"Everything is a mash-up, a mix, a collage of ideas and perceptions, some personal, some found elsewhere. Watching this executed by a talented director is a truly unique experience"
"The entire film is an oddly compelling and insanely stylized fever dream that left me completely dazed and fully perplexed, a rare and significant accomplishment."
"The presentation is gobsmackingly beautiful, with soundtrack and cinematography constantly feeding off of each other. The acting is superb, the story intriguing and the pacing pretty damn perfect."
"Playfully poetic, magically serene and pleasantly dreamy, watching the film is a calming experience that puts you right in there with the characters while providing a superb aesthetic frame."
"An exciting trip down a world that isn't quite our own, blending different genres and styles into one chaotic whole."
"Short Peace proudly honors the the rich tradition of Japan's animated anthologies. It's up there with the very best, bustling with innovation and creative freedom."
"Tom Lin paints one of the dearest, warmest and most charming films of the year."
"It's hard to recommend this film to people who don't really know what they're getting into."
"Yakuza Apocalypse is the kind of Miike I adore. The film looks good, sounds good, is stacked with crazy ideas and even weirder characters and dares to cross the line of common sense more than once."
"You may think 64 minutes is rather short, but it's perfect for a film like this."
"That said, it didn't make the film any less enjoyable, on the contrary even. Tokyo Tribe is a killer ride from beginning to end. It's brutal, outrageous, funny, weird and it has a terrific drive."
"If the film had stopped 20 minutes earlier I would've given it a full score, now I feel Beyond The Black Rainbow fails to fulfill its true potential."
"If you like cultural melting pots, non-narrative cinema, punk cinema or just something off-kilter and youthful, then give Ruined Heart a try."
"I found Godkiller to be a refreshing experience. I loved the art style, dug the soundtrack and simply swooned at the cyberpunk storytelling."
"It's a wonderfully stylized, strongly realized and often completely baffling film that has both heart and brains and lacks any kind of commercial filter."
"They left Nihei's appeal and style intact, the action sequences are brutal and the megastructure looks as cool as it does in the manga."
"It's original, quirky, stylish and otherworldly. A tough cookie on the outside, but incredibly rich in taste and texture on the inside."
"I just hope the poor reception won't hinder Mortier in his next project. The man deserves to keep on filming and to grow as a film maker."
"Once it picks up steam it never falls back, propelling itself to an inevitable climax that left me perplexed and impressed. "
"There comes a point in a film fan's life when few films still manage to surprise, let alone bewilder. At that exact moment, films like The Land of Cards become something you thoroughly treasure."
"Antiporno is a great example of why Japan's pinku films enjoy such a peculiar status among film fans and why it's been such a fertile breeding ground for young, talented directors."
"Hardcore Henry is a film with no noticeable compromises. I say noticeable, because with only 2 million dollars to spend there must have been quite a few limitations for Naishuller and his crew."
"There is plenty of wonder, tension and intrigue that kept me occupied whenever I found time to pry my eyes and ears away from the drop dead gorgeous presentation."
"Gravity is a film that needs to be experienced in theaters, preferably in 3D, though I am quite certain it will survive the living room experience just as well."
"Mong-Hong Chung clearly outgrew his image of upcoming talent. His direction is so purposeful and to the point that it almost feels as if he's a veteran already."
"Whatever the case though, Tag is a unique film. It kept me guessing the entire way through, there are some very memorable scenes and the acting is spot on."
"Pavel Khvaleev is a talented director, no doubt. The world he creates is mystical, mysterious and eerie."
"Powerful, poetic, lush, atmospheric and ultimately gripping. It's not unique or wildly different, but a perfect execution of a popular genre, lifting the film far above the competition."
"Eduardo Casanova made a stunning first feature. It's hyper-stylized, it's extremely daring and surprisingly well-balanced."
"That's It is a blast. Energetic, mysterious, fun, wild ... it's just one big entertaining mess. The film looks great, sounds great and the actors are all on top of their game."
"The bottom line is that, all things considerend, Reiketsu-hen shouldn't work as well as it does."
