Itsuka no futari, The Truth, The Path Leading to Love, Her Blue Sky, Walking Man, Welcome to Japan Hinomaru Lunch Box, Blue Hour, Vampire Clay 2, Tokyo Adios Japanese Film Trailers

Welcome to the weekend, everyone!

I hope you are all safe and well.

It’s another weekend so that means more badly translated trailers. This week has been playing catch-up with reviews I am supposed to turn in and writing down reviews for films I saw at the Kotatsu Japanese Animation Festival as well as an interview with director Takeshi Yashiro. I posted a delayed trailer post in two parts (part one / part two) and a preview of Japan Cuts Hollywood this week.

The big news is that Typhoon Habigis is about to make landfall in the Tokyo Bay area. There has been hours of rain leading up to this and rivers are swollen and people are being prepped for evacuation already. If you’re in Japan during this typhoon, take all precautions and make sure you stay indoors and stay safe and heed official warnings for evacuation if necessary. The Japan Times has a Disaster News and Information page which will be of help.

What’s released this weekend?

The Path Leading to Love    

アイニ向カッテ Ai ni Mukatte

Release Date: October 11th, 2019

Duration: 76 mins.

Director: Kohei Takayama

Writer: Kohei Takayama (Screenplay),

Starring: Ippei Tanaka, Yumi Mukai, Mika Dehara, Suzuka Minagawa, Koichi Sakaguchi,

The word minimalist could be used with this trailer. There are no big dramatics and with a combination of subdued but powerful lighting and set design, one character’s battle with alcoholism is powerfully told through encounters with the human wreckage he leaves behind. Here’s my review and an interview with director Kohei Takayama.

Synopsis: Shosuke could be a promising manga artist but his alcoholism pushes away his desire to work. It also pushed away his ex-girlfriend Sawako and threatens his relationship with his current partner Yasuko. Perhaps it is an escape from a deeper question he has: whether love is real or not. Haunted by his failings with these two women, he drifts along in life but when he gets a call from his sister in his home town that their mother is ill, Shosuke must confront whether the questions and problems he has are all an excuse for his selfishness. Perhaps the potential absence of the ones who care for him will force him to walk a path leading to love…

The Truth    The Truth Film Poster

真実  Shinjitsu

Release Date: October 11th, 2019

Duration: 106 mins.

Director: Hirokazu Kore-eda

Writer: Hirokazu Kore-eda (Screenplay),

Starring: Catherine Deneuve, Juliette Binoche, Ethan Hawke, Clementine Grenier, Ludivine Sagnier,

Website     IMDB

Following on from his win of the Palme d’Or at last year’s Cannes Film Festival with Shoplifters, Kore-eda newest film is based in France and starring some of the luminaries of French cinema with Catherine Deneuve, Juliette Binoche (Certified Copy) and Ludivine Sagnier joined by Ethan Hawke, a truly talented American actor. This is the director’s first work set outside Japan but it features the sort of family narrative he is famous for as a clan is reunited in Paris and go through a cycle of lies, resentment, love and reconciliation.

Reviews have painted this one as another good Kore-eda film. It recently played at Busan where Kore-eda won Asian Filmmaker of the Year.

Synopsis:  Fabienne (Catherine Deneuve) is a star of French cinema with the power to charm the men around her. When she publishes her memoirs, her daughter Lumir (Juliette Binoche) returns from New York to Paris with her husband (Ethan Hawke) and their young child and a reunion between mother and daughter kicks off a confrontation that leads to truths being told, accounts settled, loves and resentments confessed.

Way To Find the Best Life    Way To Find the Best Life Film Poster

最高の人生の見つけ方  Saiko no jinsei no mitsuke kata

Release Date: October 11th, 2019

Duration: 115 mins.

