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Kôji Wakamatsu 1936 – 2012

The great Japanese pinku-political filmmaker has died after being hit by a car in Tokyo.

The names that have left us just keep coming over the last week. Word has reached us that the great Japanese director Kôji Wakamatsu has died after being hit by a taxi in Tokyo. 2012 has been a banner year for the filmmaker, who saw three new features released, including one at Cannes (11/25 The Day Mishima Chose His Fate, our review) and one at Venice (The Millennial Rapture).

This is terribly sad news. RIP :-(
Thank you and goodnight, Koji-san! :(
This is truly fucked up. He was one of the greatest. Rest in peace!
Your films will stay with us forever, Koji sama.
Terrible news.
This is such sad news, especially since one of the greatest filmmakers Japan has ever produced has only been belatedly and rightfully celebrated these past few years. He’s right up there with Mizoguchi, Ozu, Naruse, Kurosawa, and Miike.
This is sad news indeed. Especially, as Nicole B has pointed out, he was definitely enjoying a career resurgence. In my opinion UNITED RED ARMY and CATERPILLAR are two of the best films to be released in the last five years. He will be truly missed.
Yes, very sad. As you guys said, precisely he was exploring and looking for different paths. He was feeling more alive and prolific in the last four years than many directors at his age and even than younger ones.
“It’s criminal to shoot from a powerful point of view.” RIP Sensei
Wow, has this year been harsh for grand old masters…
Funny that it is seldom mentioned : 1) getting hit by a taxi in Tokyo is about as common as a white alligator in a NYC sewer. The Tokyo taxis drive slow – not at all like NYC – and the driver opens/closes the door for you… no jumping in/out sudden stops/starts. So it is strange but it gets stranger when you know that… 2) Wakamatsu was working on a film project based on TEPCO and its corrupt machinations. Go figure.

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