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The Golden Rock at the 2011 Hong Kong Asian Film Festival - Day 3

This is the quiet beginning before HKAFF goes into full swing, so only one film once again today:

 

 tatsumi.jpg

 

Tatsumi (Singapore, 2011, Dir: Eric Khoo)

Singaporean director Eric Khoo pays a sentimental tribute to Japanese comic artist Yoshihiro Tatsumi, who led the way for adult-oriented comics, or “gekiga”. In addition to adapting his autobiographical graphic novel DRIFTING LIFE, TATSUMI also adapts five of the artist’s short stories. Some of them - the twisted noir piece HELL and the darkly comedic JUST A MAN - are delightfully twisted works filled with haunting imagery. However, some jarring editing and a lack of real insight into Tatsumi’s storytelling style make this sentimental tribute just a tribute more than a real attempt to understand the artist.

TATSUMI is clearly made by a fan, an admirer who doesn’t dare deviate much from what he loves about his idol. I came out having a generally positive impression of Tatsumi’s works, but I’m not sure if the film compelled me to look for more of them. Without that real insight into Tatsumi’s world (his life story - as narrated by Tatsumi himself - is straightforward with just one moment of the surrealism one would see in his work), TATSUMI is a sometimes beautiful piece of work that some may find difficult to connect to emotionally.

Tomorrow: DECISIVE MOMENT, and bonus track: DEVIL NAIL CLIPPER

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