"It's lush looking, well acted, aptly scored and surprising at every turn. It's quirky and giddish, but at the same time it's also dark, brooding and lingering."
"That said, Confessions is definitely one of the best 2010 films I've seen so far. It's an audiovisual masterpiece, bearing an interesting plot, powerful emotions and some poignant social commentary."
"Big Fish and Begonia is an absolute stunner, an audiovisual experience that dragged me into its world and didn't let go until the final frame faded and the last note died."
"Lost River's reception was pretty poor, but that was only to be expected."
"Kwam and Scheinert deliver a film that is witty, smart, well-made, pure and most of all unique."
"See You Tomorrow is a pleasure to behold. It works both as a super stylish genre flick and as more accessible entertainment. There's plenty of talent involved and nobody disappoints."
"That said, I loved every minute of High & Low: The Movie. The action superb, the styling is just insane and the pacing is pleasantly fast."
"With a superb soundtrack, two killer leads and some visual punch he delivers a film that has the power to linger. That is, if you can stomach what Kumakiri has to show."
"Alléluia is definitely a film that grew on me. The crescendo is skilfully executed and even continued after the film had finished."
"I'm excited to see where Wong will go from here. Guilty proves she is more than capable to stand on her own two feet, delivering a film that is powerful, gripping and skilfully made."
"The rest of the film is pure genius though. It's stylish, classy, funny and revolting. The acting is top notch, the film looks incredible and the soundtrack adds a lot of atmosphere."
"A film like Mother! is impossible to recommend, but it's also a film that needs to be experienced regardless of appreciation."
"The film is a visual wonder that offers plenty of entertainment. While the story is adequate and the acting on point, it's really just a trip through the magnificent universe that Chen conjures up."
"It seems Tanaka is back where he belongs, after going through some rougher patches in the late 00's. Chasuke's Journey is visually stunning, well acted, original and most of all unique."
"Get past the cultural oddities though and you'll find an absolutely gorgeous looking genre film, by far one of the best horror films to come out of Hong Kong in a long, long time."
"Suffering of Ninko is the kind of film that made me fall in love with Japanese cinema all these years ago. It's different, fun, it looks great and its overall very creative."
"Flashy, funny, weird and in-your-face. I'm an instant Wuershan fan and hope he'll keep doing stuff like this"
"A remarkable blend of arthouse and commercial cinema that strikes a perfect balance between entertainment and cinematic wonder."
"I experienced Moebius as a pretty intense drama, a downwards spiral invoked by a family acting purely on their urges and instincts."
"Watching Why Don't You Play In Hell? will tell you a few things about Sono's dreams and aspirations as a young director."
"The real-world setting mixed with slight fantasy elements makes the film a bit more accessible compared to Shinkai's earlier films."
"Basset shows tremendous potential and doesn't waste any time cashing in on it. Horsehead is an audiovisual marvel, featuring an amazing soundtrack and stellar cinematography."
"Hoshi creates a wonderfully magical drama, serving just the right amount of drama, geekiness, magical realism and love for his characters."
"Revenge: A Love Story plays like a modern Hong Kong version of Se7en, only better, more tense and not as restrained as Fincher's film."
"If it's narritve and plot you're after Isle of Dogs may feel a little flimsy, but when you're longing for craft, wit and passion than Anderson's latest has you covered. "
"Cannibal is definitely my kind of film. Incredibly atmospheric, uncompromising and unique."
"If you still haven't seen enough bodily mutations, strange nose guns or creative ways to slice people in half (or more parts), this is a film that cannot be missed."
"The Wind Rises is more than worthy closing act. It's one of Miyazaki's best films, a stunning ode to passion and perseverance in the face of a looming war."
"The Grand Budapest Hotel may not be laugh out loud funny for the most part of its running time, it left me with a big, wide grin on my face afterwards."
"Beast is a very worthy addition to the oeuvre of Boe."
"The actors carry a disarming charm, the humor is actually funny and the film as a whole is a worthwhile audiovisual experience."
