Osaka Asian Film Festival 2017 Preview


The organisers behind Osaka Asian Film Festival have started the slow trickle of information about what films will be screened and the events that will take place before and during its run from March 03rd until March 12th. The festival will have entered its 12th year of existence with this edition and it looks set to be bigger and better than ever with many pre-festival events and a selection of films that will undoubtedly entertain and enthral people from Osaka and beyond.

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Japanese Films at the Glasgow Film Festival 2017

The Glasgow Film Festival takes place from February 15th to the 26th and features lots of classics and contemporary titles. The big focus is on Toshiro Mifune and so you can see some of his greatest roles which also means some of Akira Kurosawa’s greatest films. There’s plenty for the mainstream crowd to like in that mix of period drama and action and there’s more in the contemporary titles which span genres from psychological to science fiction and there’s even an anime thrown in.

Here are the Japanese films on the programme:


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Japanese Films at the Rotterdam International Film Festival 2017

It’s a grey day in Osaka and pretty cold but I’m staying indoors for most of it since I am cleaning video game consoles. Anyway, The Rotterdam International Film Festival starts later this month and it features a plethora films from Japan that range from the familiar to the new, plus there’s some interesting little shorts. It’s a programme packed with Japanese films but actually using the website to find them was irritating due to the search options, the way information was hidden and the overall look. I’m not a fan. I searched for it so you don’t have to.

Enough of my whining, there are many great films on offer from Roman Porno to yakuza comedy and this is another great year for Rotterdam.

Here’s what’s on offer (click on the titles to be taken to pages with more information):


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The Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme 2017 Line-Up


The good folks at The Japan Foundation announced the titles that will be screened across the UK in their Touring Film Programme for 2017 and it’s an eclectic bunch of films connected by the theme of odd obsessions! The idea is to look at Japan through movies that depict desires, hopes and impulses and these cinematic delights stretch across many mediums and genres from anime romances to a documentary on a fish market.

Audiences across England, Scotland, and Ireland will get the chance to see all of this at various points from February 03rd to March 29th as the tour takes in fifteen cities with events kicking off in London at the ICA (see below for the full list of venues).

The programme is stacked with interesting titles which I will detail below:

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Japan Foundation Film Talk – The Legacy of Composer Toru Takemitsu on January 22nd

Toru Takemitsu was a self-taught musician and composer who contributed the scores to many highly-regarded, even classic, films from the 1960s and beyond. More than ninety films received his work such as many New Wave titles like Hiroshi Teshigahara’s most important films (Pitfall, Woman in the Dunes, The Face of Another) and Masaki Kobayashi’s Kaidan and Harakiri. Not only those, he worked with Akira Kurosawa (Ran), Shohei Imamura (Black Rain), and Nagisa Oshima (Empire of Passion). Here’s an example of his work:

His work melded Eastern and Western influences and his inspirations ranged from Debussy to John Cage. His work became highly regarded around the world and he won many awards. Here’s an interesting article on The Guardian website from 2013.

On Sunday, January 22nd, the Japan Foundation is hosting an event that looks over his legacy, which comes ahead of a special event where NHK Symphony Orchestra will perform his work at the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall in March. The talk will take place at King’s Place, Hall Two, 90 York Way, London, N1 9AG.

Here’s the information on the Japan Foundation event plus a link to the NHK concert which was sent out by the organisers: Continue reading “Japan Foundation Film Talk – The Legacy of Composer Toru Takemitsu on January 22nd”

Japan Foundation Free Talk – Anisong The Musical World of Anime on January 18th

Following on from last month’s Japanese avant-garde music talk with Koichi Makigami, The Japan Foundation in London has lined up another great free talk involving music and Japan only this time it’s the World of Anisong, which is probably something easier to get into but no less interesting. It’s a free event and it takes place at Foyles Bookshop on January 18th at 6:45pm. There will be an actual singer/seiyuu at the event, a certain Aya Ikeda (My Anime List profile) who I’ve never heard of since she’s involved with the girl’s anime Precure!

Here’s a video of Aya Ikeda in action:

This event is free! So if you have the time and you like Japanese culture, this is a must-attend, as far as I am concerned.

Here’s more information from the organisers:

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