Anoko no Toriko, Perfect World, You Are the Apple of My Eye, Kyoukaishi, Morgen, Ashita, Monster Strike The Movie: Sora no Kanata, Re:ZERO -Starting Life in Another World- Memory Snow, Usuzumizakura -Garo-, K SEVEN STORIES Episode3, Heartbeat, Single Mom Yasashii Kazoku。 a sweet family, Charlotte-Susabi Japanese Film Trailers

Happy weekend, everyone!

I hope you are well!

I’ve got past the Kotatsu Japanese Animation Festival work, I’m between otome games, and I’m not doing as much overtime in my regular job at the minute but I still don’t have much time to watch films or do much else. I’m trying to jam in as much writing, English/Japanese/French practice and films as possible and I’m also looking to try and sneak in some video games – Tactics Ogre in Japanese? One of the Persona games?

I am currently working on a review for a Malaysian film at the moment and considering purchasing some Thai cinema classics from the mid-00s since I’ve only got one or two.

This week, I posted reviews for Amiko and Born Bone Born which I reviewed a couple of months ago.

What is released this weekend in Japanese cinemas?

Anoko no Toriko    Anoko no Toriko Film Poster

あのコの、トリコ。 Anoko no Toriko

Running Time: 99 mins.

Release Date: October 05th, 2018

Director: Ryo Miyawaki

Writer: Taeko Asano (Screenplay), Yuki Shiraishi (Original Manga)

Starring: Ryo Yoshizawa, Yuko Araki, Yosuke Sugino, Rio Uchida, Daimao Kosaka, Reiko Takashima, Goro Kishitani,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Three childhood friends promised to make it big in show business but for one, it doesn’t happen quite as soon as the others. Yori Suzuki (Ryo Yoshizawa) is the “plain Jane” of the trio. His crush, Shizuku Tachibana (Yuko Araki) is a model, and then there’s Subaru Tojo (Yosuke Sugino), an actor. Looking on at their success, Yori decides to make a move and transfers to Tachibana’s high school and becomes her assistant on CM shoots. On one particular shoot, he gets in a shot and gains popularity as the “mysterious boy” but just as things are looking up, Tojo confesses his feelings to Tachibana when the two appear together on stage…

Perfect World    Perfect World Film Poster

パーフェクトワールド 君といる奇跡 Pafekuto Warudo: Kimi to Iru Kiseki

Running Time: 102 mins.

Release Date: October 05th, 2018

Director: Kenji Shibayama

Writer: Keiko Kanome (Screenplay), Rie Aruga (Original Manga)

Starring: Hana Sugisaki, Sei Ashina, Takanori Iwata, Aya Ohmasa, Kenta Suga, Naomi Zaizen,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Tsugumi Kawana (Hana Sugisaki) used to love Itsuki Ayukawa (Takanori Iwata) when he was her senior in high school but parted ways after graduation. They reunite as adults as she works as an interior designer and he works as an architect but they feels awkward since he is disabled and in a wheelchair. The two slowly overcome their initial feelings as they become attracted to each other’s characters…

You Are the Apple of My Eye    You Are the Apple of My Eye Film Poster

あの頃、君を追いかけ Ano Koro, Kimi wo Oikaketa

Running Time: 114 mins.

Release Date: October 05th, 2018

Director: Yasuo Hasegawa

Writer: Kenzaburo Iida (Screenplay), Giddens Ko (Original Novel)

Starring: Yuki Yamada, Asuka Saito, Honoka Matsumoto, Takara Sakumoto, Naoki Kunishima, Keisuke Nakata, Ryosuke Yusa,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: High school student and all-round class-clown Kosuke Mizushima (Yuki Yamada) has a crush on model student Mai Hayase (Asuka Saito) but when one of his jokes goes too far, Hayase is put in charge of looking after the boy. This inevitably leads to them spending time together and, you guessed it, despite their differing personalities, getting closer…

Kyoukaishi    Kyoukaishi Film Poster

教誨師 Kyoukaishi

Running Time: 114 mins.

Release Date: October 06th, 2018

Director: Dai Sako

Writer: Dai Sako (Screenplay),

Starring: Ren Osugi, Reo Tamaoki, Setsuko Karasuma, Takeo Gozu, Noboru Ogawa, Kenji Furutachi, Ken Mitsuishi,

Website

This was Ren Osugi’s last film before he passed away in February this year. He produced this project. Can you imagine being one of the actors selected to play one of these roles? It would be an honour.

Synopsis: Saeki (Ren Osugi) is a prison chaplain who works with death-row inmates. He is good at communicating with them and uses this skill to try and reform them but he agonizes over whether he makes a difference in their lives and whether he is doing the right thing. He also tries to avoid facing an incident in his past…

Morgen, Ashita    Morgen, Ashita Film Poster

モルゲン、明日 Morugen, Ashita

Running Time: 71 mins.

