Event: N.E. Convention Manga and Anime II

***This Event Has Now Passed***

 

Event: North East Convention Manga and Anime II

What: Anime convention, cosplay, art, competitions

Where: The Moon Gallery & Newcastle City Library

When: Sunday 17 March 2013

Tickets: £10 in advance, £15 on the day (Buy Here)

Website: http://www.necon.co.uk/
“NECON in her second year will be hosted in The Moon gallery and Newcastle City Library with lots of guest, artists, competitions and music . The registration process start in January and will last till 2nd March.

Just like last time, we’ll have Manga! Music! Anime! Pokky! Ponies! Artsszs! Cats! Cosplay! Onigiri! Books! Tentacles! Lolita! Chillin’ space! Figures! Ayumi Hamasaki! Goodies! MANGA!! MOE!!! ANONS!! NYANCATS!!! PONIES!!!! COSPLAY!!!! ROBOTS!!! KYARY PAMYU PAMYU!! NEKO MIMI MODE!! JAPAN!!! SPACE!!! PLATFORMS! LENSES!! ALL THE CAPS!!!! GET GETTING ALL OF YOUR AWESOME READY!! BECAUSE WE’RE ABOUT TO HAVE ANOTHER OF THE BEST DAYS EVER!!!

Anybody who bought a ticket for the event can participate in the cosplay. You have to register for this competition when you arrive showing your ticket.

For the Art Competition: Send your work by email or post to 19 Saville Row Newcastle, NE1 8JE by 10th March 2013.”  – Text Courtesy of NECon

NECON

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Film: Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme

 

 

Film Event: Once Upon a Time in Japan- Reinventing the Past Through the Eyes of Japanese Contemporary Filmmakers

When: Sun 3 March – Sun 24 March

Where: Tyneside Cinema  (Directions)

Extra Info: Buy tickets for four films in the programme and get the fifth FREE! (Only at the Tyneside Box Office in person)

Website:  Please click on the film titles below

 

We are very pleased to announce that Geordie Japan is working closely with The Tyneside Cinema to promote this exciting touring film festival! Once Upon A Time In Japan aims to explore the past through the eyes of modern Japanese film makers and includes some gems that have never been screened in the UK before! We can’t wait for this event, it’s been hard to keep it under wraps until now! But we will be providing you will all the information you will need leading up to and during the programme. See you there!

 

The films are as follows;

(Please find synopsis of the films further down the page)

 

Bubble Fiction: Boom Or Bust (Tasuo Baba) – Sun 3 March, 3.30pm

Please note, Bubble Fiction is listed in the Tyneside brochure as SAT 3 MARCH, but it is Sun 3 March

Castle Under Fiery Skies (Mitsutoshi Tanaka) – Wed 6 March, 5.45pm

Kaidan Horror Classics (Various) – Sun 10 March, 3.30pm

Rebirth (Izuru Narushima) – Wed 13 March, 5.45pm

Mai Mai Miracle (Sunao Katabuchi) – Sun 17 March, 3.30pm

Zero Focus (Isshin Inudo) – Wed 20 March, 5.45pm

Ninja Kids!!! (Takashi Miike) -Sun 24 March. 3.30pm

 

“Since 2004, the Japan Foundation, London has organised a Japanese film programme in close partnership with distinguished film venues and programme advisors in the UK. Each year, a programme of six to seven, largely contemporary, Japanese titles are put together under a carefully chosen theme to highlight trends in Japanese cinema and showcase the versatility and uniqueness displayed by Japanese filmmakers. The programme also showcases directors and works which, while being worthwhile, may have slipped under the radar of other film festivals or programmes.” – Japan Foundation

 

