Tag Archives: Japan

Go Get ‘Em! Geek Girls, Documentary Review

18 Mar

Upcoming Shows:
AUSTRALIA –
Demand Film
March 19-April 9, 6:30pm

CANADA, WINNIPEG –
Winnipeg Cinematheque
March 21-25 & 29

UK, LEEDS –
Left Bank Leeds
March 29, 8pm

BELGIUM, BRUSSELS –
Millenium Documentary Film Festival
March 21, 7pm & March 25, 5pm

Geek Girls is a documentary by filmmaker Gina Hara (Your Place or Minecraft), chronicling her journey on why life as a female nerd is tough. A brief background about her childhood explains her motivations, and to see her interview other women (11 in total) who have found occupations by keeping true to themselves is inspiring no matter what the gender. This 80-minute production looks at how nerdom is a badge of honour instead of a sign of shame.

Sometimes the gender issue is not always in focus, as nearly every child played with dolls (Barbie, Transformers and GI Joe all belong in the same category), read comics, traded baseball cards or played some kind of video game. The labelling happened when peers in high school knew these secrets. Though back then, etymologists will note the words nerd and geek meant different things. The modern definition is more synonymous, and with this work, looks at these ladies deal against so-called societal norms.

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The Continuity is Askew with Stitch and Ai, and that’s OK…

12 Mar

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Blink, and not every fan of Disney‘s Lilo & Stitch series will realize this spunky alien is still lurking about in Asia! His adventures in Japan started in 2008 and lasted for three seasons. One-off specials continued his adventures and Stitch! Perfect Memory (2015) suggests there are more adventures to come in space.

Since then, instead of going forward, a look back puts this cuddly alien in China. Central to this series is the importance of family. This latest entry nicely looks at it through a different cultural lens. According to online information, Stitch & Ai (安玲与史迪奇) takes place before he landed in the Land of the Rising Sun.
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Please Serve More of Anthony Bourdain’s Hungry Ghosts #2 & Beyond

26 Feb

By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

  • Mild Spoiler Alert
  • Due on shelves Feb 28th

Anthony Bourdain‘s Hungry Ghosts is getting even more sinister with issue #2. Due to hit shelves this week, this continuation offers even darker delights in two stories certain to fright. The opening narrative is limited to a page so more of the tales within a story is offered. I find the artwork is becoming more sinister, especially in how Leonardo Manco instilled the frights in “Salty Horse.” The Nightmare is a favourite monster of mine (whether that’s in Dungeons and Dragons or Magic the Gathering).

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You Don’t Have to Ride a Dark Horse to run away from, er read Hungry Ghosts!

27 Jan

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

  • Mild spoiler alert

Author and chef, Anthony Bourdain (Kitchen Confidential) and novelist Joel Rose are back with more culinary shenanigans in Hungry Ghosts. They wrote Get Jiro!, a send-up about food culture for DC/Vertigo six years ago and their play on words with this new title (published by Dark Horse Comics) is not a send-up on the traditional meaning, where ancestral spirits are forgotten by future generations.  With this new work, veneration is explored in a different sense.

On a dark, haunted night, Mr. Fedachenko, a Russian oligarch dares a circle of Michelin star international chefs to play the samurai game of 100 Candles—where each storyteller has to tell a terrifying tale. Each of them better pray they can survive the challenge. This game is not like Russian Roulette. Instead, it’s a test of courage and perhaps a means to summon the undead. By the time the last candle is blown out, the hope nothing demonic is present.

Issue #1 is due to hit stands January 31st. In my preview, I was salivating over the modern delights of this retelling and modernization of supernatural lore from Japan. I find this culture’s — and my own (China) — take on the paranormal far more phantasmagorical than their Western cousins. Nothing against Europe and the gothic tradition, but in Asia, the often colourful and misty backdrop makes for a far more worrisome world for mortals to live in. In Japan, this world is revered. In Europe, it was often feared.

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