The Vancouver Asahi, 100 Yen Love, My Wife’s Illness Dementia with Lewy Bodies, Death Forest Kyoufu no Mori, Youkai Watch the Movie: It’s the Secret of Birth, Meow!, Chibi neko Tomu no daiboken Chikyuu o Sukue! Na kamatachi Japanese Film Trailers

Hello, dear audience! I hope you are well! This is the last trailer post before Christmas so….


My Little Sweet Pea Film Image

Right, back to business. Film business. Sunday last week I went to see Blade Runner. Since I already know the story and twists, it was more of a fascinating watch as I looked at the technical elements, the aesthetics, performances, and the script. I must admit that I still had shivers during the big speeches:

“…All those memories lost… like tears in the rain…”

I also watched the films Dagon (2001), Tokyo Park (2010) again, and Kotsutsubo (2012). In terms of anime, Gugure!! Kokkuri-san has rocketed up the anime charts with its latest episode and I’m really enjoying Garo a lot as well. I’m glad that Psycho-Pass 2 has finished and while writing Christmas cards I was watching A.D. Police. And that’s about it for stuff that I have viewed. As for what I will view in the future… I posted about the Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme for 2015 and I have a good idea about what I want to watch and what I’m willing to skip.

What’s released in Tokyo this weekend?

Fewer films but what they are is pretty special, especially 100 Yen Love! I hope someone brings that to the UK!


The Vancouver Asahi      

The Vancouver Asahi Film Poster
The Vancouver Asahi Film Poster

Japanese: バンクーバーの朝

Romaji: Vancouver no Asahi

Running Time: 132 mins.

Release Date: December 20th, 2014

Director: Yuya Ishii

Writer: Satoko Okudera (Screenplay),

Starring: Satoshi Tsumabuki, Kazuya Kamenashi, Mitsuki Takahata, Aoi Miyazaki, Ryo Katsuji, Yusuke Kamiji, Sosuke Ikematsu, Shihori Kanjiya, Eri Ishida, Koichi Sato,

This was at the Vancouver International Film Festival and it is the latest from director, Yuya Ishii. I have reviewed his films Sawako DecidesMitsuko Delivers, and The Great Passage and found all but one to be wonderful, full of dry comedy based on observational humour. This looks like a mix of that with more serious drama based on the immigrant experience. The screenplay is by Satoko Okudera, scribe for the wonderful The Wolf Children. I bet another reason Vancouver got the film because it’s set in the city! The lead actor is Satoshi Tsumabuki, a great talent who can completely change his
performances with the roles he is given as seen in For Love’s SakeVillainJudge! and The World of Kanako.

Princess Takamado and Satoshi Tsumabuki

He was recently at a screening of the film with Princess Takamado. She is head of the Canada-Japan association and a highly intelligent and widely travelled woman!

Vancouver in the 1930’s had a Japantown, a place near the docks where sailors and immigrants lived. The children of these immigrants form a baseball team named Asahi. They endure problems in their everyday lives like racism and prejudice and things get worse when Japan goes to war with the US, however, through baseball and thanks to their determined and intelligent captain Reggie Kasahara (Tsumabuki) the community unites together to show the world just what they are made of. Get ready for some thrilling baseball matches.



100 Yen Love   

100 Yen Love Film Poster
100 Yen Love Film Poster

Japanese: 百円の恋

Romaji: Hyaku-en no Koi

Running Time: 113 mins.

Release Date: December 20th, 2014

Director: Masaharu Take

Writer: Masaharu Take (Screenplay),

Starring: Sakura Ando, Hirofumi Arai, Miyoko Inagawa, Saori, Shohei Uno Tadashi Sakata, Yuki Okita,

Sakura Ando (Love Exposure) and Hirofui Arai (The Ravine of Goodbye) star in a film which is getting all sorts of praise, especially for Ando’s performance. The review over at Variety makes me hope that this will show up at the London Film Festival or Raindance or maybe even Terracotta so I can see if it lives up to the hype. It’s about boxing and the last boxing film I reviewed was Shinya Tsukamoto’s 1995 title, Tokyo Fist. Will this be as intense? Check out the trailer!