Bubble Fiction

Bubble Fiction: Boom or Bust (Baburu e go!: Taimu mashin wa doramu-shiki)
Dir. Yasuo Baba
Cast: Ryoko Hirosue, Hiroshi Abe, Hiroko Yakushimaru
2007 / 116min / Colour / English Subtitles
With the Japanese economy on the blink of collapse with 80 trillion yen in debt, government bureaucrat Shimokawaji (Hiroshi Abe) conjures the crazy idea of going back in time to 1990 in an attempt to prevent Japan’s financial collapse. Luckily, Shimokawaji’s ex-lover Mariko (Hiroko Yakushimaru) has a created one of the most unusual time machines; a DeLorean-esque washing machine, transporting anyone who dons a wetsuit and climbs into the drum some twenty years back in time. Having lost Mariko somewhere in the past, Mariko’s daughter (Ryoko Hirosue), a ditzy bar hostess, spins back to 1990 to the height of the bubble economy, teaming up with a 17 years younger Shimokawaji to look for her mother and prevent Japan’s ‘bubble’ economy from bursting. Yasuo Baba’s 2007 time-travel comedy is a hilarious satire of bubble-era Japan, filled with nostalgic gags, retro fashion and music, guaranteed to lift your spirits and cast away any recession blues!

 

Castle under Fiery Skies (Katen no shiro)Castle Under Fiery Skies 2
Dir. Mitsutoshi Tanaka
Cast: Toshiyuki Nishida, Shinobu Otake, Saki Fukuda, Isao Natsuyagi, Renji Ishibashi
2009 / 139min / Colour / English Subtitles
In the Age of the Country at War, peasant carpenter Motaemon Okabe (Toshiyuki Nishida) renowned for his ‘divine hands’ is summoned by Lord Nobunaga to oversee the mammoth task of the construction of the fabled 7 story fortress Azuchi Castle, a huge castle to be built on Mount Azuchi overseeing and guarding the then-capital Kyoto. However Motaemon must overcome some persistent obstacles on the path towards its completion. This film introduces a fascinating insight into the world of traditional Japanese architecture. Mitsutoshi Tanaka’s well-crafted spin on the period drama genre is a heart-warming tale of one ordinary man’s skill and determination, and journey towards success beyond his normal capabilities.

 

Kaidan Horror Classics (Ayashiki bungo kaidan)Kaidan Horror Classics
Dir. Shinya Tsukamoto, Sang-il Lee, Hirokazu Kore-eda
2010 / 121min / Colour / English Subtitles
Three haunting stories written by Japanese literary masters, reinterpreted and revived by some of Japan’s greatest directors, Kaidan Horror Classics is a collection of beautiful yet terrifying tales of the darkness of the human heart.

The Whistler (Hazakura to mateki)
Dir. Shinya Tsukamoto
2010 / 36min / Colour / English Subtitles
Yuko (Aoba Kawai) spends her days caring for her terminally ill younger sister Itsue (Eri Tokunaga), however upon finding a bundle of anonymous letters addressed to Itsue, Yuko is determine to find out from whom and why have they been sent. Based on the original story by Dazai Osamu, Shinya Tsukamoto’s distinctive cinematic style portrays the inner rage of adolescents towards those dear to them.

The Nose (Hana)
Dir. Sang-il Lee
2010 / 34min / Colour / English Subtitles
A monk named Zenchi (Yutaka Matsushige) attempts to save a child from drowning in a river, but when the child sees the enormous nose he was concealing the monk impulsively pushes him away. Racked with guilt, Zenchi becomes fearful of silently watching eyes. Inspired by an early short story by Ryunosuke Akutagawa, this loose interpretation retains the protagonist’s predicament, and includes elegant cinematography, reminiscent of classic period films.

The Days After (Nochi no hi)
Dir. Hirokazu Kore-eda
2010 / 51min / Colour / English Subtitles
A child appears before a young couple who lost their beloved son at an early age. Is he the reincarnation of their son, or a ghost? This strange and serene story of a family’s days spent with the son who seems to have come back to life, is adapted from the fantasy stories by Murou Saisei.

 

Rebirth (Yokame no semi)Rebirth
Dir. Izuru Narushima
Cast: Mao Inoue, Hiromi Nagasaku, Konomi Watanabe, Eiko Koike, Hitori Gekidan
2011 / 147min / Colour / English Subtitles
Kiwako (Hiromi Nagasaku) runs away with her married lover’s baby, spending four years on the run and bringing up the child as her own until one day she is arrested. The child abductee Erina (Mao Inoue) is returned to her birth parents, but is never able to come to terms with what happened in her childhood. Now grown up, Erina travels to the town where she grew up to discover the truth about her past. Based on the popular novel by Mitsuyo Kakuta, Izuru Narushima’s acclaimed drama questioning nature over nurture scooped an astounding 11 awards at the 2012 Japanese Academy Awards 2012, including best film and best director. A huge hit both critically and commercially, the film also ranked first in the Readers’ Choice awards in Kinema Junpo 2011.

