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‘Terracotta Film Club’ Presents Samurai Masterpiece Lady Snowblood

Venue: Prince Charles Cinema London

Date: Wednesday 24 April

Lady Snowblood‘Terracotta Film Club’ will present a Japanese classic from legendary director Toshiya Fujita for its 4th edition.

This blood-splattered Samurai masterpiece from the golden age of Japanese cult cinema is credited as the main inspiration for Quentin Tarantino’s KILL BILL series. LADY SNOWBLOOD is a 1973 Japanese film based on a manga and set in Read more…

Koichi Sakamoto Directs Nao Nagasawa And Ayumi Kinoshita In Travelers: Dimension Police

March 3, 2013 11 comments

Sexy Nagasawa and Kinoshita kick ass in new action-packed sci-fi drama!

Travelers Police Dimension (C)2013 Next Media Animation Limited. All rights reserved. pic 3You may recall in February 2012 when Diverse Japan interviewed Nao Nagasawa (Ninpuu Sentai Hurricaneger, GTO: Great Teacher Onizuka, Playgirls 2012) that she mentioned she was going to Taiwan the following month to begin shooting her next action movie. DJ can now reveal that the film she spoke of is a sci-fi action adventure called Travelers: Dimension Police directed by Read more…

Film Review: Dead Sushi – A Film By Noboru Iguchi Starring Rina Takeda

October 31, 2012 1 comment

More pandemonium from the director of Machine Girl!

The unrelenting filmmaker Noboru Iguchi (TOMIE Unlimited) has presented audiences around the globe with part mechanical geisha that shoot ninja throwing stars from their buttocks; vengeful schoolgirls with lethal weaponry in place of certain limbs; and a motorcycle that transforms into a karate robot. As wacky as these concepts may be, they actually seem quite credible when compared to his latest offering Dead Sushi, an outrageous cinematic feast that has a cute karate girl taking on Read more…

Event Report: Japan Matsuri 2012 At Trafalgar Square London

October 31, 2012 3 comments

Londoners get a taste of Japanese culture!

On Saturday 6th October, under a blissful (almost) clear blue sky, Trafalgar Square in London played host to Japan Matsuri 2012. 70,000 people were expected to come and go throughout the day and it’s quite possible that number was met. Since the first matsuri festival started in 2009, the event’s popularity has grown year after year spreading the rich and vibrant culture of Japan and gaining new fans. Unquestionably this year was Read more…

Japan Matsuri 2012 Trafalgar Square London

September 29, 2012 1 comment

When: Saturday 6 October 2012
Time: 11:00 – 21:00

The much-loved JAPAN MATSURI returns to London on SATURDAY 6 OCTOBER and this year it’s in Trafalgar Square in the centre of London. This dynamic annual event brings the Japanese community and Londoners together to enjoy Japanese food, music, dance and much more. Its new venue in Trafalgar Square will offer a fantastic chance to experience Japan in the Read more…

FREE Prizes: WIN Lady Snowblood 1 & 2 Blu-ray Limited Edition Steelbook – 2 Copies To Giveaway – NOW CLOSED!

September 21, 2012 153 comments

Competition is now closed!

Arrow Films is pleased to announce that Monday September 24th will see the hugely influential Lady Snowblood films lovingly restored and released on Blu-ray (Region 2) for the very first time, anywhere in the world and will be available as both a Limited Edition Blu-ray SteelBook™ and a 3-disc Blu-ray & DVD Dual Format Set.

Limited Edition Steelbook: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Snowblood-Limited-Edition-SteelBook-Blu-Ray/dp/B007XRX88E/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1348227792&sr=8-1

3-disc Blu-ray & DVD Dual Format Set: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Lady-Snowblood-Format-Edition-Blu-Ray/dp/B007XRX9AG/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1348227792&sr=8-2 Read more…

DVD Review: Crows Zero II – A Sequel By Takashi Miike

July 9, 2012 1 comment

A very different beast from its predecessor!

