They Shot Pictures Ep#20: Shinji Somai

On this episode of They Shot Pictures, Seema is joined by first-time guest Josh-Slater Williams and returning guests, Slayton Hurst Bourdon and Jhon to discuss the films of a truly under-seen and under-discussed Japanese filmmaker, Shinji Somai. Josh was the original inspiration for this episode having watched and loved a number of Somai films during a rare retrospective at the Edinburgh International Film Festival. Thanks to that one and a couple other retrospectives, a few of Somai's films have slowly become available and this is our modest attempt at bringing some much-needed attention to these unique films that we think set a precedent for various much more well-known filmmakers that were Somai's contemporaries and/or came after him. We focus in particular on the films, Sailor Suit and Machine Gun (1981), Typhoon Club (1985) and Moving (1993).

Josh Slater-Williams is the editor of the film section for He is also a regular contributor to the Scottish culture magazine, The Skinny and writes about films regularly on his blog, Read Write Hand. He also co-hosts the Seen Your Video podcast. You can pick Josh's brains on twitter @jslaterwilliams.

Slayton Hurst Bourdon is currently working on his debut short, I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart which will hopefully be available to watch soon at festivals worldwide and other media. To follow the project and find more information on the film, do visit the film's Facebook Page. Slayton can also be reached on twitter @beefilmnz.

Jhon writes about a variety of visual media including anime and manga on his blog. He also really would love for you to reach out to him about all things cinematic on twitter, @cruyffbedroom.

Jhon and Seema co-host another podcast called Cinema on the Road focused entirely on world cinema. You can follow the podcast on @cinemaontheroad.

Seema is also on twitter under the handle @wormatwork.