Release Date: October 06th, 2018

Director: Masako Sakata

Writer: N/A

Starring: N/A

Website

Synopsis: Masako Sakata has made anti-nuclear documentaries in the past and has travelled around the world to see the negative effects of nuclear energy. In this documentary, she travels to Germany, a country pushing its renewable energies programme into new territory as it prepares to decommission all of its nuclear power plants by 2022. Sakata interview all sorts of German people.

Monster Strike The Movie: Sora no Kanata   Monster Strike The Movie Sora no Kanata Film Poster

モンスターストライク THE MOVIE ソラノカナタ 「Monsuta- Sutoraiku THE MOVIE Sora no Kanata

Release Date: October 05th, 2018

Running Time: 97 mins.

Director: Hiroshi Nishikiori

Writer: Takuya Ikami (Screenplay),

Starring: Alice Hirose (Sora), Aoi Yuki (Yuna), Koichi Yamadera (Senju), Masataka Kubota (Kanata), Yoshimasa Hosoya (Toya),

Animation Production: Orange

Website  ANN MAL

Synopsis: It has been over a decade since half of Tokyo broke off and floated into the sky. Renamed, “Old Tokyo” people there were unable to communicate with the land-based “New Tokyo”, the part that stayed on the ground. The two parts of the city maintained separate worlds but when a young girl discovers that Old Tokyo will fall back down to the ground, she sets tries to descend to New Tokyo to save the citizens from the impending crisis.

Re:ZERO -Starting Life in Another World- Memory Snow    Re ZERO -Starting Life in Another World- Memory Snow Film Poster

Re:ゼロから始める異世界生活 Memory Snow Re:Zero kara hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu

Release Date: October 06th, 2018

Running Time: 68 mins.

Chief Director: Tatsuya Koyanagi, Director: Masaharu Watanabe,

Writer: Masahiro Yokotani (Screenplay), Tappei Nagatsuki (Scenario/Original Creator)

Starring: Yusuke Kobyayashi (Subaru), Inori Minase (Rem), Rie Murakawa (Ram), Rie Takahashi (Emilia), Yumi Uchiyama (Puck),

Animation Production: White Fox

Website  ANN MAL

Synopsis: After our hapless hero Subaru and his friends rescue the children of Irlam village by defeating the Demon Beast Wolgarm, he finds himself given a secret mission he must not let anyone find out about. However, his cover is blown from the start when Petra and other children of the village spot him. Doesn’t sound bad, right? Well, not doing the mission jeopardises Subaru’s “date course” with Emilia…

Usuzumizakura -Garo-   Usuzumizakura -Garo- Film Poster

薄墨桜 GARO Usuzumizakura -Garo-

Release Date: October 06th, 2018

Running Time: 82 mins.

Director: Satoshi Nishimura

Writer: Yasuko Kobayashi (Screenplay), Keita Amemiya (Original Creator)

Starring: Masei Nakayama (Raiko), Romi Park (Seimei), Akiko Yajima (Kintoki), Atsuko Tanaka (Akira), Tomokazu Seki (Takeru),

Animation Production: Studio M2, Studio VOLN

Website  ANN MAL

Synopsis from MAL: Set during the Heian Period, Kyo is a beautiful city that is proud of its glory. Two beautiful onmyouji meet, and the sad and short-lived beautiful cherry blossom starts to stir after 1000 years.

K SEVEN STORIES Episode 3 Lost Small World ~ Ori No Mukou Ni Beyond the cage ~」   K SEVEN STORIES Episode3 「Lost Small World ~ Ori No Mukou Ni Beyond the cage ~」

K SEVEN STORIES Episode 3 Lost Small World ~檻の向こうに~」

Release Date: October 06th, 2018

Running Time: 69 mins.

Director: Shingo Suzuki

Writer: Azano Kouhei (Screenplay), GoRA, GoHands (Original Creator)

Starring: Mamoru Miyano (Saruhiko Fushimi), Fun Fukuyama, Yui Ogura (Aya Oogai), Satomi Akasaka (Kisa Fushimi), Shinichiro Miki (Niki Fushimi),

Animation Production: GoHands

Website   ANN MAL K Wiki ANN Honey

Synopsis: This is the fourth of K SEVEN STORIES, a series of spin-off films that draw upon the novels and manga of the “K” franchise. Lost Small World sees Munakata bringing in Saruhiko Fushimi into the ranks of Scepter 4 so he joins the Blue clan. Due to his past as a member of Homura, it seems that he is able to harness two different auras at the same time which makes him a special person.

Heartbeat   Shokou Film Poster

曙光 Shokou

Running Time: 120 mins.

