Happy Hour, Nagasaki: Memories of My Son, Wake Up, Girls! Beyond the Bottom, Orange, W: Futatsu no Kao wo Motsu Onnatachi, Neko bun no 4, Death Forest Kyoufu no Mori 3, Mori no Café, The Sunset Drive and other Japanese Film Trailers

Happy weekend!

Ruined Heart Tadanobu Asano Nathalia Acevedo

I had a productive week in terms of movie-watching with High Noon, Dracula, The Curse of Frankenstein, The Draughtsman’s Contract watched. I went and reviewed Ruined Heart (2014) as well.

I’ve got more overtime in work with the staff movie club – I won’t be able to watch the film but I will be earning money for next year when I have something special in store. I will be posting a review next week of a zombie films I have watched but there’s a trailer for I am a Hero which I want to post first. I will not be able to post as much as I once did because I want to practice Japanese and French.

What’s released this weekend?

Happy Hour    

Happy Hour Film Poster
Happy Hour Film Poster

ハッピーアワー「Happi- Awa- 

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 317 mins.

Director: Ryusuke Hamaguchi

Writer: Ryusuke Hamaguchi, Tadashi Nohara, Tomoyuki Takahashi (Screenplay)

Starring:  Rira Kawamura, Hazuki Kikuchi, Maiko Mihara, Sachie Tanaka, Shuhei Shibata, Ami Kugai, Sachiko Fukunaga, Reina Shiihashi,

Website IMDB

I saw Happy Hour at this year’s London film festival and gave it a review which was full of praise is a film unlikely to get licensed in the West. It’s a five hour seventeen minute running time dedicated to showing the lives of four middle-aged women and it has split my friends between those who are absorbed in the minutiae of everyday lives and those who find it goes on too long. It has won many awards on the film festival circuit but will it travel beyond cinephiles?

Fumi (Maiko Mihara), Akari (Sachie Tanaka), Sakurako (Hazuki Kikuchi), and Jun (Rira Kawamura), are four friends. These ladies are in their late 30s and are in relationships of varying sorts but not everybody is happy and so when Jun reveals that she is getting a divorce, well, this kicks off a train of dramatic events that make the women re-evaluate their lives.

 

Nagasaki: Memories of My Son   

Nagasaki Memories of My Son Film Poster
Nagasaki Memories of My Son Film Poster

母と暮らせば Haha to Kuraseba

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 130 mins.

Director: Yoji Yamada

Writer: Yoji Yamada, Emiko Hiramatsu (Screenplay),

Starring: Sayuri Yoshinaga, Kazunari Ninomiya, Haru Kuroki, Tadanobu Asano, Kenichi Kato, Miyu Honda,

Website    IMDB

Synopsis: Nobuko (Sayuri Yoshinaga) lives in post-war Nagasaki and works as a midwife. She survived the atomic bomb which killed her son Koji (Kazunari Ninomiya) three years earlier. Then, one night, Koji appears again and gives comfort to his mother and they reminiscence about pleasant times.

 

Wake Up, Girls! Beyond the Bottom   

Wake Up, Girls! Beyond the Bottom Film Poster
Wake Up, Girls! Beyond the Bottom Film Poster

Wake Up, Girls! Beyond the BottomWake Up, Girls! Beyond the Bottom

Release Date: December 11th, 2015

Running Time: 54 mins.

Director: Yutaka Yamamoto

Writer: Touko Machida (Series Composition),

Starring: Airi Eino (Airi Hayashida), Kaya Okuno (Kaya Kikuma), Mayu Yoshioka (Mayu Shimada), Minami Tanaka (Minami Katayama), Miyu Takagi (Miyu Okamoto), Nanami Yamashita (Nanami Hisami), Yoshino Aoyama (Yoshino Nanase), Reina Ueda (Rika Takashina)

Website     ANN   My Anime List

This is the second of a two-part movie adaptation of the TV anime Wake Up, Girls! which debuted in 2013.

Synopsis from Anime News Network: In the story of the original anime and previous film, Green Leaves Entertainment is a tiny production company on the verge of going out of business in Sendai, the biggest city in Japan’s northeastern Tohoku region. The agency once managed the careers of magicians, photo idols, fortune-tellers, and other entertainers, but its last remaining client finally quit. In danger of having zero talent (literally), the president Tange hatches an idea of producing an idol group. On the brash president’s orders, the dissatisfied manager Matsuda heads out to scout raw talent. Matsuda makes a fateful encounter with a certain girl…

The new films will follow the group as they make their debut in Tokyo.

 

Orange   

Orange Film Poster
Orange Film Poster

オレンジ Orenji

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 139 mins.

Director: Kojiro Hashimoto

Writer: Arisa Kaneko (Screenplay), Ichigo Takano (Original Manga),

Starring: Tao Tsuchiya, Kento Yamazaki, Ryo Ryusei, Hirona Yamazaki, Kurumi Shimizu, Erina Mano,

Website    IMDB

Synopsis: Naho Takamiya (Tao Tsuchiya) is a high school girl who gets something odd in the post… a letter sent by herself from 10 years in the future. The letter tells her about a guy she had a crush on, a student named Kakeru Naruse (Kento Yamazaki) who will die. Naho never forgot Kakeru and with the knowledge of his death she is determined to change the future. 

