The following text is an excerpt from an essay commissioned by the specialist publishing house Hatori Press (Japan) for a tribute to the great critic, scholar and teacher Shigehiko Hasumi on the occasion of his 80th birthday (29 April 2016). Other contributors to this book (slated to appear in both Japanese and English editions) include Pedro Costa, Chris Fujiwara and Richard I. Suchenski. Beyond Prof. Hasumi’s many achievements in criticism and education (he was President of the University of Tokyo between 1997 and 2001), his ‘method,’ his unique way of seeing and speaking about films, has served as an immense inspiration for a generation of directors in Japan including Kiyoshi Kurosawa and Shinji Aoyama. The online magazines Rouge (www.rouge.com.au) and Lola (www.lolajournal.com), co-edited by Martin, provide the best access to Hasumi’s work in English (see references in the notes below).Leos Carax and Shigehiko Hasumi. Photo by Michiko Yoshitake.