When considering what to do for the first full theme week of 2016, it seemed only natural to go back to where it all began. Once again I take a look at one of my favorite film makers and thankfully one of the most prolific, a master of transgression and violence, Takashi Miike. He has become one of my favorite directors because he is always surprising and always changing, always looking to capitalize on new trends and ideas.
The elements that bind his various works into a coherent ouvre are his boundless energy, and surprisingly, his deep humanity. Despite all the blood and guts and all the insanity, Miike’s films often have compassionate themes and social commentary. He takes a pulp yakuza tale drenched in gore and works in a theme about anti-immigrant racism in Japan.
A small sampling of his works are definitely not enough to fully grasp his diversity as a film maker, the scope of his filmography makes him someone you should not underestimate. Just when you think you have him pidgeonholed and you think you have an idea of the limits of his capabilities, he surprises with a zombie musical, video game adaptation, or vampire yakuza flick. Let’s see what we have in store!