 

Mai Mai Miracle (Maimai shinko to sennen no maho)Mai_Mai_Miracle
Dir. Sunao Katabuchi
Cast (voice): Mayuko Fukuda, Nako Mizusawa, Ei Morisako, Manami Honjo
2009 / 93min / Colour / English Subtitles
Inspired by her grandfather’s stories, nine-year-old Shinko journeys into the past through her magical method of time travel, conjured entirely by her vivid imaginings of the past. Upon making a new friend with the upper class Kiiko, they quickly discover they both have a fascination with history and what happened in the past, and transport back to the town a thousand years before, almost as if their dreams could become a reality. Adapted from Nobuko Takagi’s famous novel, Mai Mai Miracle is a beautifully animated nostalgic tale of friendship in post-war Japan. A former assistant of the great Hayao Miyazaki, director Sunao Katabuchi recreates 1950s south western Japan in its full-animated glory, inviting the audience to embark on a miraculous journey into the past with young Shinko.

 

Zero Focus (Zero no shoten)Zero Focus
Dir. Isshin Inudo
Cast: Tae Kimura, Ryoko Hirosue, Miki Nakatani
2009 / 131min / Colour / English Subtitles
Teiko (Ryoko Hirosue) has her life thrown into turmoil when her newly wed husband of only a week leaves on a business trip and never returns. Brought together by an arranged marriage and knowing little of her husband’s past, Teiko embarks on a journey to discover the dark truth of her husband’s sudden disappearance. Uncovering evidence to suggest her husband was not who she had thought, Teiko learns that her husband was close to two women: elegant aristocrat Sachiko (Miki Nakatani) and receptionist Hisako (Tae Kimura); two mysterious women who may know more than they protest. Isshin Inudo’s gripping Hitchcockian murder-mystery set in the beautiful location of post war Kanazawa features an all-star female cast in an adaptation of the celebrated crime novel by Seicho Matsumoto and revival of the classic 1961 Yoshitaro Nomura film.

 

Ninja Kids!!! (Nintama rantaro)NINJA KIDS!!!
Dir. Takashi Miike
Cast: Shindo Nakamura, Naoto Takenaka, Susumu Terajima, Hiroki Matsukata, Mikijiro Hira
2011 / 100min / Colour / English Subtitles
Set in the early 16thcentury, the story follows little Rantaro (Seishiro Kato), a young aspiring ninja born into a family of farmers in disguise. Blessed with opportunity to leave his family’s farm and enrol into a Ninja Academy run by Denzo Yamada (Susumu Terajima), Rantaro plunges into a crazy school packed full of explosive and dangerous tasks and madcap teachers. However, when a rival clan arrives, the school’s future is thrown in jeopardy and it’s down to Rantaro and his loveable classmates to save the day. This wacky live-action adaptation of the long-running children’s cartoon Nintama Rantaro is full of slapstick gags and comic schemes from the warped mind of the ever prolific director Takashi Miike, guaranteed to entertain kids and big kids alike! 

 

Synopsis courtesy of The Japan Foundation

 

20 Facts About Astro Boy

 

This Friday at the Star and Shadow Cinema, the film The Echo Of Astro Boy’s Footsteps will play, about the sound designer for the anime ‘Astro Boy’ who  effectively created the soundtrack for all anime to follow and his sudden retreat from the public eye in the 1980’s.

But what is Astro Boy? And what should you know about it before you watch the film? Well luckily for you Geordie Japan is back with another in our 20 facts series; with 20 fun facts about Astro Boy!