 

 

W: Futatsu no Kao wo Motsu Onnatachi   

W Futatsu no Kao wo Motsu Onnatachi Film Poster
W Futatsu no Kao wo Motsu Onnatachi Film Poster

W 二つの顔を持つ女たち W: Futatsu no Kao wo Motsu Onnatachi

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 89 mins.

Director: Shinichi Fujita

Writer: Masashi Shimizu (Screenplay), Shindo Fuyuki (Original Novel),

Starring: Kayano Masuyama, Shizuka Umemoto, Hanako Takigawa, Nodoka Sakura, Asuka Kishi, Yuri Morishita, Noboru Takachi, Noboru Kaneko,

Website    IMDB

Synopsis: The women at the bar “W Lounge” are known for having everyday jobs such as office ladies and teachers but at night they are part of a private detective agency dedicated to protecting all women.

Tsubomi’s (Kayano Masuyama) joins the club after her friend Airi (Keito Aoki) disappeared and left her with a debt of 3 million yen which Tsubomi co-guaranteed. The W Lounge manager Mona (Yuri Morishita) and the other women at W Lounge investigate the case and soon receive information that Airi is part of a secret club…

 

Kamen Rider X Kamen Rider Ghost & Drive: Super Movie War Genesis  

Kamen Rider X Kamen Rider Ghost & Drive Super Movie War Genesis Film Poster
Kamen Rider X Kamen Rider Ghost & Drive Super Movie War Genesis Film Poster

仮面ライダー×仮面ライダー ゴースト&ドライブ MOVIE大戦ジェネシス Kamen Raidaa × Kamen Raidaa Goosuto & Doraibu Choo Muubii Taisen Jeneshisu

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 89 mins.

Director: Osamu Kaneda

Writer: Makoto Hayashi (Screenplay), Shotaro Ishinomori (Original Creator),

Starring: Shun Nishime, Ryoma Takeuchi, Ryosuke Yamamoto, Rei Yoshii, Rio Uchida, Hikaru Osawa,

Website    IMDB

Scifijapan to the rescue again as they have a press release for this with cast info and a plot synopsis.

Synopsis: While in pursuit of a common enemy, Kamen Rider Ghost (Takeru Tenkuji) and Kamen Rider Drive (Shinnosuke Tomari) are caught in a sudden space-time distortion and thrown a decade into the past.

The time travel has unexpected consequences as Shinnosuke now meets Mr. Belt before their initial encounter, and Takeru finds his father, who is 10 years dead in the present day. The introduction of “foreign matter” into the past results in the revival of Roidmudes destroyed by Kamen Rider Drive in the present. Kamen Riders Specter, Mach and Chaser united against the Roidmudes only to discover that the evil androids are more powerful than before.

The disruption to history could have dire consequences for the human race. But Takeru is determined to prevent the murder of his father by magical forces, unaware that he and Shinnosuke are falling into a trap set by one of the greatest geniuses of all time — Leonardo da Vinci — who has been revived as an evil Ganma!

 

Neko bun no 4   

Neko bun no 4 Film Poster
Neko bun no 4 Film Poster

4/猫 ねこぶんのよん4/neko neko bun no yon

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 94 mins.

Director: Naoya Asanuma, Ryosuke Hayasaka, Yuya Nakaizumi, Shinichiro Ueda

Writer: Shinichiro Ueda (Screenplay),

Starring: Masaki Miura, Aki Asakura, Kanna, Tomoharu Hasegawa, Takashi Yamanaka, Haruka Kinami, Kyoka Shibata, Eriko Kumazawa,

Website    IMDB

Synopsis: Cats are the best pets! Fact. This movie is an omnibus film where four young directors tell stories about people and their cats including a mother-daughter pickpocket team, a hotel manager, and a school girl. It has lots of great character actors in it but it looks too sentimental.

 

Tennoji Old Elephant Haruko’s Last Summer   

Tennoji Old Elephant Haruko's Last Summer Film Poster
Tennoji Old Elephant Haruko’s Last Summer Film Poster

天王寺おばあちゃんゾウ 春子 最後の夏Tennoji o bachan zo Haruko saigo no natsu

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 99 mins.

Director: Hitomi Takeshi

Writer: N/A

Starring: N/A

Website

Synopsis: Haruko was an old elephant in Tennoji zoo that died in 2014 and a documentary was shot of its last summer. The elephant lived for over sixty years and was a much loved attraction and even while it was old it still made an appearance for the public.

 

Hikari no kuni no ohanashi   

Hikari no kuni no ohanashi Film Poster
Hikari no kuni no ohanashi Film Poster

ひかりの国のおはなしHikari no kuni no ohanashi

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 99 mins.

