J- Horror and its american remakes

Michael McCaskey mccaskem
Sun Dec 3 14:37:58 EST 2006

Dear Stefanie,

I know a little about such remakes, though I'm quite remiss in organizing this knowledge, so I do not have any really systematic suggestions.

But first, I'd suggest you go look at


They have pretty decent reviews of most Japanese horror films that have reached the European market--quite a lot. It's not a bad place to browse for basic information, and maybe identify more films you'd like to include in your study.

I recently read that Walter Salles, who also directed "Central Station," "Motorcycle Diaries," etc., is regarded by some as the director who made one of the most "original" remakes, his "Americanized" version of "Dark Water."

There is also now one more book about Japanese horror films in English. I'll look it up and send the name along shortly.

Also, the US DVD of the "Pulse" remake is just coming out here--but the European Region 2 DVD may or may not be out soon, or may already be out.

Best Regards,

Michael McCaskey
Georgetown University

----- Original Message -----
From: stefanie simon <stefanie.simon at gmx.at>
Date: Sunday, December 3, 2006 8:42 am
Subject: J- Horror and its american remakes

> Hello!
> My name is Stefanie and I'm a student in Vienna, just writing on 
> my degree
> dissertation. I got this mailing list from a friend who told me, 
> that you
> could help me to solve a few problems concerning my writings.
> First of all, I want you to explain my subject: I'm making an 
> empiric study
> about the Japanese horror films "The Ring", "The Grudge" and "Dark 
> Water"and am comparing them with their American remakes. In my 
> film analyses I
> want to look how much of the Japanese tradition can be found in 
> their films,
> and how the Americans deal with this different tradition in their 
> remake.I'm also interested in finding formal differences like the 
> proportionbetween image and sound, the shot sizes., but also in 
> exploring the
> different use of music, dialogue and silence, the different 
> presentation of
> the characters in the films especially of the female part, the 
> presentationof the ghosts, the tradition of uchi/soto, family 
> system and so on.
> I hope I could explain it good enough, so you can understand the 
> subject of
> my degree dissertation. Now why I am writing to you is, that I 
> hope that you
> can help me in finding some literature to these different parts of 
> my work.
> It's very hard for example to find something about the Japanese 
> film in
> Vienna, but more different is finding something about the Japanese 
> horrorfilm in special. Although I need for my theoretical part a 
> short history of
> the Japanese horror film. You might have some titles of books, 
> which could
> help me out of this problem. I only have "The Japanese horror 
> cinema" from
> Jay McRoy, its good, but unfortunately not enough. What I also 
> need are
> books about specifics of the Japanese society for example the use of
> silence, symbols and the difference between the tight social rules 
> and the
> detonation of these rules in films like those of the horror genre. 
> Theremight also be books about new influences on the Japanese 
> society, especially
> for the youth,  that mix up with the existing tradition.
> You might also have some advice for me, where I can find 
> differences between
> the Japanese horror films and its remakes furthermore. 
> I would be very thankful if you could help me with your advices and
> knowledge in this topic. I'm happy to have the opportunity to 
> write my
> concern to you. 
> Thank you for reading this mail and I wish you a nice day.
> Respectfully, 
> Stefanie Simon.

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