In a rare attempt to truly match the half-remembered weirdness of our dreams, this phantasmagorical collection features ten absurd, nightmarish, and hilarious shorts. –NYFF
Born on November 20, 1915, in Ujiyamada, Mie Prefecture, Ichikawa first gained western recognition during the 1950s and 60s with several bleak films, particularly two acclaimed antiwar films, The Burmese Harp and Fires on the Plain.
Ichikawa began his career as a cartoonist, and collaborated with his wife, screenwriter Natto WADA, until 1965. His films are generally regarded as dark and bleak, interspersed with sparks of humanity, and he often intertwines comedy and tragedy within the same story. He also has a flair for technical expertise, irony, detachment, and a drive for realism across all genres. After Akira KUROSAWA’s departure, no other Japanese director has come close to Ichikawa’s level of recognition, the power of his films, and commercial success.
Ichikawa passed away on February 13, 2008. At age 91 (2006), he was still active as a director, completing a feature-length film, The Inugamis, and directing one segment of the Japanese fantasy, Ten Nights of Dream… read more
Akio Jissoji (実相寺昭雄 Jissōji Akio?) (March 29, 1937, Tokyo – November 29, 2006, Tokyo) was a Japanese TV and film director best known outside of Japan for the 1960s TV series Ultraman and Ultra Seven, as well as for his auteur erotic ATG-produced Buddhist trilogy Mujō (無常)—Mandala (曼陀羅)—Uta (哥).
He was also known for his film adaptations of Japanese horror author, Rampo Edogawa. Jissoji possessed a very distinctive visual style that was notable even in Japanese cinema which is known internationally for its visual style. Every project he directed, from children’s action shows to the most disturbing adult films had an uncompromising approach to cinematic story telling. His episodes of the Ultraman TV shows are unique and quite unusual for children’s television. His career is also unusual in that he went back and forth from children’s television to film projects that were sexually provocative in some way or another. It’s perhaps this aspect of his work that has prevented wider distribution… read more
Suzuki Matsuo is a Japanese actor, director, and screenwriter. He was born on December 15, 1962 in Kitakyushu, Fukuoka Prefecture.
Miwa Nishikawa (西川美和 Nishikawa Miwa?, born July 8, 1974 in Asaminami-ku, Hiroshima) is a Japanese director. Hirokazu Koreeda produced her feature film Wild Berries (2002) after she worked as an assistant director on his Distance. She was given the Best New Director award at the 2004 Yokohama Film Festival for her film Hebi ichigo. —Wikipedia
Japanese director Takashi Shimizu’s first experience in film was working part-time at a Kyoto movie theater, while writing scripts in his spare time. Several years of freelancing as an assistant director followed and in 1997 he enrolled at the Film School of Tokyo.
A short film project he did for school attracted the attention of director Kyoshi Kurosawa and screenwriter Hiroshi Takashi. They introduced him to producer Taka Ichise, who had been asked to produce a series of horror stories for a cell phone company. He asked the young director to give him some ideas of what might scare him and this process launched the beginning of the Ju-on horror movie series.
Four Japanese Ju-on movies later, Shimizu directed his first American-produced feature — The Grudge (2004), an English-language version of his hit film, Ju-on: The Grudge — starring Sarah Michelle Gellar as an American in Japan.
Shimizu won a Crystal Skull Award at Screamfest for Ju-on: The Grudge (2003). —tribute… read more
Nobuhiro Yamashita (山下敦弘 Yamashita Nobuhiro?, born 29 August 1976) is a Japanese film director. Born in Aichi Prefecture, Yamashita attended Osaka University of Arts where he worked on Kazuyoshi Kumakiri’s Kichiku Dai Enkai. His graduation film Hazy Life, took the Off Theatre Competition Grand Prize at the 2000 Yubari International Fantastic Film Festival. He also won the award for Best Director at the 32nd Hochi Film Award in 2007 for A Gentle Breeze in the Village and The Matsugane Potshot Affair. He often works with the screenwriter Kōsuke Mukai. —Wikipedia