 

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[Kids Club] Arrietty

***THIS EVENT HAS NOW PASSED***

Film: Arretty (借りぐらしのアリエッティ)

When: Saturday 15th December – 10:30am

Where: Tyneside Cinema  (Directions)

Extra Info: This screening is dubbed in English, only for children or adults accompanying children

Price: £3.20 (all ages)

*Children under 14 must be accompanied by an adult. adults only admitted to Children’s Film Club screenings when accompanying children.

“Residing quietly beneath the floorboards are little people who live undetected in a secret world to be discovered, where the smallest may stand tallest of all. From the legendary Studio Ghibli (“Spirited Away,” “Ponyo”)  comes “The Secret World of Arrietty,” an animated adventure based on Mary Norton’s acclaimed children’s book series “The Borrowers.”

Arrietty (voice of Bridgit Mendler), a tiny, but tenacious 14-year-old, lives with her parents (voices of Will Arnett and Amy Poehler) in the recesses of a suburban garden home, unbeknownst to the homeowner and her housekeeper (voice of Carol Burnett). Like all little people, Arrietty remains hidden from view, except during occasional covert ventures beyond the floorboards to “borrow” scrap supplies like sugar cubes from her human hosts. But when 12-year-old Shawn (voice of David Henrie), a human boy who comes to stay in the home, discovers his mysterious housemate one evening, a secret friendship blossoms. If discovered, their relationship could drive Arrietty’s family from the home and straight into danger.” – Comingsoon.net

Arrietty is a sweet and beautiful film that will be great viewing for children (and us adults). I caught the film when it was first released a few years back and honestly I can’t recommend the film enough.  If you’re sad that you can only attend with a child but still want to see the film, why not pick up a copy at HMV? Either way, let us know what you think by tweeting us @GeordieJapan — GJ

20 Facts About Ghost In The Shell

 

This weekend the Tyneside Cinema is screening the classic anime Ghost In The Shell as well as the original Godzilla for just 75p each! We already covered some facts about Godzilla a few months back, but here are 20 Ghost in the Shell facts to get you up to speed for Sunday’s early morning screening.

 

  1. Ghost In The Shell (攻殻機動隊) began as a serialised managa story  in 1989 in the Japanese magazine “Young Magazine” (ヤングマガジン)
  2. The series was created and written by Masamune Shirow (士郎 正宗), also known for his manga ‘Appleseed’
  3. Ghost In The Shell was turned into a anime feature film in 1995 and was directed by Mamoru Oshii (押井 守)
  4. Oshii regularly uses quotes from the bible in his films, Ghost in the Shell’s quote comes from I Corinthians 13
  5. The film was highly praised by Western directors, with James Cameron calling it “the first truly adult animation film to reach a level of literary and visual excellence.”
  6. The film was highly influential on The Matrix, which ‘borrows’ several key concepts and camera shots
  7. According to the soundtrack’s liner notes, the haunting choral song that plays throughout the film is a wedding song, sung to get rid of evil influences.
  8. The entire film was reworked into Ghost in the Shell 2.0 (攻殻機動隊 2.0) in 2008. The whole film was reanimated using new CGI technology, the score was re-recorded and some of the voice actors replaced.
  9. One of the first films to mix cel animation with CGI
  10. Ghost in the Shell was the first anime film to ever be released in Japan, the USA and the UK at the same time. The aim was to bring manga to the mainstream in the West.
  11. The brand of beer that is drunk within the film is the real life brand San Miguel
  12. The film was actually less successful inside Japan than in the rest of the world, when the sequel was released in Japan it was only titled ‘Innocence’ and lost the ‘Ghost in the Shell 2:’ prefix.
  13. Although never specified in the film, it has been long rumored amongst fans that the film is set in futuristic Kobe.
  14. Hollywood has purchased the rights to a live action remake, although news has been quiet on the project recently
  15. The character of Motoko never blinks in the film, unlike other characters. This was a deliberate move to make her appear more “doll-like”
  16. A song played over the credits is credited to the band ‘Passengers’, in reality it is a combined effort between U2 and Brian Eno
  17. Weirdly, in Japan, two versions of the VHS were sold. One in Japanese, and one in English with Japanese subtitles. Commonplace now on DVD’s but extremely unusual back in 1995 on video!
  18. A television series, Ghost in the Shell: Standalone Complex followed the film, the TV series follows a different story arc and has far more in common with the original manga.
  19. The film cost around $10 million US Dollars to animate and produce
  20. Three video games based on the franchise have been produced for various PlayStation consoles. The first game featured specially animated story sections in keeping with the style of the film.

