Tokyoscope: The Japanese Cult Film Companion
 Patrick Macias
Language: English Release: 2001
Publisher: Cadence Books Pages: 374
Genre: Non-fiction ISBN: 1569316813

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Anthony Romero

Patrick Macias' book on Japanese cult cinema. The book covers more than 50 films, split into 9 sections: Giant Monsters, Sonny Chiba, Shogun Assassin, Horror, Yakuza, Kinji Fukasaki, Banned, Pink & Violent, Panic & Disaster, and Mike & Riki. The book's main focus is on actor Sonny Chiba, director Kinji Fukasaki and director Takashi Miike; however, the book features several things that might make it worth a purchase for fans of Toho. At the fore running is a nice interview done with Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971) director Yoshimitsu Banno. The interview goes over the film in-depth and talks about Banno's failed attempts to make other Godzilla films. The book also has a nice segment on banned films in Japan. Included in this segment are Toho's Half Human (1955), Latitude Zero (1969) [which as of writing this no longer fits in this category], and Prophecies of Nostradamus (1974); what makes this worthwhile is that the book goes over, thoroughly, the reasons why the films were banned. Other than that, however, there isn't a whole lot here to merit suggesting it to a Toho enthusiast, especially if one is only interested in their kaiju films, as the book only covers four of them. The Pink & Violent section might also be a turn off for some, and yes it does contain nudity. Also included are several drawings and comics by Yukihiko Ujihashi, which are not only done rather poorly but are often disturbing. The books does a good job in getting content that you won't find else where in publication, but unless one's a big fan of Sonny Chiba, Kinji Fukasaki, Takashi Miike, or just enjoys all Japanese cinema, the book will probably have little to offer them.