Peach Festival Presents Tears, The Morning of the Funeral, Tokyo Halloween Night, Anemia, Angel Home, It’s Me It’s Me, Intimacy, The Centenarian Clock, Shemale is the Second Generation, June 06th, Tai shibou kei Tanita no Shain Shokudou, +1 Plus One Vol.4, Heart Beat,

Saturday Touhou Face TiltOnly one post this week and that was for the Terracotta Far East Film Festival which I will be attending in just under two week’s time! I have watched plenty of anime including Attack on Titan (tears of bloody joy over Mikasa’s emotional journey!!!), Red Data Girl (I will get that First Impression done!!!) and Aku no Hana (episode 7 just broke my mind with its awesomeness!!!) and with my exams over I will get back to watching and reviewing films!!! Tonight I re-watch 2LDK and Aragami again. Right, now I’m going to head off to Japan Day at Cardiff Library!

What is released this week? I say this week because there is a film festival going on in Japan at the moment and they released some titles on the 20th. There are lots of cool trailers.

Peach Festival FilmsPeach Film Festival Poster

Female filmmakers have been on the rise in Japan as well regarded films like Dreams for Sale, End of Puberty and Just Pretended to Hear reveal. To get a better taste of what other young female directors are doing we get a whole festival dedicated to showing the freshest works coming from them. The theme for this year is ‘Tears’. Here are three short films that will be on the big screen for the Peach Film Festival (Momomatsuri).


Peach Festival Presents Tears “The Morning of the Funeral”

Japanese Title: 桃まつり presents なみだ “徳井唯藤子”

Romaji: Momo Matsuri Presents Namida “Tokui Yui Fujiko”Morning of the Funeral

Release Date: May 20th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 30 mins.

Director: Mariya Nukazuka

Writer: Mariya Nukazuka (Screenplay)

Starring: Marui Mitoko, Fuyuna Asakura, Kyoichi Arakawa

Mariya Nukazuka learned how to make films at the Tokyo National Universit of Fine Arts Graduate School of film. In her short film a woman named Hatsumi (Mitoko) who is back in her hometown to attend the funeral of her grandfather.


Peach Festival Presents Tears “Tokyo Halloween Night”

Japanese Title: 桃まつり presents なみだ “東京ハロウインナイト”Tokyo Halloween Night Film Image

Romaji: Momo Matsuri Presents Namida “Toukyou Harou-in Naito”

Release Date: May 20th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 25 mins.

Director: Mari Okada

Writer: Mari Okada (Screenplay)

Starring: Yuki Kimura, Takeru Shibaki, Chiaki Tatsumi, Yoichi Kohiyama

Mari Okada studied at the California Institute of the Arts and has had her work screened at the Yubari International Fantastic Film Festival. Furthermore, she has contributed to the 3.11 film Tomorrow. In this film a female scarecrow (Kimura) who stands in a rice field all day long has one wish, to be human for the night of Halloween.  Her wish comes true and so she finds herself on the streets of Tokyo surrounded by people. She meets a zombie (Shibaki) and follows him to a party where the two fall in love.


Peach Festival Presents Tears “Anemia”         Anemia Film Image

Japanese Title: 桃まつり presents なみだ “貧血”

Romaji: Momo Matsuri Presents Namida “Anemia”

Release Date: May 20th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 25 mins.

Director: Maya Kato

Writer: Maya Kato (Screenplay)

Starring: Reina Haruyama, Yuri Yamada, Chisato Ushio, Ryo Hasebe, Shinnosuke Ibaraki

Maya Kato has appeared at a previous Peach Film Festival with the short film Falling. She reunites with two cast members from that film, Reina Haruyama and Yuri Yamada in a tale about a vampire named Abeko (Haruyama) and a wheel-chair bound virginal woman named Izumi who spend the night with two other people who don’t know that the two may have ulterior motives… like sex and blood! I like the look of the trailer. Very surreal.

Heart Beat                                             Heart Beat Film Poster

Japanese Title: Heart Beat

Release Date: May 25th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 102 mins.

Director: Naoya Asanuma

Writer: Naoya Asanuma (Screenplay)

Starring: Anna Ishibashi, Hideyuki Iijima, Yuki Kitagawa, Mayumi Uchida, Yu Yoshioka, Hajime Inoue, Keita Saito, Yoko Ishino

Naoya Asanuma’s film Heart Beat played at last year’s Yubari International Fantastic Film Festival. It has an interesting cast made up of actors and actresses who have starred in cool indie films and major titles like Anna Ishibashi (My Back Page, MILOCRORZE – A Love Story), Yuki Kitagawa (Goth – Love of Death, Yo-Yo Girl Cop), and Yurei Yanagi (Kaidan, Ringu, The Complex, Cold Bloom).

Koji, Yuta and Kayo have been friends since childhood. The three play on the school basketball team but they keep on losing which makes their dream of playing in the national championships unlikely. Then Kayo quits without telling anyone why. The reason is because Kayo’s alcoholic mother is back home after drying out at a hospital and while she feels that she must look after her mother she want to re-join the team.