Ichiko (Ando) is a hikikomori who lives at her parents’ home but that situation changes when her younger sister divorces and moves back with her child. Kazuko and her sister’s relationship is pretty rocky and the two fight which makes Kazuko move out and find a place of her own. While working at a 100 Yen shop she keeps encountering a middle-aged boxer (Arai) who practices at a local boxing gym. She is attracted to him and the two start a relationship which will fuel the continuing change in her life.

Also, fun fact, Creephyp composed and performed the film’s theme song, “Hyakuhachi-en no Koi” which can be heard in the trailer and they were a key part in Daigo Matsui’s film, How Selfish I Am! considering they inspired the film’s story, made the music and even appeared in it.



My Wife’s Illness Demential with Lewy Bodies   My Wife’s Illness Demential with Lewy Bodies Film Poster

Japanese: 妻の病 レビー小体型認知症

Romaji: Tsuma no yamai rebī ko taikei ninshishō

Running Time: 87 mins.

Release Date: December 20th, 2014

Director: Shinichi Ise

Writer: N/A

Starring: N/A

Doctor Koichi Ishimoto lives in Kochi Prefecture with his wife Yayoi who has dementia and schizophrenia. He spends every day with his wife and records their day-to-day activities not just as a doctor but as a loving husband with support from family and community. This documentary  explore the issues involved with dementia through this couple.



Death Forest Kyoufu no Mori   

Death Forest Film Poster
Death Forest Film Poster

Japanese: DEATH FOREST 恐怖の森

Romaji: Death Forest Kyoufu no Mori

Running Time: 65 mins.

Release Date: December 20th, 2014

Director: Kazumi Masataka

Writer: Kazumi Masataka (Screenplay), Kazz (Original Game Creator)

Starring: Momoko Midorikawa, Katsunori Tanaka, Koichi Kida, Kazunori Heike,

There was that movie adaptation of the  Blue Demon free downloadable game where people get chased by a big headed blue monster thing earlier in the year and we have another film that is based on a free downloadable game where people get chased by a big white headed thing. Japanese let’s players have tackled this in a number of videos. You can watch them for ten minutes or watch the short and succinct trailer which actually looks pretty decent. Your choice.

Yoshie and her friends just wanted to go on a camping trip in a region far away from Tokyo but when their car breaks down while they take a short cut through a spooky forest they get chased by some monsters. There’s a lesson here for everyone: don’t take short cuts through spooky forests because people who do almost always get lost and/or attacked by monsters/people. If you want to go somewhere just take a train. It’s hard to get lost on one of those things.



Yōkai Watch the Movie: It’s the Secret of Birth, Meow!  

Yōkai Watch the Movie It's the Secret of Birth, Meow! Film Poster
Yōkai Watch the Movie It’s the Secret of Birth, Meow! Film Poster

Japanese: 映画 妖怪ウォッチ 誕生の秘密だニャン!

Romaji: Yōkai Watch: Tanjō no Himitsu da Nyan!

Running Time: 97 mins.

Release Date: December 20th, 2014

Director: Shinji Ushiro,

Writer: Yoichi Kato (Screenplay), LEVEL-5 (Original Game Creator)

Starring: Haruka Tomatsu (Keita Amano), Tomokazu Seki (Whisper), Etsuko Kozakura (Jibanyan), Yuuki Kaji (Fuyunyan), Chie Satou (Kanchi Imada),

Here’s another film based on a video game. Youkai Watch is a game created by LEVEL-5 (Professor Layton, Steambot Chronicles, Inazuma Eleven) and a big deal in Japan. It’s aimed at kids and available on 3DS and it has spawned a massive franchise almost approaching Pokemon level with anime like this movie which has broken records for the number of tickets pre-booked. It has yet to penetrate the West in the same way but it’s only a matter of time, surely? Anyway, the story is all about Keita (Tomatsu) catching ghosts by using the watch. The adventure starts when the watch disappears while he is asleep in his grandmother’s house. He sets out on an adventure to get it back and discovers new allies.



Chibi neko Tomu no daiboken Chikyuu o Sukue! Na kamatachi   

Chibi Neko Tom no Dai Bōken Film Poster
Chibi Neko Tom no Dai Bōken Film Poster

Japanese: ちびねこトムの大冒険 地球を救え!なかまたち

Romaji: Chibi neko Tomu no daiboken Chikyuu o Sukue! Na kamatachi

Running Time: 81 mins.