Director: Norio Ogikubo

Writer: N/A

Starring: Doishuu

Website

Synopsis: A documentary about memories of the womb?

 

 

Death Forest Kyoufu no Mori 3   

Death Forest Kyoufu no Mori 3 Film Poster
Death Forest Kyoufu no Mori 3 Film Poster

デスフォレスト 恐怖の森3Desu Foresuto Kyoufu no Mori 3

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 64 mins.

Director: Yasutake Torii

Writer: Satoshi Okonogi (Screenplay), Kazz (Original Game Creator)

Starring: Kayano Masuyama, Shizuka Umemoto, Hanako Takigawa, Nodoka Sakura, Asuka Kishi, Yuri Morishita, Noboru Takachi, Noboru Kaneko,

Website    IMDB

More death forest films… Here’s what I wrote for the last one and I think the comment still stands:

I never thought that the first Death Forest (released last December) would get a sequel but the Japanese film industry will adapt anything (because original ideas are too dangerous to bet on). The reason for my cynicism? These Death Forest films are 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. The new film looks worse than the first.

Synopsis: Those giant heads travel from the forest to Tokyo. So I guess they are in an urban forest… jungle??? Which one makes more sense?

The next three films look intriguing:

Mori no Cafe   

Mori no Cafe Film Poster
Mori no Cafe Film Poster

森のカフェDesu Foresuto Kyoufu no Mori 3

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 76 mins.

Director: Norio Enomoto

Writer: Norio Enomoto (Screenplay),

Starring: Yuki Kan, Kumiko Wakai, Ayu Higashi, Mao Inami, Ichiro Hashimoto, Kotaro Shiga,

Website    IMDB

Synopsis: A philosophy professor meets a mysterious girl in a forest and the two engage in conversation while they drink coffee.

 

The Sunset Drive   

The Sunset Drive Film Poster
The Sunset Drive Film Poster

サンセットドライブSansetto Doraibu

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 93 mins.

Director: Jun Himoto

Writer: Jun Himoto (Screenplay),

Starring: Hinako Saeki, Ryo Himoto, Takashi Kobayashi, Eri Sugawara,

Website    IMDB

Synopsis: A mother and father are going to divorce and break up the family. The father is ready to give custody of their two children, a girl and boy, to the mother but when the daughter is taken ill he has to look after his son. The time spent with his son makes him reassess whether he wants to proceed with this plan.

 

Kuchibiru ha doko?   

Kuchibiru ha doko Film Poster
Kuchibiru ha doko Film Poster

唇はどこ?Kuchibiru ha doko?

Release Date: December 12th, 2015

Running Time: 98 mins.

Director: Shunichi Nagasaki

Writer: Shunichi Nagasaki (Screenplay),

Starring: Natsumi Hirose, Tatsuya Miyatani, Kazuki Yamamoto, Rieko Suzuki,

Website

Synopsis: Students from Nagoya University have worked with veteran director Shunichi Nagasaki (The Witch of the West is Dead) in a film about love and life.

 

Japanese Movie Box Office Results for this Week:

 

007 Spectre (2015/12/04)

Sugiara Chiune (2015/12/05)

I Love Snoopy The Peanuts Movie (2015/12/04)

125 Years Memory (2015/12/05)

High Speed! – Free! Starting Days – (2015/12/05)

Little Prince (2015/11/21)

Girlz und Panzer der Film  (2015/11/21)

Raintree no Kuni (2015/11/21)  

Grasshopper (2015/11/07)

Gekijouban Mozu (2015/11/07)

7 thoughts on “Happy Hour, Nagasaki: Memories of My Son, Wake Up, Girls! Beyond the Bottom, Orange, W: Futatsu no Kao wo Motsu Onnatachi, Neko bun no 4, Death Forest Kyoufu no Mori 3, Mori no Café, The Sunset Drive and other Japanese Film Trailers

  1. “A philosophy professor meets a mysterious girl in a forest and the two engage in conversation while they drink coffee.”

    Careful now, you don’t want to give to much away!🙂😛

    I have to say that “Orange” sounds intriguing but that 139 run time suggests it’s an idea they might possibly have eked out a little too much.

    1. I want to watch the Death Forest trilogy if only because the first one looks like a genuine attempt at trying to be scary while the third one looks funnier. Giant heads chasing people… brrrrr…

  2. Hayley

    Oh, I hadn’t realised “Memories of My Son” was the English title for Haha to Kuraseba – I’m sort of disappointed because I’m pretty sure it’s a pun on Kazuo Kuroki’s Chichi to Kuraseba. But then again the English title for that is The Face of Jizo so I suppose there’s nothing you can do. Still, Yoji Yamada does love his movie title puns and I feel the English speaking audience is being consistantly denied access to this aspect of his genius…

    1. I’ll bow to your superior knowledge of Japanese film/literature on this one. I would never have spotted the pun. To be honest, I’ve only watched a few Yoji Yamada films but you think highly of him so I should rectify this situation immediately.

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