The Anemone Within
Things I read off the screen during Kiyoshi (SEANCE) Kurosawa’s BRIGHT FUTURE (a floaty-strange tale of murder, social/familial disaffection and freshwater jellyfish which Fiona and I watched tonight).
TOILET LADIES. Illuminated sign in the very first shot. Great beginning!
Of course, this being a Japanese film, there’s a lot of kanji-signage which I can’t read. Reminds me of how Boorman’s HELL IN THE PACIFIC provides no subtitles for Toshiro Mifune’s character, whereas when shown in Japan, they left Lee Marvin untranslated. Two for one!
EXCELA SO. Brand name of BIG washing machine (Might be EXCELA 50, hard to tell).
GOAL. The name of a fun-looking arcade game where the “heroes” fire pistols at a bouncy surface will balls on, trying to bounce the balls into holes. Later, another character will lecture them on the importance of goals. Little does he know, they have a Secret And Wonderful Goal already.
XAO. PENNYBLACK. ASBEE. Shop signs on a busy street. Most of the English-language signs in this movie are equally abstract and meaningless.
man (lower-case). Seems to be a jar or carton of foodstuff in a kitchen. ‘Sorry, we’re all out of “man.”‘ ‘Run out and get us some more “man”, would you?’
Just realised, it’s a partially hidden jar of mangos. I am an idiot.
DIZ ‘N’ BIRD. Cover of a long-playing record. Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie album, in keeping with the nonsense/baby-talk quality of most of this film’s onscreen text. Is this a deliberate strategy or a reflection of the use of English in Japanese print?
Victor JVC. Big sign on a building, in a desatured cityscape that looks like pure b&w until a medium-shot introduces a pasty flesh-tone.
NOISE. A poster of some kind in a lawyer’s office. Why? Never mind, we are here because one of our protags is in prison for MURDER:
ZIMA. Sign at a bar, seemingly a product. I’d never heard of this, but upon googling I find it is “the new malternative.”
FUNC. A partially obscured bar title. Could this joint actually be called FUNCTION? Or maybe it’s just FUNC?
SANDWICHES CAFE AND RESTAURANT. More information about what FUNC has to offer.
STANLEY. On the protag’s T-shirt, written in an arch across his chest. Some smaller text below is illegible, looks like it might say “CONSTRUCTION”. STANLEY CONSTRUCTION? What kind of T-shirt logo is THAT?
SUCK. Glimpsed on a wall in his room, but it was real quick, I could be mistaken.
GREEN HOUSE. Ironic big logo on an ugly concrete building.
The main guy discovers that he’s succesfully created a fresh-water jellyfish (his GOAL) and it’s living in a mysterious pool under his floor.
And at this exact point, one hour into the movie, the English text abruptly sto