"It's beautifully shot, wonderfully scored and aptly acted. It scores well in just about every department, showcasing the progress Tran has made as a director."
"The first hour or so provides a solid setup, introducing all characters and factions related to the Yakuza gang, while the final 30 minutes are the icing on the cake."
"Sunao Katabuchi crafted a gentle, warm and endearing film, but not without its share of sharp critique and gut-wrenching drama."
"Seshita is quickly making a name for himself. Making an entrance like this into the Gojira franchise is pretty daring, but it's a bet that paid off."
"The Case of Hana & Alice was better than I expected."
"Bunny Drop is a lovely film with lots to smile about. Wonderfully acted, creatively visualized and aptly scored, you can't really go wrong with this one."
"There's enough madness here to fill 3 or 4 separate films."
"It's a technical marvel, an unearthly combination of pulp and arthouse and equally moving and entertaining without ever becoming cheap."
"Ishii truly reinvents himself here and comes with a film that's just as unique as his previous work, only very different in tone."
"Monsters Club is my favorite Toyoda so far. The film is a beauty, the atmosphere is tangible and the imagery unique."
"There is a clear possibility of oversaturation though. The World of Kanako isn't subtle and doesn't offer much in the way of breathers."
"Smuggler is an extremely entertaining slice of dark entertainment. Littered with weird and freaky characters, the four chapters play out well and make for an interesting finale."
"First Time is a superb example of how to do romance right, without necessarily ending up in arthouse territory."
"A small, delicate and subtle little film that feels fresher than its peers and excels in just about every way possible."
"Mandy is a visually overpowering, gritty and gory revenge slaughterfest, fronted by one of cinema's boldest mad man actors."
"It's good to see this kind of fast-paced martial arts cinema being revived."
"Ninja Kids!!! is the perfect example of demented Japanese kids entertainment that's weird enough to appeal to adults, at least those with some memories of their lost childhood."
"Kotoko is another work of love."
"Carruth is one of America's biggest talents. His involvement in his films goes deep and it shows."
"In between the shorts are some nicely animated intermissions, properly introducing each film."
"Garden of Words is everything you'd expect from a Shinkai film."
"This is not a very happy film, nor is it very subtle."
"Cold Fish is a film that will sit well with those who appreciate awkward, cruel and excessive Japanese cinema."
"Pieta is a pretty complete package. The film looks great, has a superb soundtrack, two extremely impressive leads and a boatload of symbolism for those who enjoy that kind of thing."
"Nishimura adepts can rejoice, Helldriver is up there with the best, sporting roughly two hours of madness, hilariously out-of-place social criticism and tons and tons of liters of blood."
"It's cute, charming, funny and perfect for a warm summer evening. Don't expect anything deep or challenging, just let the film's charm sweep you away."
"The first fifteen minutes where a little though, but once Sumida starts his descent into madness the film never back down."
"It's a shame it takes a little too long before the film gets really going, because Chen is obviously a very talented director."
"Gantz:O is brutal, action-packed and a bit mad in the head."
"Instead the film leans heavily on the learning process, which goes well beyond the simple A/B testing you'd expect from a concept like this."
"If you like 120 minutes of stylish showdowns, explosive action scenes and over-the-top characters, Eiichiro Hasumi delivers one of the best films in ages."
"That said, The Book Of Eli is definitely one of the best things I've seen coming from Hollywood this year. It's all style and atmosphere, wonderfully executed and well acted."
"Comet is quite the calling card for Esmail. It may be his first feature film, but it feels very polished and firmly directed."
"R100 is a crazy film, full of deadpan comedy, weird references and an internal logic that convinces without making any actual sense."
"Because the film lacks any sense of urgency or lingering drama, it's probably not for everyone."
"Shadow's eye-popping visuals amaze from start to finish and with all the other elements adequately covered there are plenty of stand-out scenes that may become pillars of the genre."
"One Day is above all a stylish romance, with some supernatural touches thrown in for good measure. It's a beautiful film, wonderfully executed and growing more engrossing with each passing minute."