So there you have it. If you are going to see either Ghost in the Shell or Godzilla on Sunday morning, we will see you there!

 

Japanese Horror Films

 
 
Being October, and just over a week away from Halloween you’re probably wanting to get in the Halloween mood, and seeing as you are visiting this site you most likely like Japanese things, so why not combine the two with a good old scare-fest of Japanese films to chill you to your core!

Please note that this is not intended to be a definitive list of any kind, merely some suggestions. Also ‘horror’ is a rather loose genre, some films here may not be simply regarded as horror films but all contain strong elements of horror.

For those who want classic horror

Ugetsu Monogatari

 Ugetsu Monogatari (雨月物語)

After a raid on their village, Genjuro and Tobei move their families and pot making business to the city. The city is not kind to them and they send their wives home promising to return home with money soon…but who is the mysterious Lady Wakasa and why is she so interested in Genjuro’s pots…

1953, Dir. Kemji Mozoguchi (溝口 健二) — TrailerBuy Here.

 

Kwaidan  (怪談)

Made up of four chilling stories: ‘Black Hair’ in which a man returns to his ex-wife after leaving his new lover only to find something is very different with her. ‘The Woman and The Snow’ in which a young man is saved from a snowstorm by a spirit but he can never tell anyone about it…until one day he does. ‘ Hoichi the Earless’ in which a blind musician is slowly having his life force sucked away by ghosts & ‘In a Cup of Tea’ in which a samurai is haunted by the spirit of a dead samurai.. 

1964, Dir. Masaki Kobayashi (小林 正樹) — TrailerBuy Here.

 

Onibaba (鬼婆)

In 14th century Japan a civil war wages, a mother and daughter do their best to survive and prey on hapless samurai, killing them and selling their armor for money. One day a friend of one of these samurai turns up and the women learn what has become of him…

1964, Dir. Kaneto Shindo (新藤 兼人) — TrailerBuy Here.

  

For those who want films from the J-Horror boom

Ringu

Ringu (リング)

A reporter begins investigating an urban legend of a cursed video tape. She quickly finds herself in possession of the tape but her young son watches it first, now she must race against time to save his life… 

1998, Dir. Hideo Nakata (中田 秀夫) — TrailerBuy Here.

 

Audition (オーディション)

At the encouragement of his family and friends Ayoama begins to search for a new wife years after being widowed. His friend suggests setting up a fake movie audition to meet women and Ayoama falls for a beautiful ex-ballerina named Asami, on the surface she appears to be the perfect woman… (Warning: The DVD cover contains a big spoiler for the film, try to avoid it)

1998, Dir. Takashi Miike (三池 崇史) — Trailer (Spoilers!) — Buy Here.

 

Exte: Hair Extensions (エクステ)

A man obsessed with hair steals the hair from a newly killed woman and adds it to his collection,he sells parts of the hair to hair salons to be used as extensions, only this hair starts possessing women, driving them insane or worse… 

2007, Dir. Sion Sono (園 子温) — TrailerBuy Here.

 

For those who want contemporary horror

Confessions

 

Confessions (告白)

A class of high school students hold a dark secret relating to their former teacher and a series of events that shocked the school… One of the most stylish films ever made.

2010, Dir. Tetsuya Nakashima (中島哲也) — Trailer (Spoilers!) — Buy Here.

 

Cold Fish (冷たい熱帯魚)

When a man’s teenage daughter is caught stealing she is offered a job in a fish store to set her straight. The man soon discovers that the owners of the fish store have a dark secret however…

2010, Dir. Sion Sono (園 子温) — TrailerBuy Here.

  

For those who want anime horror

Vampire Hunter D

 

Vampire Hunter D (吸血鬼バンパイアハンターD)

In a strange future time the world is ruled by supernatural forces, a young girl requests the help of the mysterious ‘D’ to hunt down the vampire who bit her in order to save her from becoming one of the creatures… 

1989, Dir. Toyoo Ashida (芦田 豊雄) — TrailerBuy Here.

