuuketsuki Lee hakushaku (shi) / Earl Lee, the Vampire (Death) 7:40
07. D no teema (toujou) / Theme of D (Entrance) 3:39
08. yakusoku (part I) / Promise (part I) 3:07
09. D no teema (Doris no ai) / Theme of D (Doris's Love) 3:22
10. Doris dakkai / Rescuing Doris 5:19
11. D no teema (wakare) / Theme of D (Parting) 3:26
12. yakusoku (part II) / Promise (part II) 3:10
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Quest is a visual spectacle written for the screen by Ray Bradbury and directed by Elaine & Saul Bass (yes, that Saul Bass - famous for creating the credit titles for such feature films as Man with the Golden Arm and Walk on the Wild Side) and released in 1983. It's a story of a race of people trapped on a strange planet where lack of sunlight and vegetation has reduced the life span to eight short days. From the children born to this doomed race, one child is selected to dispel the darkness. Following in the footsteps of others who have tried before, he must find and open a vast gate, letting in the "Light" which will bring peace and long life to his people.
Set in a garishly lighted, yet otherwise ambiguous future (better to show off Phillips “ambilight” technology), the film focuses on “006”, a beautiful female agent of “Central Authority: Human Sanitation Division”. She is put on the case of a notorious figure known as “Light”, for whom she must pose as a blind person in order to gain his trust. The charismatic Light has a deep affect on the agent, and tension is derived from that classic spy trope—has 006 gone too deep?
Wong Kar Wai works well with the limitations of the medium while staying within the boundaries of his well-traversed tropes. If ever the auteur theory applied to a filmmaker it is Wong, as each of his films simultaneously draws from, and enriches those which came before. There is Only One Sun is no different, as it treads the familiar territories of love, trust, memory and disconnect that we have seen in films such as 2046 and Ashes of Time. More...
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Directed by Mao Lamdo. This short features a robot walking through time, and the evoultion of man. The backdrop is animated with clouds that depicts various events of the universe. Such as the modernization of man, to the self destruction of man. Most the events in the backdrops takes place from Rome to present day society. Eventually the same angel who cries for his imortality, makes him human towards the end.