We present a list of 10 Films you cannot miss at the Japanese Film Festival that is taking place from October 14th – December 4th in various cities from Australia.
After the Storm by Koreeda Hirokazu – Japan | 2016 – 117 min.
Dwelling on his past glory as a prize-winning author, Ryota wastes his money on gambling and can barely pay child support. Renewing contact with his initially distrusting family, Ryota struggles to take back control of his existence and to find a lasting place in the life of his young son until a stormy summer night offers them a chance to truly bond again.
10.26.2016 – Event Cinemas Brisbane City Myer Centre (Brisbane) – 7:00 pm
11.17.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 7:00 pm
11.24.2016 – ACMI (Melbourne) – 7:20 pm
Creepy by Hiroshi Fukasawa – Japan | 2016 – 130 min.
Detective Takakura quits the police force after a traumatic incident at work. To start fresh, he relocates to a quiet suburb with wife Yasuko and starts teaching at a university. Life at work is pleasant, unlike his former high-pressure job. With time in his hands, Takakura starts helping a former colleague on an unsolved missing person case.
Life at home is uneasy as Yasuko struggles to adjust to their unfriendly neighbourhood. When she finally befriends their socially awkward neighbour, Nishino, the tension and strangeness creep closer into the couples’ lives.
Fresh off Cannes Film Festival with the award-winning drama Journey to the Shore, director Kiyoshi Kurosawa is back in his element with Creepy. He directs a stellar cast who capture the mystery with quiet ferocity and gripping intensity.
10.21.2016 – Capitol Cinemas Manuka (Caberra) – 7:00 pm
10.22.2016 – Mercury Cinema (Adelaide) – 8:20 pm
10.27.2016 – Event Cinemas Brisbane City Myer Centre (Brisbane) – 6:00 pm
10.29.2016 – Event Cinemas Brisbane City Myer Centre (Brsibane) – 8:30 pm
11.04.2016 – Hoyts Cannington (Perth) – 8:15 pm
11.06.2016 – Hoyts Cannington (Perth) – 2:50 pm
11.09.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 8:15 pm
11.23.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 8:00 pm
11.26.2016 – ACMI (Melbourne) – 9:00 pm
12.03.2016 – ACMI (Melbourne) – 6:30 pm
Destruction Babies by Mariko Tetsuya – Japan | 2016 – 108 min.
Mitsuhama, a small and boring port city in Japan. Abandoned by their parents, Taira and Shouta Ashiwara, two teenage brothers, live in a shipyard by the sea. Taira often fights with students from other parts of the town, but one day, he disappears after being beaten up. While Shouta keeps looking for him everywhere, Taira begins a violent journey through the streets of the city, looking for tough men to beat up, driven by his obstinate ego that refuses to lose. Will he ever stop fighting?
11.23.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 7:45 pm
11.25.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 8:45 pm
11.30.2016 – Hoyts Melbourne Central (Melbourne) – 9:00 pm
Godzilla by Ishiro Honda – Japan | 1954 – 97 min.
The residents of Odo Island believe that an ancient sea creature called ‘Godzilla’ resides in their waters. After Japanese freight ships are destroyed and the island is ravaged by an unseen force, the government sends palaeontologist Yamane to investigate. What they discover is a monstrous abomination: a prehistoric animal that has evolved due to nuclear radiation. And what they don’t know is it’s headed straight for Tokyo!
Godzilla is a thrilling spectacle which has risen to cult status over the years. Yet, beneath its sci-fi overtones is a humane narrative which reflects the social atmosphere of post-war Japan. Made not long after the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, this film makes a fearful statement on the impact of nuclear weaponry upon the land and all life forms.
Witness the legendary king of kaiju in this digitally restored version of the original, Japanese Godzilla from 1954. Screening in Australian cinemas for the first time, one night only in Sydney and Melbourne
11.22.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 6:30 pm
11.29.2016 – ACMI (Melbourne) – 7:50 pm
My Korean Teacher by Yuzo Asahara – Japan | 2016 – 98 min.
After losing both job and girlfriend, things aren’t looking too great for Yong Woon, a Korean expat in Japan. A chance meeting in Okinawa catapults him into a teaching role at a Korean language school. There he meets Sakura, a single mother who is desperate to improve her language skills in order to keep her job at a travel agency. Sympathising with her struggles, Yong Woon helps her and falls in love with her in the process.
Featuring Korean popstar Yesung from Super Junior in his first Japanese movie role, My Korean Teacher is an entertaining watch that will put a smile on your face and brighten your day. Filmed in Okinawa, the story is set against the backdrop of beautiful castles, stunning beaches and small city life.
