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Article

Boy

Posted on

Boy

type:
Book
Current Status:
In Season
author:
Takeshi Kitano
publisher:
Vertical
genre:
Fiction, Short Stories

We gave it a B

Pleasant and ethnographically informative as they are, the three scenes from childhood gathered in this slim volume benefit from background knowledge — and may suffer without it. They’re the work of the prolific Japanese polymath and pop phenomenon — actor, filmmaker, comedian, essayist, novelist, TV star, painter — who calls himself ”Beat” Takeshi. (David James Karashima translates with an ear for the author’s deadpan drollery.) For years, Takeshi Kitano’s films have zigzagged between stark yakuza-centric violence (Sonatine) and amusing kid-centric cuteness (Kikujiro). Boy‘s three ostensibly lighthearted tales, so personal in tone and intimate in details about drinking fathers, frightened brothers, and bullying classmates, put Kitano’s identification with children in a clarifying light. B