Director: Isshin Inudo

Writer: Isshin Inudo, Taeko Asano, Hiroyoshi Koiwai (Screenplay)

Starring: Sayuri Yoshinaga, Yuki Amami, Tsuyoshi Muro, Hikari Mitsushima, Kento Kaku, Ayaka Sasaki, Shiori Tamai,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Sachie Kitahara (Sayuri Yoshinaga) is a devoted housewife and mother while Mako Goda (Yuki Amami) is a career woman who has set up a successful hotel chain. The one thing they have in common is that they are both diagnosed with terminal illnesses and have a short time left to live and both feel emptiness in their lives. When they meet in a hospital they also encounter a 12-year-old girl who has written a bucket list. When the girl is rushed away in an emergency, they have that list and decide to fulfil it and they begin to feel happiness entering their lives again.

Itsuka no futari Itsuka no futari Film Poster

いつかのふたり  Itsuka no futari

Release Date: October 12th, 2019

Duration: 98 mins.

Director: Gen Nagao

Writer: Gen Nagao (Screenplay),

Starring: Hiroko Nakajima, Nosaki Minami, Tatsuki Ishikawa, Rena Mashita, Yoshie Suzuki, Gen Nagao,

Website

Now we’re talking! A low-budget indie drama set in Osaka! A drama about the delicate connection between mother and daughter told through leather craft.

Synopsis: Asako Kijima is a single mother and she looks after her daughter Mayu with whom she has a close relationship. After graduating from high school, Mayu had planned to move to Osaka to become a writer’s apprentice but she feels she can’t tell Asako while Asako also wants to move to Osaka but can’t tell Mayu. A shared fascination with leather crafts and the characters they meet because of it could make mother and daughter be honest with each other.

Her Blue Sky  Her Blue Sky Film Poster

空の青さを知る人よ  Sora no Aosa o Shiru Hito yo

Release Date: October 11th, 2019

Duration: 100 mins.

Director: Tatsuyuki Nagai

Writer: Mari Okada (Script), 

Starring: Shion Wakayama (Aoi Aioi), Riho Yoshioka (Akane Aioi), Ryo Yoshizawa (Shinnosuke, Kanomura/Shinno), Ken Matsudaira (Dankichi Nitobe), Atsumi Tanezaki (Chika Otaki),

Animation Production: CloverWorks

Website ANN MAL

Synopsis: Aioi and her older sister Akane have always relied upon each other since the death of their parents in an accident 13 years ago. Akane gave up her ambition of going to Tokyo with her boyfriend, a guitarist named Shinnosuke, to take care of Aoi. Since then, Aoi has felt indebted to her older sister. One day, Aoi is invited to perform at a music festival as a session musician by a famous enka singer named Dankichi. It’s now that Shinnosuke returns to Aoi and Akane’s town and he’s not the only one as a boy named Shinno mysteriously appears— and it turns out he is actually Shinnosuke from 13 years ago after travelling from the past to the present—and Aoi falls in love for the first time.

Walking Man    Walking Man Film Poster

ウオーキングマン  Uo-kingu no man

Release Date: October 11th, 2019

Duration: 95 mins.

Director: ANARCHY

Writer: Aki Kajiwara (Screenplay/Original Creator), Shin Kibayashi (Novel)

Starring: Shuhei Nomura, Mio Yuki, Shuji Kashiwabara, Yumi Ito, Makiko Watanabe, Renji Ishibashi, Makoto Togashi, Hosshan,

Website IMDB

The rapper ANARCHY makes his directorial debut with an autobiographical story of how he became an MC. It stars Shuhei Nomura (Puzzle).

Synopsis: Atom comes from a poor family in Kawasaki. A shy kid growing up due to his stutter, he now works every day as a part-timer in the waste collection business but when his mother suffers a serious illness due to an accident, the family begins to struggle even more with bills. With no help available, Atom stumbles upon rap music and a way out of his difficult life begins to emerge.

Welcome to Japan Hinomaru Lunch Box    Welcome to Japan Hinomaru Lunch Box Film Poster

WELCOME TO JAPAN 日の丸ランチボックス  Welcome to Japan hinomaru ranchi bokkusu

Release Date: October 11th, 2019

Duration: 87 mins.

