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Reviews Written by
Mr. Richard K. Weems "emperor_weems" (Fair Lawn, NJ USA)

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Prelapse
Prelapse

4.0 out of 5 stars a potentially great band constricting itself, Aug. 20 2003
This review is from: Prelapse (Audio CD)
When it comes to John Zorn, I get bored. His work with Naked City was wonderful, but most of his other stuff I find tiresome nowadays. This particular band has great potential, but they chain themselves far too tightly to the Zorn aura--the best stuff on this album were the tracks written by Prelapse themselves, not the 'unrecorded music' of Naked City. I hope this band realize their own artistry and branch off into their own work.

Fireworks (Widescreen) [Import]
Fireworks (Widescreen) [Import]
DVD ~ Takeshi Kitano
Offered by thebookcommunity_ca
Price: CDN$ 121.70
6 used & new from CDN$ 23.99

4.0 out of 5 stars a powerful movie that took a few tries, Aug. 20 2003
It's hard for me not to think of movies like Boiling Point and Violent Cop while watching this. Takeshi (Beat) Kitano made quite a switch from Takeshi's Castle to the heavy drama of these movies, but perhaps it was too heavy at first. Violent Cop is, in the end, an unrealized movie that doesn't really manage to control its range of emotional tension, violence and humanity. Boiling Point does better, but perhaps is a little too bleak (this from a guy who loves violent movies). In Fireworks, though, Kitano gets it all right. The violence is stark, Kitano is a bubbling, quiet and stoic while really letting you know what's on his mind, and this film, believe it or not, is bursting with hope--though it's never really acknowledged by the characters themselves.

Kitchen
Kitchen
by Banana Yoshimoto
Edition: Paperback
56 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

1.0 out of 5 stars poor in substance and form, Aug. 20 2003
This review is from: Kitchen (Paperback)
In the end, I found this book extremely unchallenging. I read it in an hour, finding little to actually engage my senses. Perhaps I am simply not its intended audience, or this is a poor translation, but I found that it offered me little promise to reward me for anything more than a cursory read.

Tokyoscope: The Japanese Cult Film Corporation
Tokyoscope: The Japanese Cult Film Corporation
by Patrick Macias
Edition: Paperback
20 used & new from CDN$ 28.33

5.0 out of 5 stars educational even for a Japanese cinemaphile, Aug. 20 2003
I wouldn't call myself an expert on Japanese movies, but I do get to every movie festival I can that has Asian features (a great one--the Philapdelphia film festival and their Action Asia selections). I regularly scan the gray market and grab at whatever tickles my fancy even remotely. But this book still provided me with an education. I quibble sometimes with the author's taste, but his breadth of knowledge is undebatable. I now keep this book on my computer desk as I scan for more titles to fuel my little obsession.

South of the Border, West of the Sun: A Novel
South of the Border, West of the Sun: A Novel
by Haruki Murakami
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 12.24
44 used & new from CDN$ 4.61

5.0 out of 5 stars Murakami sustains such hardcore emotion, Aug. 20 2003
Odd to say, but my first reactions to Murakami were much like those I had for Samuel Beckett--I didn't quite understand what the man was up to, but he intrigued me nonetheless. With both of them I've gone out of my way to read everything they've written and hope one day to catch up. This book, the latest I've read by Murakami, I was able to approach with confidence. I still may not know what he's up to, but I think I know how to read him. What you may think of as 'plot' is more of a device to present an uncontrollable world around the narrator, a vastness of the unknown, and Murakami's characters can only deal with it without ever solving it. This novel is brilliantly emotional and spiritual, a search for what is important and necessary over what is desired. Murakami also has an amazing writing style--he sustains an emotional tension from the first word, and it never abates until the precise moment he wants it to, when there is either epiphany or despair at never reaching the former. I doubt this is good Murakami to start with--for that, I would more easily recommend _The Elephant Vanishes_ to whet your whistle, but this is a compact and highly effective book to come to later, once you're ready to sit back and listen to Murakami unwind as he sees fit.

First Grand Constitution And
First Grand Constitution And
Price: CDN$ 19.58
4 used & new from CDN$ 11.99

3.0 out of 5 stars an impressive start, but later recordings much better, Aug. 18 2003
Check out 2nd Grand COnstitution or Book M. I love what Secret Chiefs 3 is doing in philosophy, but this album is very under-realized and not as sharp as their later efforts.

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