Angel Home                           Angel Home Film Poster

Japanese Title: くちづけ

Romaji: Momo Matsuri Presents Namida “Anemia”

Release Date: May 25th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 123 mins.

Director: Yukihiko Tsutsumi

Writer: Takayuki Takuma (Screenplay)

Starring: Shihori Kanjiya, Naoto Takenaka, Takayuki Takuma, Tomoko Tabata, Ai Hashimoto, Yumi Asou, Mitsuru Hirata, Seiji Miyane, Rei Okamoto

Actor, writer, director Takayuki Takuma (For Love’s Sake) has joined forces with the extraordinarily cool director Yukihiko Tsutsumi (2LDK) is cool (great films, great raconteur). He has worked on big-budget films like SPEC: Heaven and low-budget passion projects like My House. This is a romantic/family story set in a group home for mentally underdeveloped adults … Could be tricky stuff but the trailer is pretty safe and even amusing and sentimental and it has some pedigree since it is based on a successful stage play that Takuma wrote. Mark Schilling’s review makes it sound decent.

The actors involved include Shihori Kanjiya (Survive Style 5+, Dead Waves), Naoto Takenaka (Ninja Kids!!!, Beck), the aforementioned Takayuki Takuma, Tomoko Tabata (The Hidden Blade), and Ai Hashimoto (Another, The Kirishima Thing).

The Sunflower House is a group home for mentally underdeveloped adults. When manga artist Itpon Aijo (Takenaka) and his mentally challenged daughter Mako (Kanjiya) take over the running of the house they encounter the residents including the lively Uyan (Takuma). When Mako and Uyan begin to fall in love it causes Itpon trouble.


It’s Me, It’s Me                   Ore Ore Film Poster

Japanese Title: 俺俺

Romaji: Ore Ore

Release Date: May 25th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 123 mins.

Director: Satoshi Miki

Writer: Satoshi Miki (Screenplay), Tomoyuki Hoshino (Novel)

Starring: Kazuya Kamenashi, Yuki Uchida, Ryo Kase, Midoriko Kimura, Keiko Takahashi, Eri Fuse, Yutaka Matsushige, Ryo Iwamatsu, Yoshiyuki Morishita, Aimi Satsukawa,

Since 2005 Satoshi Miki has rapidly gained a rep for writing and directing great comedies. His reputation is such that Third Window Films has released a box set with three of his titles, Instant SwampTurtles Are Surprisingly Fast Swimmers and Adrift in Tokyo. I have only reviewed the latter but I liked it a lot. This is Miki’s latest film and it had its world premiere at the Udine Far East Film Festival and Mark Schilling has given it an excellent review stating,

Miki, who also wrote the script, maintains the same fine, tight control over his mind-bending material as he did in “Adrift in Tokyo.” And as in the previous film, he weaves deeper themes, as well as a wealth of dryly funny sight gags, into his slight story, but with more abandon and ambition…”

The film stars Kat-Tun member Kazuya Kamenashi (Humanoid Monster Bem), Ryo Kase (Bright FutureOutrageSPEC), Eri Fuse (Boiling Point) Yutaka Matsushige (The Guard From Underground) and Yuki Uchida (Glory to the Filmmaker!). Unfortunately I couldn’t find a decent trailer (lots of Kat-Tun videos instead). I’ll try and get one later.

Hitoshi Nagano (Kamenashi) is a failed photographer working a dead end job at an electrical store when he finds the mobile phone of an obnoxious customer who has left it behind. He phones the customer’s mother and pretends to be her son so she will transfer money into his bank account. He might have expected to have never met his victim but she turns up in his life alongside doppelgangers who, despite being different in terms of character, get along really well with him. Hitoshi takes advantage of this.


Intimacy                                  Intimacy Film Poster

Japanese Title: 親密さ

Romaji: Shinmitsusa

Release Date: May 25th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 255 mins.

Director: Ryūsuke Hamaguchi

Writer: Ryūsuke Hamaguchi (Screenplay)

Starring: Rin Hirano, Ryo Sato, Ayako Ito, Mikio Tayama, Toru Arai

The film is by Ryūsuke Hamaguchi who has directed The Depths (2011) and Passion(2008). Ryo Sato has starred in the short Sunrise Sunset, part of the Cinema Impact movement, released back in JanuaryIntimacy was shown at a retrospective for Hamaguchi last year but this film seems to be slightly different since it follows the rehearsals of the actors, the planning and recording of the film and then the film itself.


Taishibou kei Tanita no Shain ShokudouTaishibokei Tanita no Shain Shokudo Film Poster

Japanese Title: 体 脂肪計 タニタ の 社員 食堂

Romaji: Tai shibou kei Tanita no Shain Shokudou

Release Date: May 25th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 100 mins.

