Starting on September 28, The Japan Society in New York will be running a monthly series of 8 classic Nikkatsu action films. The series will be curated by Mark Schilling, film reporter for The Japan Times, and Japan correspondent for Variety. Mr. Schilling, who selected the films, will be on hand to introduce the series and sign copies of his new book, “No Borders, No Limits: Nikkatsu Action Cinema.”
Before going all-erotica with its “Roman Porno” line of pink films, Nikkatsu cornered the market on tough guy gangster cinema with a tremendous run of low-budget, high-octane actioners. The films, many of which are being presented for the first time with English subtitles, include works by Toshio Masuda (perhaps better known in the West for his later anime work like Space Battleship Yamato and the Japanese sequences in Tora, Tora, Tora), Yasuharu Hasebe (the Stray Cat Rock series and the overrated Black Tight Killers), Koreyoshi Kurahara (Black Sun), Buichi Saito (Lone Wolf and Cub 4), and Takashi Nomura, many of them starring chipmunk-cheeked favorite Jo Shishido (Branded to Kill). Toshio Masuda in particular has a reputation among Japanese film scholars as a leading influence on Japanese action cinema of the ’60s - a man from even Seijun Suzuki took lessons.
It’s been an exciting couple of years for fans of 60s and 70s Japanese action and exploitation cinema, with DVD companies like Criterion, Panik House, Synapse and Discotek releasing a steady stream of Seijun Suzuki, Kinji Fukasaku, Teruo Ishii and Pinky Violence films, and it just got more exciting.
More detailed information on the screenings and schedule from the press release follows below:
Filed under: Movie News and Movie News: Japan and Book News and Film Festivals: News and People: Jo Shishido and Venues: The Japan Society