Takashi Miike returns to the Suzuran High School for Boys for a second slice of all-action fighting in this sequel to his 2007 hit Crows Zero. Having fought their way to the top of the tree in the first film, Genji (Shun Oguri) and his GPS alliance struggle to hold the school together in the face of an all-out attack by the students of the Hosen Academy, the ‘Army of Killers’. There is a long-lived hatred between the two schools, but also an uneasy truce.  However, in his desire to rule Suzuran completely, Genji mistakenly breaks the truce and has to prepare for all-out war between the two schools.  Meanwhile, Read more…

DVD Review: Crows Zero – A Film By Takashi Miike

April 17, 2012 4 comments

The J-Rock soundtrack is as hard-hitting as the fight scenes!

Based on the bestselling manga by Hiroshi Takahashi (screenwriter of the original Japanese Ring movies), Crows Zero, directed by Takashi Miike (Audition, Ichi the Killer), became a box office hit in Japan and spawned an equally successful sequel.

The notorious Suzuran Senior High School for Boys is Japan’s lowest achieving and most violent school, nicknamed “The School of Crows” after its students’ tendency to band together in Read more…

Interview: Maki Tsukada – Olympic & World Judo Champion

April 2, 2012 3 comments

“The more confident I am, the more strict I am with myself!” Maki Tsukada

Female judoka Maki Tsukada has become one of the most revered figures of the popular martial art deviced by Jigoro Kano. During her competition years, Tsukada was a force to be reckoned with – an absolute powerhouse who has won a mass of awards. She won the 2003 World Judo Championship Games and became a gold medallist in the Women’s Judo +78kg catergory at the Read more…

HYPER JAPAN 2012 Spring Photos Now Uploaded!

March 27, 2012 6 comments

A picture can say a thousand words!

At last Diverse Japan has uploaded photographs taken at HYPER JAPAN 2012 Spring, which took place at Brompton Hall at Earls Court, London on 24th – 26th February. There are around 80 photos in all including many of the special guests: Director Miki Satoshi, actress Eri Fuse, Judo Gold Medallist Maki Tsukada and cute J-pop singstress Natsuko Aso, as well as a nice selection of cosplayers and Read more…

Video Interview: Antony Cummins – Author & Ninja Historian

February 10, 2012 2 comments

Antony Cummins disples the many myths surrounding the ninja!

For centuries the legend of the ninja has been steeped in mystery, infused by lies fabricated in Japan throughout the 50′s and 60′s, not to mention the countless films produced in the West and Middle East during the 70′s and 80′s making stars of actors like Sho Kosugi (Pray For Death and Revenge of the Ninja).

The image of the ninja dressed in black from head to toe scurrying up walls with a katana on his back has now Read more…

DVD Review: Ninja Battle – A Film By Seiji Chiba Starring Actress/Idol Aki Ito

February 9, 2012 6 comments

More ninja action from cult director Seiji Chiba!

In 1581, the Iga province of Japan was annihilated by Oda Nobunaga and the Koga allied forces with many blaming the Iga’s downfall on the treachery of the Iga shinobi Shimoyama Kai. Prior to these events, a team of ninja agents were dispatched on a covert mission to prevent Oda and the Koga from gaining the upper hand. This is their story…

When a small group of Iga ninjas find their comrade Yoshimori lying dead in a cave next to a bound a gagged girl, they immediately suspect her of somehow being involved in Read more…

Exclusive Interview: Nao Nagasawa – Actress, Singer And Idol – Super Sentai And Kamen Rider Heroine

February 5, 2012 41 comments

“I want to be in a Hollywood movie in the future.” Nao Nagasawa

Nao Nagasawa (長澤 奈央 ), best known to her fans for her roles in various Super Sentai and Kamen Rider TV shows, is someone with more than just a pretty face and a gorgeous body. She’s been a recording artist, releasing singles like “Kiss, Kiss” and “Game”, and a dancer. But it’s her skills as an actress were she excels and has even led to her winning the Best Actress Award at the Myrtle Film Festival for her English-speaking lead role in Read more…