 

Perfect Blue (パーフェクトブルー)

A retired pop singer turned actress’s sense of reality is shaken when she is stalked by an obsessed fan and seemingly a ghost of her past.

1997, Dir. Satoshi Kon (今 敏) — TrailerBuy Here.

  

For those who don’t want subtitles 

(A selection of the better American Remakes)

The Grudge

The Grudge

The closest thing to watching the Japanese original, made by the same director with the same vision. An American nurse living and working in Tokyo is exposed to a mysterious supernatural curse, one that locks a person in a powerful rage before claiming their life and spreading to another victim.

2004, Dir. Takashi Shimizu (清水 崇) — Trailer Buy Here.

 

The Ring

A fairly faithful remake of the original. A young journalist must investigate a mysterious videotape which seems to cause the death of anyone in a week of viewing it, now she must race against time to stop the tape’s effects.

2002, Dir. Gore Verbinski — Trailer Buy Here.

 

Dark Water

A mother and daughter, still wounded from a bitter custody dispute, hole up in a run-down apartment building. Adding further drama to their plight, they are targeted by the ghost of former resident.

2005, Dir. Walter Salles  — TrailerBuy Here.

  

For those who want something unique

Shirome

Shirome  (シロメ)

The  real life J-pop band ‘Momoiro Clover‘ are the victims of this horror mockumentary in which the girls are forces to investigate a haunted school for a supposed Japanese television series. In the haunted house the girls hope (or rather don’t hope) to find Shirome, a spirit that can grant wishes, but only if the person asking completely believes in the spirit… This is not available on DVD in the UK, the full movie is available below from youtube. Please not that we are not hosting any content and do not endorse piracy.

2010, Dir. Kōji Shiraishi (白石晃士) — Watch the full movie here

 

Uzumaki/Spiral  (うずまき)

After coming home to find her father obsessively staring at a snail Kirie notices the whole town appears to slowly becoming obsessed in the same way with the shape of a spiral and begin turning into spiral’s themselves. Totally bonkers and more than a little scary.

2000, Dir. ‘Higuchinsky’ — TrailerBuy Here.

 

House  (ハウス)

When Oshare finds out that her Father’s girlfriend is joining them on their summer trip, she and her friends decide to go to her aunt’s farmhouse instead. From the moment they arrive, strange things begin to happen and the girls slowly begin to realize Oshare’s Aunt may not have their best interest in mind. A cult classic that has to be seen to be believed!

1977 Dir. Nobuhikio Obayashi  (大林 宣彦) — TrailerBuy Here.  

 

For those who want something not scary

Happiness of the Katakuris

The Happiness of The Katakuris  (カタクリ家の幸福)

A family moves to the country to run a rustic mountain inn when, to their horror, the customers begin befalling sudden and unlikely fates. An utterly entertaining film that smashes horror, musicals, comedies, mysteries, angry volcanos, a charismatic dog and a Japanese man who claims to be a member of the British royal family… 

2001 Dir. Takashi Miike  (三池 崇史) — Trailer Buy Here.  

 So there you go, I hope that has given you some insperation for some Japanese Halloween scare-fests!

 

Want to recommend a Japanese scary movie to other users? Leave a comment below!  
 

SunnyCon 2013

***This Event Has Now Passed***

 

Event:  Sunnycon 2013

When: Saturday & Sunday 23rd-24th March 2013

Where: Seaburn Center (Directions)

Website: http://www.sunnycon.co.uk

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SunderlandConvention

Price: £30 VIP, £25 13+, £10 Under 12’s

Tickets: available online here

Returning to Sunderland for it’s second year SunnyCon looks to take over the city once again, a must for anyone in the region interested in Anime, Manga or Japan in general.

“After the roaring success from last year’s SunnyCon, on Saturday & Sunday 23rd-24th March 2013 we will be back and bigger than ever hosting SunnyCon2. Our guest list so far includes Vic Mignogna, Ginny McQueen & Colleen Clinkenbeard.