Release Date: December 20th, 2014

Director: Ryutaro Nakamura

Writer: Ryutaro Nakamura (Screenplay),

Starring: Toshiko Fujita (Tom), Masako Nozawa (Mark), Minami Takayama (Alex),

July 26th, 2013 was the date that Ryutaro Nakamura, the director of Kino’s Journey and Serial Experiement Lain, passed away. One of his first feature-length films was Tom’s Big Adventure, a 1992 production that gathered together a talented cast and staff (like the composer Kenji Kawai) to bring to life the adventure of a cat named Tom and his companions who go on a big adventure to save the world. A cinema in Tokyo is screening the film. I have not seen this film but it looks like a good old-fashioned children’s adventure. I have seen other works of Nakamura’s. Kino’s Journey and Serial Experiments Lain are two anime that I hold in high regard and think should be seen by a wider audience so if you have the time, please watch them.


Here’s the ED for Kino’s Journey which is the not so random video of the weekend. Thanks for reading:

10 thoughts on “The Vancouver Asahi, 100 Yen Love, My Wife’s Illness Dementia with Lewy Bodies, Death Forest Kyoufu no Mori, Youkai Watch the Movie: It’s the Secret of Birth, Meow!, Chibi neko Tomu no daiboken Chikyuu o Sukue! Na kamatachi Japanese Film Trailers

  1. Happy Holidays!

    I’ve heard a lot of raves about 100 Yen, especially Sakura Ando – anyway she is always a terrific actress in all the movies I’ve seen whether she takes on a lead or supporting role,

    Vancouver Asahi had mixed reviews, but I would be very interested in watch it now! lol

    1. 100 Yen Love is the biggest draw for me and the reviews pointing out Ando’s performance further establish that she is one of the most capable actors in Japan currently going. I cannot think of a bad performance from her.

      Vancouver Asahi… I’m interested but not that interested…

  2. If I wrote movie blurbs this would describe one of my favorite all-time anime series. Amazing opening and ending themes.

    Kino’s Journey: The story of Kino and Kino’s talking motorcycle and not making any judgments. Despite its Buddhist overtones, every once in a while Kino has to solve things with a gun.

    1. NOOOOO! DON’T REVEAL KINOS BACKGROUND! I just edited your comment! It’s a surprise and it adds a fascinating texture to the series with regards to the way people react to Kino!

      Also, the fact you like Kino’s Journey makes you even cooler!

  3. The first two are certainly must-see for me. Vancouver Asahi sounds interesting, and Ando Sakura’s film… well, I’d want to see just about anything with her in it, since she’s terrific as jedmed says indeed. Pity that she seems a bit underrated at times – well, the indie directors are all well aware of here talent at least. I guess for the mainstream directors/producers she isn’t cookie cutter bland enough (you know, like Ms. Takei.).


    No … needed here by the way. The quotation mark already tells us you're cutting something out. You only need to tell us if it's in the middle of a quote (Sorry. Am in editing mode here.).

    1. Be honest, you want to watch Death Forest Kyoufu no Mori. Movie of the weekend! I’ll take you to see it if you want 😉

      On a serious note, Sakura Ando’s new film sounds really good and I totally agree with your sentiments about seeing her performances. She steals films from other actors. Love Exposure, anyone?

  4. BR: That is a beautiful quote by the dying Roy Batty. I sometimes use it to describe hurricanes.

    The thing that bothers me about the great, but very flawed film, not counting all the different versions is that the movie is set in 2019! Even the damn creative types should have known enough science in 1981 that it was not possible. Not sure when PK Dick set the story, but that is one of my PET PEEVES about Sci-Fi : the ridiculously futuristic NEAR FUTURE!

    1. When I heard that quote I had shivers running up and down my spine. I repeated it in work when talking about the film 🙂

      I did have a chuckle at the 2019 bit. Looking at the advance in technology at the time – the leaps in terms of computers – it might not have been far-fetched to imagine it. The 80s were filled with all sorts of movie robots that were far more advanced than what we see now.

  5. RE: Yōkai Watch. Is the reason that the fannchise has not penetrated the west is because the game is not available? … unless you have a Japanese 3DS and send for it from Japan.

    I’ve been wanting to see what all the interest is about.

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