1998 KineJun Best 10

stephen cremin asianfilmlibrary
Thu Jan 7 22:24:14 EST 1999

I think Mark Schilling's perception of the "humanistic" strand to the 
list is important.  After seeing "Begging For Love" (Ai o Kou Hito), I 
asked several Japanese critics and directors for their opinions.  I 
found a very strong split between the "humanists" (Enokido Koji, etc) 
who loved it and the "independents" (Nishimura Takashi, etc) who 
absolutely hated it.  And perhaps they do represent the two acceptable 
modes of thinking for appraising Japanese film, at least for KineJun's 
pool of critics.  (I hope this doesn't resonate as the "there are no 
film critics in Japan" argument made by some international 

As Mark suggests, no room for animation sans Miyazaki ("PERFECT BLUE" 
deserves a nod for sheer ambition, as did "AKIRA" a decade ago) or 
"Odoru Daisosasen" which I think has less to do with its TV 
credentials than its teen popularity.  Perhaps there should be two 
votes: one secret, one public.  Critics are a little too aware that 
there judgements will be made so public in the February issue.  It was 
very strange to see the amount of coverage given to "Odoru" in Kinema 
Junpo in the months leading up to its release, given that the 
readership is now, I'm told, largely middle-aged.  For a while I 
suspected that KineJun were co-producers.

Regarding the posting about Kurosawa Kiyoshi's "CURE" having screened 
at various festivals.  Yes, it has played Rotterdam, Edinburgh, San 
Francisco, Toronto, etc.  Sorry, it was "Give It All" (Ganbatte 
Ikimasshoi) that I was suggesting festival directors on the list take 
a look at.  Sorry for my ambiguous English.  I keep a chart indicating 
which Japanese films have played at which international festivals: I 
should update and post to the list at some point, as there are 
interesting patterns.

If any festival directors do decide to pick up "Give It All" can I 
suggest they arrange a concert for Lee Sang-Eun, Korea's best singer-
songwriter who appears very prominently on the movie soundtrack, her 
film "debut".  Its certainly on my mind if I get enough money together 
for my festival in June.

Stephen Cremin
The Asian Film Library
[London Pan-Asian Film Festival]


Get Your Private, Free Email at http://www.hotmail.com

More information about the KineJapan mailing list