December, Muse Does Not Drown, Shin Kamen Rider, Kumo to Saru no Kazoku, Single8, 17 Club, Miyakojima Monogatari Futata Villa Japanese Film Trailers

Happy Weekend

Black Dress

This is the second of the two-part trailer post (first part here). I’ve been covering the Osaka Asian Film Festival 2023 this week and reviewed a whole grip of films:


Shall We Love You & Kanro


The Burden of the Past

The Narrow Road

Where Love Goes

New Religion

Swallow Flying to the South

This week also saw a changeover in titles hosted by the Japan Film Festival + with six new works available to stream for free.

What are the other films released this weekend?

December December Film Poster R

赦し   「Yurushi」

Release Date: N/A

Duration: 99 mins.

Director: Anshul Chauhan

Writer: Rand Colter, Mina Moteki, Anshul Chauhan (Script), 

Starring: Shogen, Megumi, Ryo Matsuura, Shingo Fujimori, Toru Kizu, Takuzo Shimizu, Miki Maya


Anshul Chauhan has made impressive progress since his debut, Bad Poetry Tokyo (2017), and follow-up, Kontora (2020), both award winners. I have interviewed him twice, once for Bad Poetry Tokyo and the second time for KontoraDecember is a solid courtroom drama with an impressive story of people grasping at the finer human principles of forgiveness in trying circumstances.

I reviewed it (mentioned above!)

Synopsis: A couple whose marriage broke up due to death of their high school-aged daughter are brought back together again to fight against the reduction in the prison sentence of her killer. After separating, the father and the mother have taken radically different paths in life but their tragedy unites them one more time as they as they confront the murderer and hear her out, thus setting in motion a path of redemption for the people involved. 


Muse Does Not Drown   Muse Does Not Drown Film Poster R

ミューズは溺れない Myu-zu wa Oborenai

Release Date: September 30th, 2022

Duration: 82 mins.

Director: Nozomi Asao

Writer: Nozomi Asao (Script), 

Starring: Miku Uehara, Kogarashi Wakasugi, Kokoro Morita, Yota Kawase, Hiroko Shinkai,


This is a coming-of-age film that won the Grand Prix at both the 22nd TAMA NEW WAVE and the 15th Tanabe-Benkei Film Festival. It was featured in a trailer post last year but now goes on general release.

Synopsis: Sakuko, a member of her high school’s art club, gets so into sketching a ship that she takes a tumble into the sea. Nishihara, a fellow member of the art club, witnesses the accident and draws a picture of it. This picture wins a prize at a contest and attracts a lot of attention. In an interview with a newspaper reporter, Nishihara announces that he will use Sakuko as the model for his next work and this drives Sakuko to give up her painting career and to try being creative in other ways. Things don’t pan out and this forces Sakuko to confront Nishihara in the art room and ask why he chose her to be his model. 


Shin Kamen Rider    Shin Kamen Rider Film Poster R

シン・仮面ライダー「Shin Kamen Raida-

Release Date: March 18th, 2023

Duration: 128 mins.

Director: Hideaki Anno

Writer: Hideaki Anno (Screenplay), Shotaro Ishinomori (Original Creator),

Starring: Sosuke Ikematsu, Minami Hamabe, Shinya Tsukamoto, Mirai Moriyama, Tasuku Emoto, Nanase Nishino, Suzuki Matsuo, Toru Tezuka,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Hideaki Anno, director of the Evangelion series and Shin Godzilla, achieves his dream of adapting Kamen Rider for the big screen. Sosuke Ikematsu plays the lead character who is kidnapped by SHOCKER, an evil organisation that turns people into cyborgs. Before he can be brainwashed, he escapes and launches a war against SHOCKER.


Kumo to Saru no Kazoku    Kumo to Saru no Kazoku Film Poster R

クモとサルの家族「Kumo to Saru no Kazoku

Release Date: March 18th, 2023

Duration: 82 mins.

Director: Yoshiya Nagasawa

Writer: Yoshiya Nagasawa (Screenplay),

Starring: Shohei Uno, Eri Tokunaga, Shima Tabata, Tamaki Ogawa, Mario Kuroba, Naoto Eguchi, Eiji Okuda,


Synopsis: In Edo-period Japan, a former ninja and her family live off her earnings from her work while her husband protects the household. When the kids find a man who has collapsed on a mountain pass, they get embroiled in a battle between the lord of Tsubaki domain and bounty hunters.


Single8    Single8 Film Poster R

Release Date: March 18th, 2023

Duration: 113 mins.

Director: Kazuya Konaka

Writer: Yoshiya Nagasawa (Screenplay),

Starring: Yu Uemura, Akari Takaishi, Noa Fukuzawa, Ryuuta Kuwayama, Takuji Kawakubo,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: It is the summer of 1978 and a group of high school students led by Hiroshi decide to make their own film version of Star Wars. They build a spaceship and film it with an 8mm camera. It soon becomes part of the school festival and it also becomes a way for him to get closer to a girl he has a crush on named Natsumi. To make everything work, he calls upon a film buff named Yoshio to help him.


17 Club    17 Club Film Poster R

17クラブ「17 Kurabu

Release Date: March 18th, 2023

Duration: 22 mins.

Director: Shota Mori

Writer: Shota Mori (Screenplay),

Starring: Fuka Kumazawa, Fuka Ooishi, Taisei Kurokawa, Nagisa Hanazono, Kenichi Shimada,


Self-taught filmmaker Shota Mori has made this experimental short which will be screened at Shimokitazawa’s Tollywood cinema. It  is a sci-fi story about a girl who leapt through time that combines manga aesthetics with voice over actors providing narration and live-action actors… acting.

Synopsis: Highschooler Nanashiki is an aspiring novelist and she gets great material to work on when she gains the ability to leap back in time for one second after getting into an accident at a train station. With great power comes great responsibility and she soon realises that she can make things worse with her time jumps…


Miyakojima Monogatari Futata Villa    Miyakojima Monogatari Futata Villa Film Poster R

宮古島物語ふたたヴィラ「Miyakojima Monogatari Futata Vira

Release Date: March 18th, 2023

Duration: 22 mins.

Director: Yudai Uenishi

Writer: Yudai Uenishi (Screenplay),

Starring: Katsuya Shibayama, Ai Furukawa, Mika Tokutake, Yudai Uenishi,

Synopsis: This looks like one big advertisement for Miyakojima because the director/writer/actor Yudai Uenishi owns a resort their and is not a film professional. Anyways, a real estate agent arrives on Miyakojima from Osaka in a state of despair after the collapse of the bubble economy. He intends to commit suicide but a vision of his late father persuades him to build a small villa, the Futata Villa of the title. It is a place where people can be reunited with their loved ones. That includes his estranged daughter who travels there after his death.

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