The Japanese filmmaker’s international profile has skyrocketed over the past year thanks to his new films Drive My Car and Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy, both of which are now hitting theaters.
Ren Scateni is a writer, curator, and programmer. They mostly write about the cinema of Japan and other East Asian countries for various publications, including MUBI Notebook, Art Review, and Sight & Sound.
In 1940s Japan, a Trophy Wife Becomes a Spy
In Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s Wife of a Spy, a woman becomes embroiled in exposing Japanese war crimes in Manchuria.
Hong Sang-soo’s Latest Film Probes How People Portray Themselves
The Woman Who Ran has a laid-back vibe and relaxingly repetitious structure, but that conceals a complex character study.
The Japanese Town That’s Been Fighting Industrial Pollution for Decades
MINAMATA Mandala, the latest documentary by veteran filmmaker Kazuo Hara, captures the resilience of people left behind by their government.
A First-Person Interrogation of a Family’s Guilt-Ridden Past
A combination video essay and road movie, Angelo Madsen Minax’s documentary North By Current understands life upheavals as rites of passage.
A Female Vision of Sci-Fi
Izumi Suzuki introduced a different vision of femininity, one that departed from the stereotypes so abundant in the work of male writers.
Observing a Changing Wuhan Along the Banks of the Yangtze
Hyperallergic talks to Wuhan native Shengze Zhu about her new documentary A River Runs, Turns, Erases, Replaces, which recently premiered at Berlinale.
The Women Directors Reshaping Japan’s Film Industry
Beyond showcasing a wide range of styles and genres, 21st Century Japan also includes some of the country’s most remarkable contemporary women filmmakers.
Celebrating the Creativity, Comradery, and Activism of Japan’s Queer Community
The documentary Queer Japan talks to LGBTQ+ people all over the country.
Our Favorite Experimental Films From the Toronto International Film Festival
Highlights included Ephraim Asili’s striking debut feature The Inheritance and Nicolás Pereda’s Fauna, an inventive story within a story.
Our Top Picks for the 2020 Toronto International Film Festival
Highlights to catch at its first virtual edition include Spike Lee’s David Byrne documentary, a strong slate of Indigenous-led films, and a look at the FBI’s efforts to defame Martin Luther King Jr.
Celebrating the “Wild Ladies” of Japanese Folklore
Aoko Matsuda’s Where the Wild Ladies Are offers a fresh critique of Japan’s stance towards women.