With Dada Chen at NYAFF 2013

With Dada Chen at NYAFF 2013
With Dada Chen at NYAFF 2013

Saturday, August 13, 2011

ACF 1125: 49th New York Film Festival Masterworks Series Will Honor Nikkatsu Corporation

Image from Seijun Suzuki's Tokyo Drifter

The Film Society of Lincoln Center has announced an incredible Masterworks Series at this year's New York Film festival will focus on the Nikkatsu Corporation in anticipation of the 100th anniversary of its founding. The incredible line-up of films that will be screened is liisted below in alphabetical order. I haven't seen info about the specific schedule of days and times, although the festival will run from September 30th to October 16th, 2011. Film Society members and patrons will have the opportunity to buy advance and discount tickets to the festival. To enjoy these special benefits, join the Film Society by clicking here. Tickets go on sale to the general public on September 12th

I'll pass on schedule information as soon as I can. In the meanwhile, read the following and drool!!!!

Founded upon the consolidation of several production companies and theater chains, Nikkatsu Corporation has enjoyed a rich history of film production and distribution since 1912. Since that time, notable directors such as Kenji Mizoguchi, Kon Ichikawa, Shozo Makino and his son Masahiro Makino, Ko Nakahira, Shohei Imamura and Seijun Suzuki have made films under the Nikkatsu banner. During World War 2, Nikkatsu was forcibly combined with several other Japanese studios to form a large, government-influenced studio, but in 1954 the company resumed production under its own control.

Searching for its own niche in the booming postwar Japanese film industry, Nikkatsu moved into the youth market with its stirring screen adaptation of Shintaro Ishihara’s SEASON OF THE SUN. An enormous success, Nikkatsu quickly followed up with a wave of similar works oriented for the youth market. As the vogue for these youth films began to wane in the early 60s, Nikkatsu launched a series of hard-boiled action films that remain perhaps the company’s best known period internationally. Led by such action stars as Shishedo Joe, Yujiro Ishihara and Hideaki Nitani, Nikkatsu action introduced a new kind of protagonist, often cynical and at odds with a society revealed to be totally corrupt. Influenced by American B movies, Nikkatsu action would itself be a key influence on the Hong Kong gunplay films years later.

With aging action stars and a public looking for something new, Nikkatsu in the 70s created “Roman Porno,” romantic pornography, a series of soft-core erotic films that featured real (if often bizarre) plots and actors. The constant shift in production enabled Nikkatsu to stay profitable while other Japanese studios were either closing or switching to television. Yet by the 90s, Nikkkatsu was itself forced to declare bankruptcy and re-organize. Despite changes in ownership since then, Nikkatsu has remained continuously in production, branching out into new genre such as horror, martial arts and even family drama. As it approaches its centenary, Nikkatsu’s motto “We Make Fun Films” remains as true today as it was in its golden era. A new generation of filmgoers are discovering its classic films and filmmakers, inspiring not only the re-release of films from their catalogue but the production of remakes as well. Organized by the Film Society of Lincoln Center with Nikkatsu Corporation, the Japan Foundation and the National Film Center of Japan, this Centenary Celebration of Nikkatsu will be screened later this year at the Festival of 3 Continents in Nantes, France, as well as at the Cinematheque Fran├žaise.

Nikkatsu 100th Anniversary Retrospective Lineup:

Director: Mansaku Itami

THE BURMESE HARP(Biruma no Tategoto) (1956) 115min
Director: Kon Ichikawa

CHARISMA(Karisuma) (1999) 103min
Director: Kiyoshi Kurosawa

COLD FISH(Tsumetai Nettaigyo) (2010) 144min
Director: Sion Sono

A COLT IS MY PASSPORT(Colt ha Oreno Passport) (1967) 85min
Director: Takashi Nomura

