And so we come to the second part of the great blog crossover. My Appreciation Club: Expositions have kindly done us a little review of Kazuaki Kiriya’s Casshern. I’ll ‘fess up – I have not seen this film, it has been in my must-see pile for longer than I care to admit to – it came to my attention before I fell back in love with Asian Cinema, and just never rose to the top again. Which is odd as I am a huge fan of his Goemon, which I wrote about here. He is also the ex-husband of Japanese superstar Hikaru Utada, for whom he directed several music videos. Go YouTube them if you are interested. Anyway, over to MAC:E (Note I have edited the format to fit with the ThingsFallApart style, but none of the words. If you like what you see, go check MAC:E out, just make sure I tell them I sent you. Unless you are going to be mean. Then I have never heard of you!).
Well hello readers of Things Fall Apart. I discovered this site not long ago and was very impressed with the reviews/opinions on here. At our site My Appreciation Club: Expositions we pride ourselves on writing about things that people maybe haven’t heard of or don’t know a lot about, with the occasional guilty pleasure and rant.
So it was a bit of an natural choice that a writer as good as Things Fall Apart, would fit our site so well that we had send a Guest Post invitation. We asked for a topic of passion, and we got a good dose of Asian cinema..and we loved it.
We are furiously tracking down Uzamaki as we speak. The team has an eye on a copy on ebay but I am not linking you in because one of you will snipe us, that’s going be our staff film night’s highlight.
Well now what we have a treat for you as Things Fall Apart kindly gave us one. This is about an incredible Asian cinematic gem, and in very much the same way as Uzamaki it may have some points that you frown at but this is such a stunningly beautiful film that it hardly matters. If you are used to the spell binding visuals of Hollywood and are amazed with films like Sucker Punch or Watchmen then for cinematography style and originality look no further than Casshern.
Originally a series of Anime original released in 1973 by Tatsunoko Productions , Casshern or Neo-Human Casshern as it truly titled tells the story of an android with a Human consciousness, Tetsuya Azuma. Tetsuya purposefully turns him self into an android to fight the plague of robot that have taken over the world. The robots in question have been created by the first android BK-1 originally created by Tetsuya aka Casshern’s father the android BK-1 then renames itself Buraiking Boss or burai, (meaning Rogue.)
I bet you are thinking why have we just given you so much information on this. Well the film doesn’t exactly follow the original story. It rather takes it as the basis for what can be described many way we are going to opt for this: Better than naked rocket fuelled bike ride, up mount Everest only discover that the mountain was is a ramp designed to launch you to space!
The convoluted story line combined with frantic visual style changes, computer aided stylisation and flourishes of colouring worthy of a painting is simple a divine experience to view. I would recommend watching it more than once due to the visual experience sometimes the subtly of the story can be missed.
The director of this film Kazuaki Kiriya is quite a well know music video director, making a few video’s for the Japanese rock band The Back Horn. His stylisation and impressive visual styles have carried on and seemingly improved with his career, I would suggest watching Casshern first and the simply watching the trailer for his latest film Goemon (2009). Which we also have sitting in watching on ebay as it looks like a style explosion and is based on the life of Ishikawa Goemon, who is effectively Japanese Robin Hood.