[PAST EVENT] Before J-horror: Prewar and Postwar Japanese 'Kaiki' Cinema

October 30, 2014
5pm - 6:30pm
James Blair Hall, Room 223
250 James Blair Dr
Williamsburg, VA 23185Map this location
Along with anime, manga, and video games, Japanese horror films of the past fifteen years have been one of the country's most successful cultural exports. Pictures like The Ring, The Grudge, and Pulse frightened audiences worldwide and were turned into big-budget Hollywood remakes. But while the films that made up the J-horror boom quickly became the object of much international interest and study, the preceding seventy years of popular Japanese horror movie history remains largely unknown outside of Japan.

Come get into the Halloween spirit and learn about 'kaiki' cinema from Mike Crandol, W&M alum 2007 and current University of Minnesota Ph.D. candidate. Mike will give a public lecture on Thursday, October 30, from 5:00 - 6:30, in Blair 223.

This discussion will focus on what came before J-horror, and the dilemmas of applying the English-language generic category 'horror' to the cinema of a non-English speaking culture. We will examine kaiki eiga or 'weird/bizarre films' from the 1920s through the 1960s that represent a genre marked in part by a blending of kabuki stage traditions with the style and conventions of Hollywood horror. We will find out why some American and European horror films get labeled kaiki in Japan while others do not, what conspired to bring about the death of the kaiki genre in the 1970s, and what inspired its ghastly, partial resurrection in the guise of J-horror.