News and Opinion

Eiga Geijutsu Best 10 for 2010

I reported on the Kinema junpo Best 10 and on the Mainichi awards, so for an interesting contrast, here are the results of the poll conducted by Eiga geijutsu (Film Art). I used to be one of the selectors, which is enough to tell you the people that vote for their best ten can be an eclectic bunch, including not only film critics, but filmmakers (including some whose films are up for contention!). They sometimes end up picking films of friends or people close to the Eigei (and possibly manipulating results by selecting who votes each year), but there is a genuine dedication to more independent films compared to the KineJun and Mainichi awards. They also pick the worst films, which actually affects the best poll since "worst" votes are subtracted from "best" votes in the best ten poll. 

Here are the results for 2010:

Best:

1. Heaven's Story (Zeze Takahisa)

2. Doman Seman (Shibata Go)

3. Kore de ii no kashira (Okishima Isao)

4. Partners (Shimomura Masaru)

5. Yellow Kid (Mariko Tetsuya)

6. Sawako Decides (Ishii Yuya)

Mainichi Film Awards 2010

The Mainichi newspaper has announced the results of the 2010 Mainichi Film Awards (aka the Mainichi Concours):

Best Japanese Film: Villain (Lee Sang-il)
Award of Excellence in Japanese Film: Haru's Journey (Kobayashi Masahiro)
Best Foreign Film: Breathless

Best Director: Miike Takashi (13 Assassins)
Best Screenplay: Sato Yuki (Heaven's Story)
Best Actor: Tsutsumi Shin'ichi (A Lone Scalpel)
Best Actress: Terajima Shinobu (Caterpillar)
Best Supporting Actor: Inagaki Goro (13 Assassins)
Best Supporting Actress: Natsukawa Yui (A Lone Scalpel)
Best New Face Award: Endo Kaname (Yellow Kid), Tokunaga Eira (Haru's Journey)
Tanaka Kinuyo Award: 
Enami Kyoko

Best Cinematography: Kondo Ryuto (Sketches of Kaitan City)
Best Art Direction: Kondo Nariyuki (Abacus and Sword)
Best Music: Jim O'Rourke (Sketches of Kaitan City)
Best Sound: Nakamura Jun (13 Assassins)
Best Technical Award: none

Best Documentary: none
Animation Award: Colorful (Hara Keiichi)
Ofuji Noburo Award: none
Fan Award: 
Umizaru 3: The Last Message

Kinema Junpo Best Ten 2010

The papers and other sites are reporting the results of the Kinema Junpo poll of critics of the best ten films of 2010.

Takamine Hideko

TakamineHideko

Deko-chan has passed away (here's one story), and with it, a brilliant life in cinema.

Takamine Hideko was always one of my favorite Japanese actresses. As a child star, she was as adorable as could be, as a teenager, as cute as could be, and as an adult, as beautiful as could be. She was a remarkably versatile actress, one who quickly transitioned from precocious children in films by Ozu Yasujiro (Tokyo Chorus), to cute girls in Makino Masahiro (Awa no odoriko or Hanako-san), to dramatic powerhouse in Yamamoto Kajiro (Tsuzurikata kyoshitsu or Uma) -- all before she even hit age 15. As an adult, she was most famous for the dramatic works of Kinoshita Keisuke (Twenty-Four Eyes) and Naruse Mikio (When a Woman Ascends the Stairs; her face at the end of Midareru is one of the most powerful visages in film history and graces the front page of Catherine Russell's The Cinema of Naruse Mikio), but we should not forget her great talent for comedy (playing a stripper in Kinoshita's Carmen Comes Home or a conniving housewife in the satirical Fuzen no tomoshibi) and for singing (Ginza kankan musume). She seemingly could do everything, and do it with resolve and bright inner strength. After retiring as an actress, she even excelled as a witty essayist, publishing nearly a dozen books. 

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