In 2002, David Cronenberg’s SPIDER, which airs this Friday, seemed like a departure for the director. He was known primarily as a genre expert – one who had taken standard horror and thriller motifs and turned them into very personal expressions of post-modern unease in films like his remake of THE FLY and his adaptation of Stephen King’s THE DEAD ZONE. (Even his masterpiece DEAD RINGERS, though ostensibly a more serious film, was at heart a monster movie about twin gynecologists whose wild beliefs about the body and human nature resulted in their horrific deeds.) Although the director had made some forays into more “respectable” literature along the way, SPIDER felt different. And it was. It was also a harbinger of things to come.
Every week there are dozens of film news stories. We read them all and bring you the five most important ones in the single most important blog post you’ll ever read (today [at this moment]). This week: dreams, festivals, raids and teen idols.
Every week there are dozens of film news stories. Every week, we read them all and bring you the five most important ones in the single most important blog post you’ll ever read (today [at this moment]). This week: SXSW hands out some awards, Kevin Smith tries releasing other filmmakers’ movies via SModified distribution, and David Cronenberg tries TV.
If one were to survey Japanese films that have been distributed in America over the last thirty to forty years, certain patterns would form. Works from the great masters, historical epics, dramas, monster movies and of course horror have certainly been well represented for decades. But one genre that’s severely lacking is comedy. In 1985, Juzo Itami’s noodle-western TAMPOPO became a smash hit, playing to sell-out crowds for months. However, since that time there haven’t been many Japanese comedies to find their way into the cultural zeitgeist, but that’s not for lack of material.