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Posts Tagged ‘Naoki Sato’

Best Scores of 2017 – Asia-Pacific, Part II

January 29, 2018 1 comment

The eighth and final installment in my annual series of articles looking at the best “under the radar” scores from around the world finds us on a triumphant return to Asia, with eight more reviews of the best film music the continent has to offer. And what a treasure trove it is, encompassing animated fantasies, TV series, war movies, epic dramas, and a guest appearance from the world’s most beloved 100-foot lizard. There are four scores from Japan, two from China, and one each from Turkey and Vietnam, rounding out what has been an eye-opening journey around the darkest reaches of the film music globe, searching for bright spots. Read more…

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Best Scores of 2017 – Asia-Pacific, Part I

January 22, 2018 2 comments

The seventh installment in my annual series of articles looking at the best “under the radar” scores from around the world sees us moving east to Asia. Asian film music – especially that of the far east and countries like Japan, China, and South Korea – is shockingly under-valued and un-discovered by the majority of film music fans in Europe and the United States, despite the fact that many of their films contain the bold, orchestral, theme-filled scores that they crave, but do not find in domestic blockbusters. My point in writing these reviews is to show that this great film music does exist if you’re willing to make a little effort to find it: case in point, these seven outstanding scores – four from Japan, one from China, one from Israel, and one outlier from Australia. We will be returning to this part of the world again soon! Read more…

Best Scores of 2016 – Asia, Part I

December 24, 2016 1 comment

The first installment in my annual series of articles looking at the best “under the radar” scores from around the world concentrates on music from films from the Asian continent – in this first case, Japan, China, Vietnam, Korea, and Israel. The film music coming from the Eastern hemisphere is among the best being written anywhere in the world right now, and my first look at the area features five scores by some of my favorite contemporary composers, including Naoki Sato, Christopher Wong, and one especially impressive newcomer. There will be more to come from Asia later! Read more…

RUDOLF THE BLACK CAT [RUDORUFU TO IPPAIATTENA] – Naoki Sato

August 5, 2016 Leave a comment

rudolftheblackcatOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

Rudolf the Black Cat is a Japanese animated family adventure film directed by Kunihiko Yuyama and Motonori Sakakibara. It follows the adventures of a suburban ‘indoor kitten’ named Rudolf, who has always longed to roam the streets of his little neighborhood. However, when Rudolf gets his wish and is accidentally abandoned miles away from his home in an unfamiliar big city by his owner, he must team up with a street cat called Gottalot in order to find his way back home. Read more…

THE NEVER-SETTING SUN [SHIZUMANU TAIYO] – Naoki Sato

May 8, 2016 Leave a comment

neversettingsunOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

The Never-Setting Sun is a Japanese TV series, a remake of the 2009 film of the same name, both of which are based on a popular novel by Toyoko Yamasaki. The story follows Hajime Onchi, an employee of a large Japanese airline, through his work as the chairman of the employees union in the 1960s, his ascent through the company and his travels in Pakistan, Iran, and Kenya in the 1970s, and the aftermath of a 1985 plane crash in which 500 people were killed, which Onchi is charged with investigating. The 20-episode series aired on the Japanese channel WOWOW in May 2006, was directed by Toshiyuki Mizutani and Kosuke Suzuki, and has a score by the incredible Naoki Sato, chronologically the third of the nine scores he wrote in 2016. Read more…

GUARDIAN OF THE SPIRIT [SEIREI NO MAMORIBITO] – Naoki Sato

March 19, 2016 Leave a comment

guardianofthespiritOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

Guardian of the Spirit is a 4-episode live-action Japanese television miniseries which aired on the NHK network in March and April 2016. Directed by Keiji Kataoka, it is an adaptation of a popular series of historical action-fantasy novels by author Nahaoko Uehashi, and tells the story of a mysterious spear-wielding warrior named Balsa who, shortly after arriving in the New Yogo Kingdom, saves the life of Prince Chagum from a thinly veiled assassination attempt. When it is revealed that the attempt was ordered by Chagum’s own father, Emperor Mikado, Balsa is hired to protect him; as they travel together, Balsa’s complicated past begins to come to light, and they uncover Chagum’s mysterious connection to a legendary water spirit with the power to destroy the kingdom. Read more…

Best Scores of 2015 – Asia

January 27, 2016 3 comments

The sixth and final installment in my series of articles looking at the best “under the radar” scores from around the world concentrates on music from films from Asia, although all of main ones this year are from the far eastern nation of Japan, with a couple of interlopers from Iran and the Lebanon. In this article, I’m taking a deeper look at several truly excellent works, which range in scope from anime movies and prestigious TV series to fantasy adventures, small-scale dramas, and religious epics. Read more…