"Zoe is extremely stylish, sports superb performances and combines smarts with relevance. It's a well thought-out mix of genres that dazzles from start to finish."
"Not only is May We Chat a very welcome and needed addition to the Hong Kong filmography, it's also a great film regardless."
"The result is a strong, remarkable drama with no weak points and a few stand-out scenes that linger long after the end credits have faded from the screen."
"While the film drags a little in the middle the rest of it is pretty much perfect. It's fast-paced, funny, weird, extravagant and doesn't seem worried by any boundaries or possible audiences."
"It's more of the same of course, just 130 minutes of that same fun, entertaining and surprising comedy that makes Miike films such unique experiences."
"Lu over the Wall is the perfect blend of Yuasa and Miyazaki. A film that feels creative and original, but is also sweet, warm and comfortable at the same time."
"Ultimately I still prefer Lin's more frivolous side, but that doesn't change the fact that Zinnia Flower is quite the impressive drama."
"There's a lot to like here, the film never bores or gets stale, it's extremely stylized from start to finish, but two key sequences show a glimpse of what could have been."
"The Tale of Princess Kaguya is still a marvel to behold and definitely worth your time, but it's also a film that feels like a natural end to Takahata's career."
"Black Swan sees Aronofsky back in good shape. Opinions differ, but I'm glad he left the gritty dramas alone and went back to more familiar territory."
"The way he brings everything together though is quite unique, not in the least for a Chinese film maker. The result is a thorougly entertaining film that amuses, dazzles and delights."
"Monk Comes Down the Mountain is above all a very amusing film. Chen made a light-hearted, fun and playful little romp, which rises above itself thanks to its tremendous production value."
"If you don't mind a little bit of coupling and you can look past the conventions you'll find a sweet, cute and endearing little film that charms its way past any remaining doubts."
"The Chrysalis is pure genre cinema. It operates on textbook mechanics and follows an all too familiar path, but the execution is flawless while Chu-ji Qiu demonstrates his skills as a director."
"the film looks great, sports a superb soundtrack and is well-cast. It's a pretty perfect debut that will hopefully establish Fargeat as a director to look out for in the coming years."
"There's a whole lot of U Turn in here, a bit of Coens maybe, a dash of Western flavour and topped off with plenty of Chinese touches."
"One Night Only is raw and undiluted cinematic fun, boasting superb visuals, a great soundtrack and a more than solid cast."
"The economic running time, the use of superb athletes, the visual imagination and the overall first-grade production values make Tai Chi Zero one of the more entertaining films of 2012."
"The Tale of Iya is a film that comes with a built-in audience."
"Foung-Hon Chiang produced a sweet, sunny and pleasant film."
"JoJo's Bizarre Adventure is commercial cinema done right. It's big, bold and visibly backed by a sizeable budget, but at the same time it also feels original and creative"
"130 minutes is quite long for an anime feature, but Yamada need every minute of that to tell this story."
"As the Gods Will is a typical Miike flick in the sense that it's pretty much pointless to compare it to other films out there."
"A film that aptly blends the more serious elements of Japanese drama with some fantastical touches and a slightly more accessible front, without going full commercial tearjerker."
"This is clearly not a film for everyone. Its style makes it quite light-hearted and frolicy , while the drama and romance are heavily accentuated."
"If you don't like the setting and you aren't charmed by the film's stylish exterior, the harsh action and crude characters probably won't cut it for you."
"As is the case with most (if not all) genre films, in the end it's the execution that matters and that's where this film shines bright."
"The film's excruciating pacing combined with the wacky fantasy elements make it a thoroughly enjoyable rollercoaster ride."
"The final thirty minutes are a true delight, even when Raaphorst doesn't cash in on the tension and the gore, the creature effects and designs alone are enough to keep the film going."
"Hadzihalilovic delivered what I consider to be an almost perfect second feature."
"You could read a million reviews and still not know what to expect. There's also no telling whether you'll end up liking it, but I'm pretty confident that this will be a unique experience"
"Oscar or no Oscar, The Shape of Water is a pretty magnificent film."
