Collection of Kinema club covers

About Kinema Club

Kinema Club is a long-standing, international but informal group devoted to the study of Japanese moving image media. Kinema Club was started precisely to share knowledge about Japanese cinema, so this site serves both to introduce our activities, such as the KineJapan mailing list and our conferences and workshops, as well promote information and thinking about films, research, bibliography, and education.

How we started

A small informal group of scholars sharing information

Kinema Club is a website devoted to the study of Japanese moving image media. We started as a small, informal group of scholars sharing xeroxed copies of tables of contents for film magazines, and since starting the KineJapan list have grown to over 800 members from all over the world. Our name comes from famous Taisho era movie theaters in Tokyo and Kobe (note the image of Sessue Hayakawa gracing the cover of the Tokyo Kinema Kurabu pamphlet). 

Kinema Kurabu Sessue cover

Our History

From Copy Machine to Computers: Collaboration and Kinema Club

One of the most difficult problems for scholars of Japanese film is the dearth of written materials outside of Japan. Because of the high/low art distinctions that undergirded literature departments until recent times, even our largest East Asian libraries have surprisingly poor collections of film books and periodicals.

Learn more about our history
Japanese film star from the 1930s

Editorial Collective

Kinema Club is an anarchistic organization without a president or board of directors. But to help maintain this site, both technically and in terms of quality, a number of members have volunteered to help compose, referee and edit site content.