In 1985, Macoto Tezka (son of the great manga artist Osamu Tezuka) met musician and TV personality Haruo Chicada, who had made a soundtrack to a movie which didn’t actually exist: The Legend of the Stardust Brothers. At the time Macoto was just 22 years old, a film-student with many short experimental films under his belt, but yet to make a feature-debut. With Chicada as producer, Tezka then adapted this “fake soundtrack” into the real movie story of The Stardust Brothers.
Samurai, robots, flying tiger sharks, time-traveling baseball players and alien monsters: the legendary – and above all notoriously bad – Japanese detective series Ronin Suiri Tentai had it all. In Japan, the series was strangely enough no more than a modest success. But in Australia, where it was released in the early 1990s under the title Top Knot Detective, the series became a gigantic cult hit.
“Learn the inside story about the greatest Japanese samurai series, you’ve never heard of before.”
Written and directed by Shinichiro Ueda, One Cut of the Dead begins with an impressive 37 minute long take set in an abandoned Japanese water filtration plant. “It’s just an urban legend… On record, this place was built for water filtration. But the Japanese army used here for some sort of experimentation… Human experimentation. Like…bringing the dead back to life.” Shinichiro Ueda’s movie injects the zombie trope with new life; thus reanimating the sub-genre. This is not Dawn of the Dead, nor is it Shaun of the Dead. Instead, One Cut of the Dead celebrates low-budget filmmaking.
“Making a zombie movie, on a live broadcast, in one take?”
One Cut of the Dead opens in a run-down, abandoned warehouse where a film crew are making a zombie film… Yet, this is no ordinary warehouse. It’s been said that this warehouse is the site where military experiments once took place…
“Don’t stop shooting!”
Third Window Films team up again with director Eiji Uchida after the success of Lowlife Love, to create a black comedy based on an unbelievable true story dealing with cults, gangs and true love in Japan’s countryside. Love and Other Cults portrays young people having their lives tossed around by adults; dealing with social issues such as child neglect, teenage gangs and the sex industry against a blackly comic background.