Director: Yoshihiro Nishimura

Writer: Yoshihiro Nishimura, Jun Tsugita (Screenplay), 

Starring: Kimmy Suzuki, Hiroko Yashiki, Cyborg Kaori, Miyuki Torii, Ena Fujita, Kentaro Shimazu, Ririne Sasano, Yu Yasuda,

Website IMDB

Yoshihiro Nishimura (Helldriver, Vampire Girl vs. Frankenstein Girl , Tokyo Gore Police, Mutant Girls Squad), we meet again. His splatter films can be undisciplined but this one is a manageable 82 minute killer extravaganza. 

Synopsis: The year: 2020. The place: Japan. A major “World Sports Tournament Which is Not the Olympics but Quite Similar” is due to be held and that means lots of foreigners are going to arrive in Japan. In order to protect Japan from bad foreigners, a far-right organisation has a trained female killer named Kika to greet them. She was raised to be a merciless massacre artist but her character changes when she meets an idol girl…

Blue Hour    Blue Hour Film Poster

ブルーアワーにぶっ飛ばす Buru- Awa- ni Buttobasu

Release Date: October 11th, 2019

Duration: 92 mins.

Director: Yuko Hakota

Writer: Yuko Hakota (Screenplay),

Starring: Kaho, Shim Eun-Kyung, Daichi Watanabe, Denden, Kaho Minami, Kyusaku Shimada, Daisuke Kuroda, Yusuke Santamaria,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Sunada (Kaho) is a 30-years-old CM director living in Tokyo. She is unhappy about the direction of her life and decides to return to her hometown of Ibaraki where her grandmother is in hospital. Accompanying her is her best friend Kiyoura (Shim Eun-Kyung).

Vampire Clay 2    Vampire Clay 2 Film Poster

血を吸う粘土派生 「Chi wo su nendo hasei

Release Date: October 11th, 2019

Duration: 100 mins.

Director:  Soichi Umezawa

Writer: Soichi Umezawa, Jun Koyama (Screenplay),

Starring: Asuka Kurosawa, Kanji Tsuda, Shinji Kasahara, Leila Masamoto, Amiko, Mirei, Karen Aizome, 

Website IMDB

Writer/director Soichi Umezawa has had a long career as a special effects and make-up artist on many doramas and films like those of the Tomie franchise, low-budget sci-fi action flick like Alien vs Ninja, the chilling ghost story Dead Waves and the rather excellent Kiyoshi Kurosawa film Bright Future. That one’s not a horror but it features jellyfish which some may find horrific if stung by one. His feature film debut Vampire Clay became a low-budget breakout hit thanks to Umezawa’s special effects skills which are pretty good in a goofy way – gooey and creepy dolls made from clay that stalk a rural art school and bump off students one by one a la John Carpenter’s The Thing. The sequel unleashes more of the creepy monsters and some returning characters… Sitges Film Festival Fantastic Selection 2019”

Synopsis: At the end of the last film, it was revealed that the clay was discovered by the artist Yozo Fushimi and the clay monsters that escaped captured by two survivors and imprisoned in a crate. Well guess what? Yozo’s body contained some of the clay and it looks like it’s about to get loose again.

 

Tokyo Adios   

東京アディオス  Tokyo Adiosu

Release Date: October 11th, 2019

Duration: 107 mins.

Director: Junji Otsuka

Writer: Junji Otsuka, Yuji Uchida (Screenplay), 

Starring: Yokosuka Utamaru, Yurina Yanagi, Fusako Urabe, Noriko Fujita,

Website

Synopsis: What is it to be an entertainer? Do you need to be on TV or represented by an agency? Do you need to be famous? There are “underground performers” who are mostly unknown but pursue their own styles. Yokosuka Utamaro is one such entertainer. Called the “Emperor”, he entertains from the shadows and that doesn’t pay much which sucks because there’s always rent and the need to eat. He does have fans like Yuri Yanagi and she both inspires and supports his creativity as he strives to entertain her but the going is tough for the both of them and Yokosuka enters a realm of madness as he tries to create a super-fantasy play where a man dedicated to laughing falls …

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