"Pink and Gray is a pretty great film, but some familiarity with the director will definitely help you to appreciate it to its fullest."
"With The Divide, Gens created another stylish genre flick."
"The Continent isn't very original or earth-shattering. It's funnier than I would've guessed, but that's mainly because Chinese films rarely combine drama and comedy in a very balanced way."
"If you're looking for something fun, dashing and creative, Animal World won't disappoint. It's a little mad, a little showy and often a bit incoherent, but in the end it's a hell of a ride."
"If you're looking for a quality martial arts epic, look no further because this film has everything to quench your thirst."
"A damn slick, sexy and entertaining film, sporting great visuals, a strong soundtrack and a solid cast while being edgy and challenging enough to stand out from the crowd"
"It's a stylish, relentless and moving drama, sporting excellent performances, a superb score and some high quality cinematography."
"That said, there is still plenty to enjoy here. It seems that with each new film Miike raises the bar on production level. For Love's Sake looks absolutely stunning, from start to finish."
"Anomalisa is an interesting film. On the one hand there's the superb work that went into animating the entire film."
"Once the film has you in its grip, the pay-off is grand. Lush visuals, captivating soundscapes and solid acting make for a brooding, dense and enveloping experience."
"Zebraman 2 is not all that easy to recommend. Depending on what you expect or demand from a sequel, it's either a missed opportunity or a definite improvement over the first film."
"Don't go in expecting a true slasher flick, expect a genre flick adapted by the mind of Ho-Cheung Pang."
"After Welcome to the Space Show, The Night Is Short, Walk on Girl is somewhat of a return to form for Yuasa."
"Spectral isn't the blow-out hit Netflix needs to convert the masses, nor is it the classy arthouse hit that it needs to attractÂ a more hardcore film fan audience."
"Witching and Bitching is a true visual orgasm, a film that looks amazing from the very first to the very last frame."
"Even so, Daemonium: Underground Soldier is probably a little too bonkers to appeal to mainstream fans."
"Han created a sprawling and aesthetically pleasing futuristic world with enough visual prowess to catapult you seamlessly through its 100 minute running time."
"Hopefully Rise of the Legend is only the first in a series of new Wong Fei-hung films, as the end left me begging for more."
"Raw is a great film for a director just starting out in the business."
"Maybe the soundtrack could've been a little better, maybe the visuals appear a little empty at times, but that's just nit-picking."
"Even though this film may be a bit too dense and slow for some, once Gojira awakes there's still plenty of massive and all-destructive chaos to look forward to."
"It's comforting to know Shunji Iwai is back and hasn't lost his touch."
"Shady is a film that takes a bunch of familiar elements, rearranges them slightly but deliberately and adds a dash of its own uniqueness."
"Even if you don't like superheroes, even if you don't like the nerdy overtones, hell, even if you don't give a damn about the whole setup, Kick-Ass is still a pretty cool film."
"Stoker was a very pleasant discovery. I didn't expect too much from it, but from the very first moments the film pulled me in and never let go after that."
"The amazing camera work, the strong performances and the moody use of soundscapes make for a dreamy film, even when the subject matter isn't all that rosy."
"Batman Ninja features sprawling animation, an amazing art style and some wacky action, making it a blast from start to finish."
"The film looks beautiful, the acting is superb and while thematically a little easy the execution and blend of genres makes sure it never becomes too dull or feels too familiar."
"Secret Fruit is a stylistic highlight that feels cosy and warm and charms its way from start to finish."
"Sarusuberi: Miss Hokusai is a much needed entry in the anime feature film segment. It isn't based off of a big, popular franchise."
"Toyoda made an impeccable sequel to Miike's first two films."
"Port of Call is edgy, challenging and accomplished. The film looks great, the acting is exceptional and the soundtrack is on point."
"Everything about Frankenweenie shows that this a film made with lots of passion and dedication."
"The animation is abundant and on point, the voice acting is superb and the plot balances small human drama and wild fantasy perfectly."