Director: Toshio Lee

Writer: Daisuke Tanaka(Screenplay)

Starring: Yuka, Kenta Hamano, Masao Kusakari, Kinako Kobayashi, Yo Yoshida, Mitsu Dan, Kumiko Watari

Toshio Lee is a good comedy director. His live-action adaptation of Detroit Metal City was genuinely funny. He is back with another comedy but this time instead of death metal bands he takes on the real life tale of Tanita Corporation, the company which developed the world’s first body fat measuring device but finds it hard to sell the device because of its overweight employees. In the film, company president Konosuke (Hamano) hire a nutritionist named Nanako (Yuka) to get the overweight employees onto a diet of special food served at the company restaurant.


The film stars Yuka, who appeared in Takashi Shimizu’s horror flick Reincarnation (awesome J-hora!!!) and A Letter to Momo, Kinako Kobayashi (It’s Me It’s Me) and Mitsu Dan (Be My Slave). A film about fat people losing weight… It looks potentially amusing with Nanako enforcing a strict regime and people breaking under the pressure but it’s not enough to draw me in. What about you?


June 06th                                           June 06th Future Assassin

Japanese Title: 6 月 6日

Romaji: 6 Gatsu 6 Nichi

Release Date: May 25th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 110 mins.

Directors: Hiroshi Kashiwabara, Hajime Ishida, Yoshikazu Ishii, Hara Takahito, Atsushi Muroga

Writer: Maya Kato (Screenplay)

Starring: Yuki Tanaka, Ayako Fujita, Toda Yuta, Kosuke Nagai, Yoshikazu Tanimua, Kaoru Kojima, Daiki Namikawa, Aiko Kato, Shun Tanaka

Here we have an omnibus film made up of 6 episodes which run for around 20 minutes each. The stories take place in a different number of setting starting in Edo Period Japan at around 1848 and ending way in the future in the year 2495. The theme linking the stories together is reincarnation. I’m unfamiliar with nearly all of the names attached but during a look at the work of Hajime Ishide I found his 2012 film Karakuri which looks good. Ignore the crappy CGI and focus on the possibilities and it could be entertaining. I mean, that submarine fired torpedoes at two people in a bloody dinghy! How awesome is that!


Shemale is the Second Generation        Shemale the Second Generation FIlm Poster

Japanese Title: 二代目はニューハーフ


Release Date: May 20th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 25 mins.

Director: OZAWA

Writer: OZAWA (Screenplay)

Starring: Hitoshi Ozawa, Bell, Yoshiyuki Yamaguchi, Yu Miyamura

Hiroshi Ozawa made an unforgettable appearance in Takeshi Kitano’s surreal gangster film Boiling Point and he has created a bit of an oeuvre playing tough guys in films like Score and Dead or Alive. He’s back in a film with an outrageous title that involves the disappeared son of a dead gangster reappearing in the criminal underworld in his new guise as a transsexual (Bell). The trailer doesn’t quite live up to my expectations because I was expecting something funny and not as serious as this. That written, it looks set to fall into competent low-budget action flick territory.


The Centenarian Clock            The Centenarian Clock Film Poster

Japanese Title: 百年の時計

Romaji: Hyaku Nen no Tokei

Release Date: May 25th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 205 mins.

Director: Maya Kato

Writer: Minato Takehiko (Screenplay)

Starring: Haruka Kinami, Mickey Curtis, Yuri Nakamura, Akiko Kiuchi, Hiroki Suzuki, Jun Inoue, Kai Shishido

Shusuke Kaneko is a director with a lot of films to his name. Most prominently for me are his Death Note adaptations and Azumi 2. He has two films getting a release this month. July sees the release of Ikenie no Jirenma (Dilemma of Sacrifice) where high school students on their graduation day are forced to find a sacrifice from among the student body or die. Before that we get this film which commemorates the centenary of the opening of a railway route in Kagawa Prefecture which is now known as the Takamatsu Kotohira electric railway. It is apparently famous in Japan. Anyway the film stars Haruka Kinami (The Samurai That Night), Mickey Curtis (Goodbye Debussy) an Yuri Nakamura (Fly with the GoldThe Grudge: Girl in Black).

Ryōka Kandaka (Kinami) is a curator for an art museum in Takamatsu City and she is organising a retrospective exhibition for an artist named Andō Yukito (Curtis). He is getting on in years and has lost his creative touch and so the prospect of a retrospective is not that attractive for him but an old pocket watch holding all sorts of memories of a girl he once knew could change his perspective.


+1 Plus One Vol.4                                      +1 Volume 4 Film Poster

Japanese Title: +1 プラスワン Vol. 4

Romaji: +1 Purasu Wan Vol. 4

Release Date: May 20th, 2013 (Japan)

Running Time: 95 mins.

Director: Akira Ogata, Ryosuke Hashiguchi, Hiro Ando

Writer: N/A

Starring: Aya Saito, Kumiko Masuda, Atsushi Shinohara, Koji Yamashita, Koichi Ito, Noriko Iwasaki, Misa Namba, Satoko Okamoto, Kanae Uotani, Hitomi Ito, Gen Sato, Ken Nagano, Takao Mitsudomi, Takuya Nara

Ah, another omnibus film with three veteran directors from the low to mid-budget tier of Japanese films. Stories range from a squabbling couple and their journey to a camp on a mountain, two online lovers who meet for the first time offline.