Sunday, August 19, 2012

Edo gangsters

Kabuki Meisakusen (Classic Selection): Shiranami Gonin Otoko Hamamatsuya kara Namerika Dobashi no Ba made / Kabuki

Sometime you just want to watch a classic. Not something high falutin', something well done but intended to be entertaining. Why not go for a classic. So I fixed my dinner and popped in the DVD for Shiranami Gonin Otoko. This has it, a complex con to get some cash from a merchant, deceptions within deceptions, a lost child found (two actually), a lost family treasure, thieves, a rooftop sword fight, great visuals and more than a few laughs.

These discs, region free by the way, are not cheap by US standards but not bad if you remember what foreign films used to cost. In this case it is a kabuki play, something you may be able to get a chance to see live in the US every decade or so if you can get to the few cities where a showing may be taking place, and if they are not sold out. CD Japan has the best prices I have seen online for these. Click on the picture to be taken to the DVD I am referring to. BTW while it does not have subtitles it does have a good voice over that allows you to watch the program and understand what is going on.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Spooky stuff to chill out to

Yesterday I walked into the Cartoon Art Museum store in San Francisco, it is just down the street from where I work so I often go there.

While wandering about looking at their manga and Japanese culture section I spotted a new book I have eagerly awaited for some time. Yurei Attack! The Japanese Ghost Survival Guide

This the latest of the "Attack" books by Hiroko Yoda and Matt Alt, the other two books in the series, Yokai Attack and Ninja Attack, are also out in new all color expanded editions from Tuttle. Do keep an eye out for these rather than getting the older Kodansha International editions.

Delighted with such fun spooky stuff I read part of the book on the commute home which put me in the mood for a good Edo Period ghost story movie. So when I got home I fixed dinner and sat down to watch Haunted Lantern [Otsuyu - Kaidan botan dourou]. It was a perfect choice, BTW Haunted Lantern is out of print and the link I have to it here is for a great price.

So sit yourself down, turn the rest of the lights in the house off, and enjoy a good book, perhaps followed by a movie.