More than a decade ago, Atlus had a cool section on its website where various game developers kept some sort of diaries. The subjects ranged from their hobbies, inspirations, game progress, etc. (think Soejima’s or Hashino’s Creator Works) Kaneko was part of this too and his ‘diary’ had more than thirty chapters, which sounds really cool and exciting when you think about it, except that…
Except that new parent company meant new website, so the old Atlus website just died and no one bothered to transfer all those tiny pieces of Atlus history which were mostly lost (unless someone had the foresight to save them in advance). I tried to salvage what I could find, namely Kaneko’s, but as you can already see, it was close to impossible.
So, without further ado, here’s what’s left of Kaneko Kazuma’s Movie Diary (Kaneko ranting about horror movies basically) _( `◟ 、_ )ﾉｼ
Kaneko Kazuma’s Movie Diary Vol.3
Hello, Kaneko here.
Everybody knows that the successive holidays in May were named ‘Golden Week’ by the movie industry, but lately, people have started staying at home more than actually going on trips.
Perhaps this is exactly why there are a lot of new DVD releases planned for this period, so when you go to the rental stores you see a lot of couples looking for movies, while old cinemas go bankrupt one after the other. The business model of the movie industry has definitely changed.
Among those new releases there’s one I had been long waiting for: Presley vs the Mummy. It was released in the US four years ago and I figured this kind of movie wouldn’t be released in Japan too. I watched it as soon as possible with the biggest grin on my face, but…how should I put it, this movie feels like the type of work where the viewer is constantly tested to see what kind of theme they can discover in it. In one word, well, it feels like Don Coscarelli. Don Coscarelli’s most famous work is Phantasm, so when I think about it, he’s been in the business for such a long time and he’s still active! That’s why the movie feels like an old men’s problem seen from the point of view of old men, even in the film industry; perhaps there’s also the feeling of not wanting to lose in front of the young ones. Well, there’s the issue of not knowing what you want to do even before you think about losing or not losing.
Oh, that’s right, the mummy who fights Presley is named Bubba Ho-Tep (the original title of the movie), so as a joke his lines are shown on the lower half of the screen as big hieroglyphs. It was kind of interesting and reminded me of the Kuuya statue at Rokuharamitsuji (I’m forcing myself to praise it).
Well, I guess this movie is for people who feel challenged by rather absurd movies or maybe for Bruce Campbell fans.
Speaking of which, Bruce Campbell, who plays the protagonist, became extremely popular in the horror movie industry after starring in The Evil Dead* (I strongly recommend his performance in Evil Dead II when a spirit possesses his left hand**) and even had his name appear in the third movie of the series*** (Bruce Campbell vs. Army of Darkness). You can tell he is loved. He also showed up in smaller roles in various other movies to his fans’ delight, but seeing an actor’s name show up in the movie title is amazing.
The Japanese equivalent nowadays would basically be ‘KimuTaku vs. Army Corps of Hell’.
In that sense, we also have the movie Atomik Circus, with the Japanese title Aliens vs. Vanessa Paradis (Vanessa Paradis is a French model and singer and Johnny Depp’s wife). I’d also recommend this to people interested in weird movies. The alien design is pretty good as well.
Back to Presley, there’s also a movie about a robbery at an Elvis Presley meeting in Las Vegas, called ‘Scorpion’. It’s basically about a confrontation between Kurt Russel and Kevin Costner, but in the very beginning a band of five thieves dressed up in five different coloured Elvis costumes shows up, downright looking like an Elvis Squadron. It was the best. This one is a genuinely interesting movie, so I really recommend it.
* the Japanese title is ‘Guts of the Dead’;
** it’s actually his right hand;
*** Japanese title: Captain Supermarket.