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Europa Report is the planetary adventure this week, searching for life on Jupiter’s fourth largest moon. While not the largest budget film ever, this one looks very interesting indeed. The other one I would really like to see is Library Wars, if I can just make it over to the Japan Film Festival of San Francisco. In 2019 a new law is passed, which allows the government to create an armed force to destroy objectionable printed material. Opposing this is the Library Force, teachers and librarians out to protect all books, and they too are heavily armed. I know which side I would be fighting on! Or you could just go for the action roller coaster and see 2 Guns; it’s not genre, but it looks like a lot of fun. Notice how I didn’t even mention Cockneys vs Zombies?

Japanese commercials are even stranger than the ones they build to catch our attention in the west. Having said that, a lot of these would work anywhere around the world, but about 25% of them could only come from Japan. That probably has as much to do with the globalization of culture on Earth as it does with the difference in cultures from different parts of the world. As recently as 40 years ago, only about 15% of them had anything in common at all. These days, they are selling you the same products with a slant that they hope will increase sales within the national borders of a given country. That tends to limit creativity, but there are still a few interesting and unique commercials among the collection.

Japanese commercials look strange to western eyes mostly because we do not have the cultural context to appreciate them. While some of these look very like what you might find on TV over here, some are just bizarre looking. Enjoy.

I have been waiting for Pacific Rim for quite a while, and finally It Is Gojira Season! We get to don our Giant Mecha suits and battle the monsters head on, at least in the virtual universe of the big screen. I fully expect to be completely entertained by this one, and will probably come home only to spend the rest of the day being fully immersed in more Giant Mecha excitement.

It is true, there is a new Ghost In The Shell project with an all new series of videos and a new story line. This one is called Ghost in the Shell: Arise! and it is made up of four 50 minute episodes. It looks like it will bring all our favorite characters back together again in that same cyberpunk universe we have enjoyed so many times before. Episode 1 hit the big screens in Tokyo last week, but I figure it will be at least the end of July before the DVDs get released here and we get to enjoy them. There may be a few rare theaters that will throw this on the big screen in the US, but I haven’t found any yet. If you find one of them, give me a shout; I would really like to be there!

OK, he didn’t leap, he took the train, but I couldn’t resist. The movie Enoshima Prism takes place three years after the death of their friend, where Shuta boards a train at the Enoshima Station while dwelling on the loss. Instead of taking him to another station, the train lets him off in the same place but three years in the past, giving Shuta a very short time to figure out how to save Saku before history repeats itself and he dies again. That is actually the 8th out of 10 trailers they have released for the movie, with the film itself hitting the big screen in Japan in August. No word yet on when it will become available in the US, but it looks pretty interesting so I am hoping soon.