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The Golden Rock - December 8th, 2007 Edition

- It’s reviews time! Japan Times’ Mark Schilling looks at Yoshimitsu Morita’s remake of Tsubaki Sanjuro, which he says passes the grade, though Kurosawa did it better. Twitch’s Todd Brown reviews Makoto Shinkai’s 5 Centimeters Per Second, which I loved even when I saw the trailer. I might review this when I have the time.

I don’t know if it counts as a review, but Daily Yomiuri has a report about the hit Japanese teen romance Koizora, though it seems like a hybrid of a plot description and a film review. The fact that my girlfriend hated the original “cell phone novel” doesn’t seem promising to me.

- The Korea Export Insurance Corp. will apparently now offer partial compensation through an export insurance policy for films targeted at an international market and/or has secured pre-sale deals that flops. I assume D-War doesn’t need that insurance.

- Japanese short film Frank Kafka’s A Country Doctor by Koji Yamamura picks up the Grand Prize at the animation festival I Castelli Animati in Italy.

- This weekend in Japan is the first film festival to feature films made entirely on cell phones. I expect the whole festival either to be on very small screens or on big screens filled with pixelated images.

- Somewhat related is the Daily Yomiuri’s Wm Penn pointing out the importance of cell phones in Japanese dramas this past year, including rescue tool, romantic triangle symbol, and character coding device.

- According to the official website,  Stephen Chow’s latest CJ7 is opening in North America 2 weeks earlier than Hong Kong. I know they want to open it in time for Lunar New Year in Hong Kong, but what’s up with that?

- If you’re in Los Angeles, be sure to check out the Toho Festival, featuring old Japanese monster flicks 4 weeks in a row!

- Japan Times’ David McNeill has a 2-part feature on the slew of films looking at the Nanjing Massacre this year from Chinese, Japanese, and Western perspective. Too bad the only Japanese perspective one seems like it might be a right-wing nut job (Seeing how “Japanese people don’t mistreat corpses like that, it is not in our culture” isn’t exactly the best evidence against the massacre). Then again, it’s not like the Chinese ones are going to be completely fair either.

Stay reading for the blog’s live coverage of the Golden Horse Awards.

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