CRAZED FRUIT(Kurutta Kajitsu) (1956) 86min
Director: Ko Nakahira

DANCER IN IZU(Izo no Odoriko) (1963) 87min
Director: Katsumi Nisikawa

A DIARY OF CHUJI’S TRAVELS(Chiji Tabi Nikki: Part 1 and Part 2) (1927) 107min
Director: Daisuke Ito

EARTH(1939) 92min
Director: Tomu Uchida

GATE OF FLESH(Nikutai no Mon) (1964) 90min
Director: Seijun Suzuki

THE HELL-FATED COURTESAN(Maruhi: Joro Seme Jigoku) (1973) 77min
Director: Noboru Tanaka

HOMETOWN(1930) 86min
Director: Kenji Mizoguchi

I LOOK UP WHEN I WALK(aka KEEP YOUR CHIN UP) (Uewo Muite Arukou) (1962) 91min
Director: Toshio Masuda

INTENTIONS OF MURDER(Akai Satsui) (1964) 150min
Director: Shohei Imamura

INTIMIDATION(Aru Kyohaku) (1960) 65min
Director: Koreyosji Kurahara

LOVE HOTEL(1985) 88min
Director: Shinji Somae

MADE TO ORDER CLOTH(aka JIROKICHI THE RAT) (Oatsurae Jirokichi Koshi) (1931) 70min
Director: Daisuke Ito
**Screening with:
JIRAIYA THE NINJA(Goketsu Jiraiya) (1921) 30min
Director: Shozo Makino

MUD AND SOLDIERS(Tsuchi to Heitai) (1936) 120min
Director: Tomotaka Tasaka

THE OLDEST PROFESSION(Maruhi: Shikiyo Mesu Ichiba) (1974) 83min
Director: Noboru Tanaka

PIGS AND BATTLESHIPS(Buta to Gunkan) (1961) 108min
Director: Shohei Imamura

A POT WORTH A MILLION RYO(Tange Sazen Hyakuman Ryou no Tsubo) (1935) 92min
Director: Sadao Yamanaka

RETALIATION(Shima ha Moratta) (1967) 94min
Director: Yasuharu Hasebe

RUSTY KNIFE(Sabita Knife) (1958) 90min
Director: Toshio Masuda

SEASON OF THE SUN(Taiyo no Kisetsu) (1956) 89min
Director: Takumi Furukawa

SINGING LOVE BIRDS(Oshidori Uta Gassen) (1936) 69min
Director: Masahiro Makino

STRAY CAT ROCK: SEX HUNTER(Noraneko Rock: Sex Hunter) (1970) 86min
Director: Yasuharu Hasebe

SUN IN THE LAST DAYS OF THE SHOGUNATE(aka Shinagawa Path) (Bakumatsu Taiyoden) (1957) 110min
Director: Yuzo Kawashima

SUZUKI PARADISE: RED LIGHT(Suzuki Paradise: Aka Shingo) (1956) 81min
Director: Yuzo Kawashima

TAKE AIM AT THE POLICE VAN(Jusango Taihisen Yori: Sono Gososha wo Nerae) (1960) 79min
Director: Seijun Suzuki

THE TATTOOED FLOWER VASE(Kashinno Irezumi: Ureta Tsubo) (1979) 74min
Director: Masaru Konuma

TEN NIGHTS OF DREAMS(Yume Juya) (2007) 110min
Director: Various

TILL WE MEET AGAIN(Ashita Kuru Hito) (1955) 115min
Director: Yuzo Kawashima

TOKYO DRIFTER(Tokyo Nagaremono) (1966) 83min
Director: Seijun Suzuki

THE WARPED ONES(1960) 108min
Director: Koreyoshi Kurahara

THE WOMAN WITH RED HAIR(Akai Kami no Onna) (1979) 73min
Director: Tatsumi Kumashiro

A WORLD OF GEISHA(Yojyohan Fusuma no Urabari) (1973) 77min
Director: Tatsumi Kumashiro

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