Release Date: October 06th, 2018

Director: Katsumi Sakaguchi

Writer: Katsumi Sakaguchi (Screenplay),

Starring: Asuka Kurosawa, Futoshi Moriyama, Yura Semono, Shoichiro Tanaka, Wanjiro Tokyo, Misako Kano, Shun Tanigawa,

Website IMDB

Synopsis from IMDB: Japan is renowned as a suicide nation where around 80 people daily and 30,000 people annually commit suicide. 13 years ago, Fumie (Asuka Kurosawa (A Snake of June by Shinya Tsukamoto, Cold Fish by Sion Sono)) lost her daughter who committed suicide as a result of being bullied at her school. After the ordeal, Fumie, together with her son, returned to her parents’ home in a mountainous area, to create an organization called ‘Heartbeat.’ She attempts to rescue people who are likely to attempt suicide. Fumie who supports them through inviting them into a communal life where whilst also experiencing her sorrow and emotional conflicts over the loss of her own daughter. One day, a man who is attempting to commit suicide calls Fumie. The man who is rescued by her takes on a violent and insolent attitude. Fumie feels anxious but takes him back home. That night, an unexpected situation hits her…

Single Mom Yasashii Kazoku a sweet family   Single Mom Yasashii Kazoku。 a sweet family Film Poster

single mom 優しい家族。 a sweet family Single Mom Yasashii Kazokua sweet family

Running Time: 98 mins.

Release Date: October 06th, 2018

Director: Kazumi Matsumoto

Writer: Kazumi Matsumoto (Screenplay),

Starring: Rina Uchiyama, Hanon Hasegawa, Kanako Nishikawa, Atsuko Okamoto, Maho Morikawa,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Niseko Town in Hokkaido is the setting for a story of a single-mother named Aimi Sora (Rina Uchiyama) and her daughter Emily (Hanon Hasegawa) told in a series of episodes. These stories are based on real life cases. Aimi finds it hard to get a job and is using up her savings. She also feels exhausted every day. Arguments happen in her family and she wants to find love. The first step to solving her problem is to go to the town office and it is there that she meets another single-mother, a city employee named Miyuki. Through this one encounter, Aimi’s life begins to change…

Charlotte-Susabi   Charlotte-Susabi Film Poster

シャルロット すさび Sharurotto Susabi

Running Time: 114 mins.

Release Date: October 06th, 2018

Director: Masaki Iwana

Writer: Masaki Iwana (Screenplay),

Starring: Ai Suzuki, Yuri Osawa, Kyoko Takahashi, Clara Elena Cuda, Mamoru Narita, D’Dee, Hiroshi Okazaki,

Website IMDB

Masaki Iwana was born in 1945 in Tokyo and is a famous Butoh artist. Since 1988, he has lived and worked in France and travelled around the world performing. He has made indie films combining his philosophy on life and Butoh with his first feature film Vermilion Souls (2008) and his second A Summer Family (2010). Both have received official selections from numerous international film festivals including the Rotterdam Film Festival. His latest film was crowd-funded, so this is truly indie.

Synopsis from the filmmaker’s website: A small ordinary love story gradually transforms itself into an almost mythological epic poem.

Charlotte-Susabi is a surrealistic drama in which a Japanese artist Kamimura, disillusioned by the world and himself, combats and connects with the world before him – as he moves freely among reality, memory and fantasy through the three women who are involved with him.

Passage of Life 

僕の帰る場所 Boku no kaerubashoPassage of Life Film Poster

Running Time: 100 mins.

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  Akio Fujimoto

Writer: Akio Fujimoto (Screenplay)

Starring: Kaung Myat Thu, Khin Myat Thu, Issace, Htet Myat Naing, Yuki Kitagawa, Kanji Tsuda,

IMDB Website

Fujimoto, a first-time feature film director, worked with non-professional actor and their efforts ensured the film won the Spirit of Asia Award, given by the Japan Foundation Asia Center at last year’s Tokyo International Film Festival. I reviewed it when it was part of the Osaka Asian Film Festival and appreciated its realist style and insight into migratory patterns in Asia. Here’s my review after I saw the film as part of Osaka.

Synopsis: Passage of Life is based on reality and shows the lives of a Burmese family that emigrated to Japan with no visa. Khin and her husband Issace have an uncertain home with their two boys, 7-year-old Kaung and his younger brother Htet. The boys were raised in Japan and are happy. Their parents are not.

Without the proper paperwork, a secure life is impossible and all hope lies with obtaining political refugee status which seems impossible to get in Japan. However, the stress is too much for Khin who is hospitalised with depression. She decides to take the kids back to Burma which is when the film switches focus to depict the inner struggles of Kaung who struggles with a great change in his environment and longs for the place he calls home: Japan.

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