"I do think Night's Tightrope is a film that could please a broader audience, but it's pretty obvious that it's not going to get that chance."
"At its very core, Veronica is a rather simple and mousy little headfuck. But the execution is smart, stylish and honed to perfection."
"A horror film pur sang, lacking forced attempts to mix in other genres. It's raw, brutal and disturbing, but always with a twist and executed to perfection."
"If you feel like watching a smooth, agreeable and warm-hearted drama on a leisurely summer day, The Furthest End Awaits is a perfect match."
"A self-written, self-directed romance that feels quite familiar and comfortable, but has one major selling point. From start to finish, the film looks drop-dead gorgeous."
"Electricity is a welcome change of pace for British drama. Higgins made a beautiful, unique and touching film that lives in its own little niche."
"The less you know about this film, the more fun it will be experiencing the absurdities it throws at you."
"Uchida delivered this amazing genre bender that may leave the uninitiated a little stunned, but should be required viewing for everyone with a soft spot for Japanese genre cinema."
"Stylishly visualized, strongly acted and pleasantly diverse, Eternal Moment is another great film in Yibai Zhang's oeuvre"
"The Flowers Of War borders on sentimentality and poses as a very epic endeavor. It's Zhang's magnificent direction that erases any major critiques, turning the film into a proper epic spectacle."
"It all adds up to something quite weird and quite unique, but also quite specific and niche. Going in with a good understanding of how and what the film makes fun of is probably a prerequisite."
"Plaza knows how to deliver a fun, action-filled zombie flick that harbors some kick-ass gore and a few very funny moments."
"It's Burton's style that thrives the film to greater heights. One of the best Burton films I've seen so far, I hope he continues on this path"
"Li delivers a fun, gritty and stylish crime flick with some very impressive action scenes and a stand-out performance by Shawn Yue."
"Livid is a superb horror flick that easily surpasses most of its peers. Watch it with an open mind and you'll see there is plenty to love and enjoy here."
"If you want to explore Hong Kong's upcoming talent and you don't mind shifting gears from time to time, then this one comes well recommended."
"It's another great addition to Pang's oeuvre and proof that he's a truly unique force in the Hong Kong movie industry. One for the connoisseurs."
"If you like the HK police flicks Drug War is one of the best offerings around. It's a stylish, tense and strong crime flick, helmed by one of the most seasoned crime cinema veterans. "
" I thoroughly enjoyed Zang's trip, not in the least because of Huo's skilful presentation. "
"I found La Meute to be a very pleasant surprise, but I encountered plenty of disappointed reactions elsewhere."
"It's moody and stylish but also grim and harsh when needed, while strong camera work, a solid cast and a unique blend of familiar elements sets it apart from its peers."
"Destruction Babies is a great film. It walks a fine line between accomplished cinema and maverick nihilism and succeeds with deceptive ease."
"There aren't many directors who can pull of urban fantasy like Winans can, even when he only has a rather limited budget to work with."
"It's a vile, gritty and hellish descent (or rise if you will) into a fear-inducing concrete structure, providing plenty of chills and uneasy moments that belong up there with the best"
"The ending could've been better and lacks impact though. While not bad or disappointing, it somehow lacks the strength to bring the separate parts of the film to an appropriate conclusion."
"His newfound independence is a true blessing, one he exploits to the fullest. I thoroughly enjoyed Smith's new film and I surely hope he can keep this up for a while longer."
"The production values are high, the acting is the right kind of tongue-in-cheek and the action scenes sparkle. Fung created a perfect sequel that leaves you begging for the final act."
"Luk shows she has talent as a director and delivers a powerful, confrontational yet endearing drama. Hopefully her talent is recognized and she isn't shot down for the unconventional choices she made"
"Antarctica: A Year on Ice is a template for what I look for in a good documentary. It's factual, it's fair and it has strong filmic qualities."
"With his first feature, Govaerts delivers a rock solid genre film. It's tense and moody, never too gory, beautifully shot, aptly scored and generally well-directed."