Over the two days there will be new and exciting demonstrations, panels, Martials arts, shows & more as well as retail stalls, artist stands & a gaming area. We will have some delicious Japanese cuisine, so go on spoil yourself! Keep an eye on the events page to see what will be happening.

The event will be taking place in the Seaburn Centre situated on Sunderland’s coast line. Nearby we have a large Morrison’s supermarket. The event is from 9am for V.I.P ticket holders and from 10am for everyone else until 6pm. Keep it here and on our social networks for the latest updates including guests, events and other convention announcements.

Treat yourself! Come a long and immerse yourself in fascinating Japanese tradition.” – SunnyCon

How to be Kawaii (In Toon)

 

Kawaii – loveable, cute or adorable.

–          Prominent culture of Japanese behaviour, toys, food, clothes entertainment

–          Kanji ‘ka’ = acceptable

–          Kanji ‘ai’ = love

–          From The Tale of Genji – referring to pitiable and docile qualities

 

Today Kawaii can be seen everywhere. You don’t have to go to Japan to witness Kawaii as some the best loved characters in the West are considered Kawaii. This includes Pikachu from Pokémon, Kirby, Hello Kitty, Miffy, Snoopy, Minnie Mouse and even the Teletubbies. Though some of these are not of Japanese descent, their overall cuteness has been celebrated as part of this phenomenon.

 

A typical Manga Kawaii character, this example is from ‘Angel Beats’

 

However it isn’t just batting your eyelids and talking cute, Kawaii is a heavily influenced DIY genre. This is all Japanese influenced, as they have a strong culture of recycling, so for the average student who has limited funds, Kawaii has embraced the idea of recycling your old clothes, jewellery, material and in some cases rugs to add to your fashion.

So how does one become Kawaii? There are so many different types of Kawaii, but here are a few overall pointers in Kawaii fashion to help you get started and create your own Kawaii style.

 

  1. Big eyes. Big eyes are reminiscent of Disney Princess’ and this is the same in Kawaii. Big eyes represent wonderment, innocence and beauty, so grab some mascara and fake eyelashes and get some big beautiful eyes going
  2. Long hair. Long hair is also associated with innocence and Kawaii. This is because most little girls have long hair, because long hair means you are a girl not a boy. The longer the hair, the more natural your look, as you have not been touched by the material human world. This is also reminiscent of Rapunzel, the Princess at the top of the tower who uses her lush long hair to let the prince climb up and save her.
  3. Pastels. Pastel colours, often light pink, blue, green, purple and yellow are used in Kawaii as they refer to baby pink and blue. Pastels are soft colours that often make one look slimmer and fairer, showing a sweet natural look again.
  4. Bows and ribbons. Bows are a must in cuteness, especially worn in the hair. But bows and ribbons bows are incorporated onto shoes, clothes, jewellery and bags.
  5. Hearts. Hearts obviously represent love, and thus are used on everything including nails; to give a very cute look.
  6. Overall fairy tale. It seems that fairy tales such as Alice in Wonderland and most Disney Princess movies are referenced in one way or another. This is because they represent innocence, kindness and above all being a princess, which is what Kawaii is all about.
The Kawaii look demonstrated by idol singer Kyary Pamyu Pamyu

The Kawaii look demonstrated by idol singer Kyary Pamyu Pamyu

 

Most elements of Kawaii are inherited from Manga and Anime cartoons, due to their upbeat sweet attitude and reference to big Western eyes. The Manga look is often considered and ideal in Japan and is perpetuated by many ‘idol’ singers and celebrities.

 

So there’s a little guide on how to be Kawaii. But here are a few locations in our lovely Newcastle Upon Tyne City Centre to get you going

 

Fenwick. 39 Northumberland Street, Newcastle Upon Tyne, England, NE1 1AR

On the second floor, at the back, Fenwick has its own Haberdashery and Fabric section. There you can find a lovely arrangement of ribbons, sold by the meter and fabrics with different ranging prices to add or start to your clothes.

