Now Showing Aug 25

The Men Who Stare at Goats, Karate Kid and other listings

Now Showing Aug 25

With its peculiar title, it’s hard to imagine what this film is going to be about. It certainly gives off the impression that it might be an independent film. However, it has a star studded cast that includes George Clooney, Ewan McGregor, Best Actor Oscar winner Jeff Bridges, as well as fellow Oscar winner Kevin Spacey. Bringing all of these actors together was their desire to perform in this film based on a true story of American army ‘Jedi Warriors’.

Journalist Bob Wilton (Ewan McGregor) whilst trying to get over his divorce heads to Iraq to research a story. On the way there he meets Lyn Cassady (George Clooney), who gives the appearance of an American businessman, and the two men travel to Iraq together. Lyn reveals that he once was an elite ESP soldier in a clandestine army unit called the New Earth Army. Bob then stumbles upon the story of a lifetime when he finds out that Lyn is currently on a special mission with them and decides to accompany him. During their travels, Bob learns about the surprising training of the New Earth Army back when Lyn used to be a ‘Jedi Warrior’, soldier Larry Hooper (Kevin Spacey) who fell into the Dark Side – as it were – and ‘Jedi Master’ Django, for whom Lyn had the utmost respect. More surprises lie in store on their trip into the desert.

The film is based on Jon Ronson’s non-fiction book of the same name. The book tells of the story of soldiers who undergo training in telekinesis, precognition and clairvoyance based on a New Age ideology of love and peace. While the stories of killing a goat by staring at it, passing through walls and the deadly technique of remote viewing sound like sheer nonsense, to think that this actually went on makes it all the more laughable. This film is top-flight summer entertainment for adults.

The Men Who Stare at Goats

USA, 2010
Japanese title: Yagi to Otoko to Otoko to Kabe to
Opened: Aug 14 
 Director: Grant Heslov
Cast: George Clooney, Ewan McGregor, Jeff Bridges, Kevin Spacey
Distributor: Nikkatsu

Karate Kid

This remake of the 1985 film ‘Karate Kid’ starts Jaden Smith (son of Will Smith) as the elementary school-aged main character, with appearances by kung-fu master, Jackie Chan. 

USA, 2010
Japanese title: Best Kid
Opened: Aug 14 
Director: Harald Zwart
Cast: Jaden Smith, Jackie Chan
Distributor: Sony Pictures Entertainment

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice

This film once again brings together the production, cast and director of the ‘National Treasure’ series. Set in present day New York, this fantasy-fiction tells the story of a nerdy teenager who is recruited as an apprentice to a sorcerer to help win a battle that has been going on for over 800 years.

USA, 2010
Japanese title: Mahoutsukai no Deshi
Opened: Aug 13
Director: John Turteltaub
Cast: Nicholas Cage, Jay Baruchel, Monica Bellucci
Distributor: Walt Disney Studios


This film tells the story of an injured soldier and his wife, following his repatriation after losing his limbs in the Pacific War. This film received much attention after Shinobu Terajima won Best Actress at the 60th Berlin International Film Festival for her portrayal of the wife. Directed by Kouji Wakamatsu (Jitsuroku Rengou Sekigun Asama Sansou heno Michi), this anti-war film exposes the tragedy and senselessness of war.

Japan, 2010
Japanese title: Caterpillar
Opened: Aug 14
Director: Koji Wakamatsu
Cast: Shinobu Terajima, Shima Onishi
Distributor: Wakamatsu Production/Schole Inc.

El Secreto de Sus Ojos (The Secret in Their Eyes)

After retiring from his job as a federal justice agent, this film’s main character begins writing a novel based on an unsolved crime from 25 years before. In confronting the incident, he rekindles a past love. This film won an award for Best Foreign Film at this year’s Academy Awards.

Argentina, 2009
Japanese title: Hitomi no Oku no Himitsu
Opened: Aug 14
Director: Juan José Campanella
Cast: Ricardo Darin, Soldedad Villamil, Javier Godino, Pablo Rago
Distributor: Longride

By Misawo Kasuya
Translated by E. Kavanagh
Please note: All information is correct at the time of writing but is subject to change without notice.


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