Can't get enough of Sword Fighting Men, starting in December 2009 and running until May 2010, the Japan Society in New York is featuring The Double Edged Sword: The Chambara Films of Shintaro Katsu & Raizo Ichikawa as part of their Monthly Film series.
The series opened on December 11 with Samurai Vendetta: A Chronicle of Pale Cherry Blossoms.
The Japan Society tells us why Chambara movies will be hip in 2010 and the films to be shown in the coming month:
Two actors, two styles, apparently poles apart yet actually complementary: earthy Katsu was the affable anti-idol rogue, unpredictable on- and off-screen, while ethereal, coolly enigmatic Ichikawa was considered the “James Dean of Japan”. Beyond their differences, both stars instilled in their roles a poisonous poetry and existential angst that lifted their art into genre-transcending territory."
Next film to be shown on Friday, January 22 (2010) at 7:30 PM is Zatoichi, the Fugitive (1963, image below, © Kadokawa Pictures, Inc.)
Double Edge Sword is curated by Chris D. author of Outlaw Masters of Japanese Film (cover below).
I did not make the connection until I started digging with the Chris D (Chris DesJardins) of X and Flesh Eaters punk fame.
Scott Foutz wrote a detailed review (on SaruDama, 2008) of Outlaw Masters.
Eager to learn more about the Chambara film genre, visit Chambara a fan site.
Getting the adrenaline flowing for Tokyo Thursdays # 118
Previously: Reading Keitai Novels or Virtual Toilet Flushing, Mobile Phone Uses in Japan