The Night I Swam, A Seaside Weekly Tabloid, Seinaru Mono, Stray Dogz 8, Walking with My Grandma, Seven Colours★Rocket, Ninagawa Yukio Theatre 2 “midokumaru fainaru”, Tenshi Ja nai!, Sore sore ga yattekitara…, Detective Conan: Zero the Enforcer, Eiga Crayon Shin-chan Bakumori! Kung-Fu Boys ~Ramen Tairan~ Japanese Film Trailers

Happy Weekend, People!

I’m at the end of day six of a twelve day work week and I’m feeling okay but there is a lot of content I need to publish as well as working on things for my regular job. This week saw me post about introducing some films at a festival, the rather excellent line-up of films at the Udine Far East Film Festival, and the rather superb Japanese twosome in competition at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. I’m going to keep the pace up with a post tomorrow and break with my regular schedule of Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday, to keep posting content I have waiting to be released. That’s not including a festival I’m helping put together later this year. Heck, I updated the trailers for last year’s Osaka Asian Film Festival earlier today… I like being busy.

What is released this weekend in Japan?

Continue reading “The Night I Swam, A Seaside Weekly Tabloid, Seinaru Mono, Stray Dogz 8, Walking with My Grandma, Seven Colours★Rocket, Ninagawa Yukio Theatre 2 “midokumaru fainaru”, Tenshi Ja nai!, Sore sore ga yattekitara…, Detective Conan: Zero the Enforcer, Eiga Crayon Shin-chan Bakumori! Kung-Fu Boys ~Ramen Tairan~ Japanese Film Trailers”

Japanese Films at the Udine Far East Film Festival 2018

The Udine Far East Film Festival plays from April 20th to the 28th and it is the 20th year it has been in operation. There are over 80 films programmed with a strong contingent from Japan. Also at the festival are many films from across the rest of Asia, some of which got there world premieres at the Osaka Asian Film Festival last month – No. 1 Chung Ying Street. More interestingly, there’s a celebration of Brigitte Lin so that means screenings of Chungking Express and Dragon Inn!!!!

This is a film blog dedicated to Japanese cinema so I’m covering the Japanese films now but I will endeavour to get reviews for as many of these titles as possible!

What are the Japanese films programmed for the festival?

Udine Far East Film Festival Logo

Continue reading “Japanese Films at the Udine Far East Film Festival 2018”

Kotatsu Japanese Animation Festival presents: Japanese Animated Shorts at Cardiff International Animation Festival 2018

Lady Nosferatu Film Image

On Saturday April 21st and Sunday April 22nd, staff from Kotatsu Japanese Animation Festival will be at Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff to present a series of short film screenings from Japan as part of the Cardiff International Animation Festival (CIAF). These are from a special programme of animated graduate films from Japan’s top National art University, Tokyo National University of Arts Graduate School and Kotatsu was able to get these thanks to Professor Yuichi Ito who oversees the course and came to last year’s Kotatsu Japanese Animation Festival.

The stories are some of the best to have been produced by graduates from the university and this is a rare chance to see the likes of them outside of the London International Animated Film Festival and Japan. Here are more details on the CIAF page and a Geidai page set up to showcase some of the content.

Continue reading “Kotatsu Japanese Animation Festival presents: Japanese Animated Shorts at Cardiff International Animation Festival 2018”

Yamato California, Minatomachi, Chronicle of the After-School Wars, Liverleaf, The Bastard and the Beautiful World, Call Boy, Too Unbelievable of a Woman: Defendant Yoshie, father kanbojia he shiawase o todoketa goccahn shinpu no monogatari, The Werewolf Game: Inferno, I Will Never Forgive, Ninagawa Yukio Theatre 2 “Ninagawa MacBeth”, Gekijouban Servamp: Alice in the Garden Japanese Film Trailers

Hello, dear readers.

Only Yesterday Film Image 2

A bit of a subdued opening to this week’s trailer post because of the death of Isao Takahata at the age of 82. This is a sad moment because he was a true creative genius. Anyone familiar with his films and TV shows will know that, as well as founding Ghibli and supporting artists, he was a groundbreaking artist himself and pushed boundaries. Look at the difference in style and story from his directorial debut The Little Norse Prince to the heartbreaking Grave of the Fireflies and his last film, Princess Kaguya. My personal favourite is Only Yesterday which, despite my best resistance, got me crying floods of tears at the end. Pom Poko was another that broke through my defences but the most potent was Grave. I cannot watch that film again. It broke me the first time. I sincerely hope Takahata has found peace and his family find comfort in this trying time.

