About

“Flash Gordon meets Cowboy Bebop at Shaolin Temple.” That about sums up three of my essential obsessions: classic film/pop culture, Japanese animation, and Hong Kong kung fu movies. This blog will devote attention to those as well as other film/TV-based interests. The emphasis here will be on things that don’t get much coverage elsewhere. I like to discover obscure films that have points of historical interest. For instance, I recently watched, for the first time, the Hopalong Cassidy western, “Border Patrol” (1943), which offered the auspicious film debut of Robert Mitchum, my all-time favorite movie star. That, to me, counts as something special and I will be devoting an entry to it. I also watch a lot of little-known Japanese animated and live-action movies and TV shows from past decades and find frequent examples of beauty and imagination that deserve to be highlighted. I also have a collection of several hundred DVDs from Hong Kong’s Shaw Bros. studio, from the years 1958-1985. While I’ve watched most of the kung fu titles and have reviewed over a hundred of them for IMDB, I’m eager to tackle the non-action films in this library as well, including musicals, comedies, historical epics, literary adaptations, and contemporary melodramas. I’ve always been fascinated by the whole subject of genre moviemaking and how it’s formed the basis of film industries in Hollywood, Japan, and Hong Kong over many decades.

I’m a New York-based film historian and critic who has been writing freelance articles about film for over three decades and articles and reviews devoted to Japanese animation for nearly two decades, both for print and web publication. I am the co-author of the book, “Anime Classics Zettai: 100 Must-See Japanese Animation Masterpieces” (Stone Bridge, 2007), and have taught courses on anime at the School of Visual Arts and the City College of New York. I have written hundreds of reviews for Amazon.com and IMDB, all under my real name. I also have a Live Journal blog devoted to Japanese pop music, an interest that blossomed six-and-a-half years ago when, on a whim, I picked up a Hello! Project concert tape at a Japanese video store and fell in love with all of the acts featured on it. In my day job, which pays the bills, I work as a TV programmer for an educational cable station run by a large public institution.

I’ve always wanted to do blogs devoted to anime and film and decided to go with WordPress after attending a seminar in Manhattan and watching as my daughter (who attended the seminar with me) launched her blog, “Parenthetical Observations,” last fall. I decided to combine the two interests into one blog because I tend to approach anime from my background as a film and animation critic, focusing attention on the aesthetic aspects—production design, art direction, sound, music, color, composition, characterizations, etc.—rather than just the storylines. I’ve always wanted film students and scholars to appreciate the cinematic aspects of anime and take the best examples of the art form as seriously as they do the best classic films. It’s something I’ve always stressed in my writing on anime and plan to continue that here.

I’m not sure how best to publicize this blog, but for now I just want to make updating it a regular habit. It’ll be pretty bare-bones at the start, since I’m not the most tech-savvy person out there, although I’ll try to pepper it with illustrations and links to other sites. But I hope you’ll enjoy reading it and learning from it. Which is all I ask.

8 Responses to “About”

  1. Jonathan Padilla - Digital Artist January 16, 2013 at 10:02 AM #

    Hi there Mr. Camp! It’s Jonathan, 3d digital artist from the Bronx. You might remember me from about 2 years back when you requested my consultation on upgrading your computer hardware. You autographed a copy of your book Zettai! for me. Awesome blog and great film reviews! Keep it up!

  2. Kristine Cabanban June 10, 2014 at 3:54 PM #

    Fun blog and so much information! Thanks for the education and film recommendations 😀

  3. Henry Chamberlain July 7, 2016 at 2:42 AM #

    What a treat to discover your blog! This is just the sort of stuff that I love too. Our blogs overlap quite a bit.

  4. Sean Doyle September 17, 2016 at 1:38 PM #

    Brian:

    I would strongly encourage you to review Shout Factory’s July 12th release of The Defenders: Season One on DVD. I have long been an advocate for a home media release of this groundbreaking and Emmy Award-winning legal drama starring E.G. Marshall and Robert Reed that ran on CBS for 4 seasons from 1961-1965. This was such a historically important television series and I so grateful that not only fans of when it was originally broadcast but new generations of viewers will finally have access to this thought-provoking and socially relevant television series.

    Here are some informative articles about The Defenders and the DVD release of Season One:

    http://www.wsj.com/articles/the-defenders-was-a-golden-exception-to-tvs-vast-wasteland-1473285041

    http://www.artsjournal.com/aboutlastnight/

    http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/tv/la-et-st-defenders-come-to-dvd-20160826-snap-story.html

    http://www.newsday.com/entertainment/tv/why-quality-tv-comes-from-new-york-not-hollywood-1.12058054

    https://classictvhistory.wordpress.com/2016/07/14/defending-the-defenders/

    http://comforttv.blogspot.com/2016/08/better-late-than-never-defenders-on-dvd.html

    http://www.newsfromme.com/2016/09/05/order-in-the-court/

    http://www.newsfromme.com/2010/11/25/teevee-on-deeveedee/

    http://www.avclub.com/article/ithe-defendersi-was-ithei-great-drama-of-the-60s-b-83042

    http://blog.unl.edu/dixon/2016/07/28/classic-tv-series-the-defenders-comes-to-dvd-at-last/

    http://eddieonfilm.blogspot.com/2010/09/committed-to-controversy.html?m=1

    http://articles.latimes.com/1997/sep/01/entertainment/ca-27817

    http://www.museum.tv/eotv/defendersth.htm

    Thank you in advance for your consideration.

  5. jorge luis perez rivera April 21, 2017 at 3:08 PM #

    Is there any wayI can be notified when you uipdate your blog?

    • briandanacamp April 21, 2017 at 4:45 PM #

      Yes. Click on “Follow” and you’ll get an email update whenever I do a new blog entry.

  6. jorge luis perez rivera April 21, 2017 at 5:17 PM #

    Where is the ‘follow’ option?

    • briandanacamp April 21, 2017 at 5:46 PM #

      There’s usually a little box or tab on the right side of the blog that says “Follow” and you just click on it. I can’t say any more than that because my own blog page doesn’t show it because it doesn’t need to, but when I look at other WordPress blogs that I don’t follow I see that tab pretty prominently.

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