 

John Lewis.
Eldon Square, Newcastle-upon-Tyne NE99 1AB

John Lewis on the second floor, at the back also has a Haberdashery section. They have ribbons, brought by the pack, a larger range of fabric and at the moment small tubs with assorted buttons in them!

 

Grainger Market. Grainger Market, Newcastleupon Tyne, NE1

The Grainger Market has a number of fabric stores which a cheaper than Fenwick and John Lewis as it is a market stall. You may have to snoop round a little more but they have some amazing bargains, and add to your cheap DIY Kawaii style.

 

Claire’s Accessories. Eldon Square, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 7XJ

Claire’s have a number of cute cheap headbands with bows and animals on, perfect for a Kawaii look. They also have hair extensions in store, so you can accessories your hair to match your Kawaii outfit!

 

Toki Yoki. 1B Sidgate , Eldon Square , Newcastle upon Tyne , NE1 7XF

Toki Yokihas some very cute clips, scarves and headbands in Big baby style to Kawaii it up. It also has some signature big geeky glasses, giving you an extra edge in Kawaii innocence, with a smart style.

 

–Aisha Din

Club Night: Harajuku

***THIS EVENT HAS NOW PASSED***

 

Event: Harjuku Anime Attacks Club Night

When: Friday 5th October – 7pm-1am

Where: Gateshead Old Town Hall (Directions)

Website: http://www.asaplive.com/whats-on/events/harajuku–gateshead-central-library

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/258836280889407/

Price: £6/£5 if in Cosplay

Restrictions: 18+ Only

Tickets: available at Gateshead Central Library (tel 0191 4338420), Reflex Records in Newcastle City Centre or online

 

In association with the GCL Japanese Festival, Anime Attacks presents a very special Japanese themed club night named Harajuku!

 


“HARAJUKU! is the UK’s notorious Japanese themed club night! This cosplay and dress up event features a big Japanese theme, plus Karaoke Zone, Multiplayer Gaming, Indie, Jpop, Geishas, Origami and Live Bands!
As the latest installment, Harajuku! travels to Gateshead. The event celebrates Japanese wonders like Geishas, Lolita’s, Comics, Gaming, Origami, Karaoke, Manga, Art with a mix of Live Bands, plus indie and Jpop DJs thrown in for good measure.

This is definitely one unique event which is not to be missed. Party goers mix together different styles and influences of Harajuku! fashion in a celebration of Japan, so make sure you’re ready with bold colours and wicked style.

Master decorators bring Japan closer to you. Sing along in the Karaoke Zone, enjoy Retro Gaming, or bring along your handheld console and hang out in true Japanese style.Prizes for the best dressed Cosplayer are supplied by none other than Harajuku! girl enthusiast, Gwen Stefani.

Escape to Japan!

 

Featuring Live Performances From:

A Winter’s Education
Toronto Sun
Machina Shogunate
Death to Indie

Guest DJ Sets:

The Kut
DJ Danov Valravn
DJ Joseph Latham” – Anime Attacks


75p Film: Ghost in the Shell

 

***THIS EVENT HAS NOW PASSED***

 

Film: Ghost in the Shell (攻殻機動隊)

When: Sunday the 4rd of  November, 8:15am

Where: Tyneside Cinema  (Directions)

Website: https://www.tynesidecinema.co.uk

Price: £0.75

 

As part of the Tyneside cinema’s ‘Cult Classic All Nighter II’ they will be showing the legendary Japanese Anime film Ghost in the Shell.

 

Made in 1995 and adapted from Masamune Shirow’s (士郎 正宗) manga of the same name, Ghost in the Shell attempt’s to be a more serious streamlined  story than it’s manga origin. The film is set in 2029 and humanity has become interconnected by a vast electronic information network, but it is also a battle ground on which Tokyo’s section 9  cyborg police officers fight crime. Major Motoko Kusanagi is on the trail of a criminal known as the puppet master who seemingly has the ability to hack into humans minds. Kusanagi and the puppet master are on a collision course, but what connection do the two have, and what answers will be revealed when they meet?

 

Ghost in the Shell is one of the most critically lauded anime films ever produced and one of the few to enter non-Japanese pop culture. You can’t miss this opportunity to see it in the cinema.