11.20.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 8:30 pm
11.26.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 6:45 pm
12.04.2016 – Hoyts Melbourne Central (Melbourne) – 4:50 pm
Nagasaki: Memories of My Son by Yoji Yamada – Japan | 2015 – 130 min.
“Mother, you wouldn’t let me go so I had a hard time getting here, but I’ve finally made it.” August 9th, 1948, Nobuko, a midwife in Nagasaki, is stunned when she is suddenly visited by her son Koji, who she thought had died three years ago when an atomic bomb fell on the city. That same day, she had stood before his grave and told herself: “In that instant, he was gone. It’s time to let him go…”
11.18.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 8:15 pm
11.22.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 6:15 pm
12.04.2016 – ACMI (Melbourne) – 2:00 pm
The Inerasable by Yoshihiro Nakamura – Japan | 2016 – 107 min.
One night, university student Kubo hears odd sweeping noises over the tatami of her new apartment. Troubled, she writes to a renowned horror novelist to help solve the mystery. Sensing a lingering spirit, the pair investigates previous tenants and landowners, uncovering a string of tragedies spanning the decades. As they’ll soon discover, some mysteries are better left undisturbed.
10.30.2016 – Event Cinemas Brisbane City Myer Centre (Brisbane) – 3:45 pm
11.03.2016 – Hoyts Cannington (Perth) – 8:35 pm
11.18.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 6:15 pm
11.22.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 8:45 pm
11.25.2016 – Hoyts Melbourne Central (Melbourne) – 6:30 pm
The Long Excuse by Nishikawa Miwa – Japan | 2016 – 124 min.
The Long Excuse tells the story of a husband left alone by his wife’s sudden death after 20 years of marriage. Sachio is a writer living a celebrity life occasionally aired on TV. In spite of what is publicly shown, he suffers from self-loathing, and doesn’t even like his own name. While his wife takes a weekend trip with her old friend, he is having an affair with a young woman in the marital bed. After his wife and her friend die in an accident, he plays the perfect, grieving husband at the funeral, where he runs into Omiya, the husband of his wife’s friend. Although both of them are in the same situation as new widowers, Sachio tries to keep his distance from Omiya at first. However, he volunteers to support Omiya’s family.
Nishikawa Miwa excels in constructing characters by details of cinematic elements like small acts. The interaction between two men with contrasting personalities serves as great energizer to lead the story. That energy drives the audience to follow the story of the protagonist whom we don’t want to sympathize with but feel like we’ve known. (PARK Sungho BIFF Catalogue 2016)
11.27.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 6:00 pm
11.28.2016 – ACMI (Melbourne) – 6:30 pm
12.04.2016 – ACMI (Melbourne) – 7:00 pm
The Sun by Yu Irie – Japan | 2016 – 130 min.
In a post-apocalyptic world, surviving humans are divided into two: the genetically superior Nox, who live in the darkness, and the weaker Curio, who remain unevolved. The Nox have superseded Curios in every aspect of society, despite their weakness to sunlight. They live technologically advanced lives within gated settlements, while the Curio make do in open country villages.
Yuu and Tetsuhiko are teenagers living in a Curio village. While Tetsuhiko is sick of the sub-par conditions and desperately wants to become a Nox, Yuu wants nothing to do with them. Both, however, desire a change – for themselves and their village.
11.24.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 7:45 pm
12.01.2016 – ACMI (Melbourne) – 6:30 pm
Wolf Girl & Black Prince by Ryuichi Hiroki – Japan | 2016 – 116 min.
Erika Shinohara is a first-year high school student who has never had a boyfriend. She lies about having one to her more experienced friends but they soon become suspicious of her many wild claims. Desperate, she takes a photo of a stranger as “proof” of his existence, only to find out that the stranger is none other than the idol of their school, Kyoya Sata.
Faced with the prospect of having her lies exposed, Erika is blackmailed into becoming Kyoya’s dog in exchange for keeping up the façade. Yet despite a barrage of demeaning remarks and insults, Erika begins to discover that the aloof boy she picked up isn’t nearly as black-hearted as he likes to act. Will the “Wolf Girl” end up falling for the “Black Prince”?
10.28.2016 – Event Cinemas Brisbane City Myer Centre (Brisbane) – 7:15 pm
11.06.2016 – Hoyts Cannington (Perth) – 4:10 pm
11.20.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 11:10 am
11.25.2016 – Event Cinemas George Street (Sydney) – 6:00 pm
11.25.2016 – Hoyts Melbourne Central (Melbourne) – 6:45 pm