This week saw me post about the Japan Film Festival Ireland and Mari Okada visiting the UK.

What’s released this weekend?

Continue reading “Yamato California, Minatomachi, Chronicle of the After-School Wars, Liverleaf, The Bastard and the Beautiful World, Call Boy, Too Unbelievable of a Woman: Defendant Yoshie, father kanbojia he shiawase o todoketa goccahn shinpu no monogatari, The Werewolf Game: Inferno, I Will Never Forgive, Ninagawa Yukio Theatre 2 “Ninagawa MacBeth”, Gekijouban Servamp: Alice in the Garden Japanese Film Trailers”

Mari Okada Visits the UK in April: Lighthouse Cinema in Dublin on Saturday 14th April and the Prince Charles Cinema in London on Monday 16th April

Okada Mari Image
Image from: https://woman.infoseek.co.jp/news/entertainment/dmenueiga_1103087

In big news for UK anime fans, veteran writer Mari Okada will attend two screenings of her film Maquia: When the Promised Flower Blooms in April. This is a film which she wrote and directed and it is getting two special screenings ahead of a cinema release in the UK and Ireland on June 27th. Indeed, it’s her debut as a director and Okada will do a live Q&A session at both screenings so go on down to the screenings to find out how it was made and, just as importantly, to make the very talented Mari Okada feel welcome in the UK!

Here are the details:

Continue reading “Mari Okada Visits the UK in April: Lighthouse Cinema in Dublin on Saturday 14th April and the Prince Charles Cinema in London on Monday 16th April”

A Preview of the Japanese Film Festival Ireland 2018 – “The Sower” and “The Night is Short, Walk on Girl” headline a great programme

The Japanese Film Festival Ireland is back for its 10th year and the event kicks off on April 08th and lasts until the 21st as a diverse programme of films made in Japan over the last year and a half are screened. This list features some of the best films to have been given a release including two titles by Masaaki Yuasa, the hottest talent in anime right now, and also, The Sower, a finely controlled human drama that is both beautiful and haunting. It made me cry every time I watched it. I have watched it around five times! That shows you its power!

A selection of the films will be hosted at each of the venues stretching from Cork, Galway, Limerick, Tipperary, Dublin, Sligo, Waterford and finally to Dundalk over the next month so check out the website to see which venues have which films.

Here are the films programmed:

The Sower      

種をまく人  Tane o maku hito」    

Running Time: 117 mins.

Release Date: 2016

Director: Yosuke Takeuchi

Writer: Yosuke Takeuchi (Screenplay)

Starring: Kentaro Kishi, Suzuno Takenaka, Tomomitsu Adachi, Arisa Nakajima, Ichika Takeuchi,

IMDB           Website

I had the pleasure of watching this as part of the Osaka Asian Film Festival where I also met its director, Yosuke Takeuchi. It’s a fine film, one of the best I have seen in recent years. Its genesis comes from the personal life of the director and also the life of Vincent van Gogh and how the artist lived a humble and naive existence to the full despite the treatment he faced from society. That story is reflected in not just one of the main characters, the titular “Sower”, but also the people around him. Through their story, a wider one about the treatment of outsiders occurs. This is a remarkable drama that I have seen five times and I am impressed by it which is why I am highlighting it as part of this festival.

Here’s my review for V-Cinema for The Sower.

Synopsis: Mitsuo was one of those brave souls who answered the call for volunteers to clear out the debris left behind by the Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami. The strain of the task proved to be too much and he spent three years in psychiatric care. Upon his release, Mitsuo finds solace in reuniting with his brother and his nieces Chie and Itsuki. But a tragic accident soon disrupts the newly found happiness when the two girls are left in his care and Itsuki is killed. Though he had no direct involvement in the incident, Mitsuo is blamed and this causes him and the people around him to deal with the burden of guilt and the struggle for atonement.

Continue reading “A Preview of the Japanese Film Festival Ireland 2018 – “The Sower” and “The Night is Short, Walk on Girl” headline a great programme”