Book Launch & Lecture: Tengu: The Shamanic And Esoteric Origins Of The Japanese Martial Arts By Roald Knutsen

November 24, 2011 1 comment

The Japan Foundation in association with Global Oriental / Brill

Venue: The Japan Foundation, London

Date: 6th December 2011

Time: From 6pm

This fully illustrated volume is the first in-depth study in English to examine the warrior and shamanic characteristics and significance of tengu in the martial art culture (bugei) of Read more…

Martial Arts Weapons And Their Lack Of Effectiveness

November 17, 2011 4 comments

Becoming over-dependent on martial arts weapons is dangerous!

Good Times With Weapons?

Possibly the only thing cooler than having the ability to use your arms and legs to defend yourself is being proficient in martial arts weaponry. There are a host of interesting weapons including the Kama blade, Nunte spear/dagger, the Naginata sword or the Bo Staff. Then there is the legendary Nunchaku. A feeling of pride and confidence swells in your chest as you become an expert in Read more…

Categories: Martial Arts

DVD/ Blu-ray Review: Harakiri (1962 – Masters of Cinema)

September 28, 2011 15 comments

Winner of the 1963 Special Jury Prize at Cannes – A masterclass in filmmaking!

Directed by master filmmaker Makati Koboyashi, Harakiri stars Tatsuya Nakadai as masterless samurai Hanshiro Tsugumo. The film is set in 17th – century Japan, a time of peacefulness which has resulted in many feudal warriors becoming masterless and having to commit harakiri (ritual suicide) at clan estates. Those that do not honour this code face poverty and hunger since the law prohibits them from serving another lord without the consent of their Read more…

Categories: Film, Martial Arts, Reviews

Interview: Minoru Kanetsuka Sensei 7th Dan British Aikido Federation

September 16, 2011 4 comments

“The most important thing is gasho (press hands together in prayer) and rei (etiquette and good manners).” (Minoru Kanetsuka Sensei)

Born in 1939, aikidoka Minoru Kanetsuka Sensei has taught aikido to bodyguards of the royal household of Nepal and self-defense at a police training school in calcutta. He came to Britain in 1972 and became Technical Director of British Akikiai Federation in 1977.

Over the years, Kanetsuka Sensei has contributed immensely to aikido and has devised a style all of his own whilst stressing the importance of the basic principles and methods of this highly respectable and Read more…

Categories: Interviews, Martial Arts

Samurai Warriors At Buckinghamshire County Museum

August 9, 2011 5 comments

6th August 2011 - January 2012 Church Street, Aylesbury HP20 2QP

A thrilling display of traditional Japanese martial arts will be taking place at Buckinghamshire County Museum on Saturday (6 August), to celebrate the launch of the museum’s latest exhibition Samurai: Warriors of Ancient Japan.

The exhibition features an unique collection of privately owned Japanese arms and armour, displayed together for the first time. The collection includes full suits of the historic Gusoku armour, beautifully decorated military equipment, and examples of the katana (the iconic samurai curved sword) made by some of the finest modern swordsmiths, showing just how deadly art can be. Read more…

The Samurai: Honour And Pride That Continues To Inspire Generations

August 1, 2011 10 comments

The Sword is the Soul of the Samurai.

Samurai warriors were the elite of four classes of Japanese feudal society; samurai, farmers, craftsmen, and then merchants. They were expected to bring security to the members of the other three classes.

The term, samurai, is a derivative of the Japanese verb for service, “saburau”, and literally means “one who is a servant”, thus is how they began, as ’servants’ to Emperor Tenmu back in the 7th century.

Samurai were inspired by Bushido (Military-Knight-Ways) is an unwritten code of moral principles which the knights (samurai) were required or instructed to observe. Bushido made the sword its emblem of power and prowess. Read more…

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