Well-written Movie Reviews of Chinese and Japanese Cinema

Alexander Jacoby a_p_jacoby
Fri Feb 23 22:13:14 EST 2007

Those suggestions are fine, but if you're interested in reviews by people who aren't actually Japanese specialists, one which I read recently and thought was a model of a well-written, expressive, concise journalistic is Vincent Canby's of Comic Magazine by Yojiro Takita. You can check it out on the New York Times website. In fact, may of the NYT reviews of Japanese films are rather interesting, often for having unfashionable points of view about canonical films!
  I'd also put in a word for Vernon Young, whose reviews have been collected. He often addressed Japanese cinema, though perhaps more often in the form of articles talking about several films than in reviews of individual films. He has very eccentric opinions which will either cause you to be delighted on infuriated. But he writes beautifully.

batgirl at tkb.att.ne.jp wrote:
  Dear Bruce,

The reviews by Mark Schilling and KineJapan's own Aaron Gerow come to 
mind right away. And how about Midnight Eye?

Best wishes,

Sarah Teasley

Sarah Teasley / steasley at umassd.edu
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth

On 2007/02/23, at 18:19, Bruce Baird wrote:

> Dear Colleagues,
> My question is overly broad, I know, but I have done much more reading 
> of academic articles on movies, than of reviews of movies (other than 
> the ones that are included in the Kurosawa volume), so I am coming to 
> this list for help, on the assumption that there are those of you who 
> have also read a lot of movie reviews, and can make good suggestions.
> I am teaching a writing class which is supposed to focus on writing 
> specific to our Chinese and Japanese majors, so I thought that they 
> should write a movie review.  (Of course, they will also have to do 
> other kinds of writing such as a research project as well, but that is 
> later in the semester.)  Thus, I am looking for well written movie 
> reviews (in English) about Chinese and Japanese films.  They don't 
> necessarily have to be from a person who has a great background in 
> Asian Studies so Denby or Kael, or anyone like that is quite 
> acceptable, but obviously if there are people who write well who also 
> have an extensive background, that would be great too.  (We have 
> already used Donald Richie for a travel article, so although he writes 
> well and has extensive knowledge of Japan, I am reluctant to have them 
> read more of his prose.)  I also would like a variety of tones.  While 
> I was at UCLA, I used to read reviews from someone who reviewed for 
> the LA Weekly or the Village View who always had such a pleasantly 
> acerbic scathing tone to her/his pans, but I don't remember who it 
> was. (I suppose this is a way of saying I welcome reviews panning 
> asian cinema as well as praising it.)
> Any suggestions?  
> Best,
> Bruce
> Bruce Baird
> Assistant Professor
> Asian Languages and Literatures
> University of Massachusetts Amherst
> But?, Japanese Theater, Intellectual History
> 717 Herter Hall
> 161 Presidents Drive
> University of Massachusetts Amherst
> Amherst, MA 01003-9312
> Phone: 413-577-4992
> Fax: 413-545-4975
> baird at asianlan.umass.edu

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