20 Films you cannot miss at the 19th Japanese Film Festival Nippon Connection (Part 2)


We present the second part of our list of twenty films you cannot miss at the 19th Japanese Film Festival Nippon Connection which will take place from May 28th – June 2nd, 2019 in Frankfurt, Germany.

Note: Ticket presale started on May 11th, for more information please visit the Nippon Connection website:


Killing by Shinya Tsukamoto – Japan | 2018 – 80 minutes

The ronin Mokunoshin helps out on a farm while also training the owners’ son Ichisuke and falling in love with their daughter Yu. One day an older samurai appears in the village to recruit warriors for an impending civil war. With its narrative slowly descending into a feverish nightmare, KILLING deconstructs the samurai code and sharply criticizes the concept of glorified violence. (JFFNC 2019 Catalogue)

June 1st | Saturday | 20:00 pm | Mousonturm Saal
June 2nd | Sunday | 22:30 pm | Mal Seh’n Kino


Love at least

Love at least by Kosai Sekine – Japan | 2016 – 95 minutes

Suffering from depression and hypersomnia, Yasuko almost never leaves the house, while her boyfriend Tsunaki provides for a living. Things begin to change with the unexpected arrival of Tsunaki’s ex-girlfriend, who is desperate to win him back. Shot on highly aesthetic 16mm film, LOVE AT LEAST is an authentic observation on mental illness in Japan – a topic that continues to be stigmatized.

May 31st | Friday | 16:45 pm | Mousonturm Saal
June 1st | Saturday | 20:15 pm | Mal Seh’n Kino


Lying to Mom

Lying to Mom by Katsumi Nojiri – Japan | 2018 – 133 minutes

The suicide of her son Koichi causes his mother Yuko to fall into a short coma. After she regains consciousness, her family realizes that Yuko lost all memories of her son’s death – and starts pretending that he is still alive. Based on real experiences, Katsumi NOJIRI’s feature debut turns out to be a surprisingly effective and deeply moving combination of both melodramatic and comedic elements.

May 30th | Thursday | 19:30 pm | Mousonturm Saal


Marriage Hunting Beauty

Marriage Hunting Beauty by Akiko Oku – Japan | 2018 – 93 minutes

One day, Takako suddenly thinks “I want to die” and thus decides it is now time for her to get married. Luckily, with online dating available, this is not a big problem, or is it? After her internationally renowned film TREMBLE ALL YOU WANT (NC ’18), director Akiko OKU brings us another highly enjoyable comedy built around a relatable female protagonist that is both independent and vulnerable at the same time.

May 28th | Tuesday |19:30 pm | Mousonturm Saal (including opening ceremony)
May 29th | Wednesday | 20:00 pm | Mal Seh’n Kino



Melancholic by Seiji Tanaka – Japan | 2018 – 113 minutes

After graduating from a prestigious university, Kazuhiko finds himself working as a janitor at the local bathhouse. His job turns out to be much more thrilling than expected when Kazuhiko discovers that his colleague is a hitman and the bathhouse serves as a body disposal. Switching between several genres, like coming of age, crime, or black comedy, Seiji TANAKA delivers an outstanding feature debut.

June 1st | Saturday | 22:15 pm | Naxoshalle Kino


Portraits of the rainbow

Portraits of the rainbow by Ayumi Nakagawa – Japan | 2018 – 79 minutes

This film focuses on the photographer Leslie KEE during the creation of his “Out in Japan” project, in which he portrays various people from the LGBTQ spectrum, hoping to push back against their invisibility within Japanese society. Director NAKAGAWA’s focus on the individual participants of the project leads to some immensely moving moments and shots.

May 30th | Thursday | 22:00 pm | Naxoshalle Kino


Sea by Kensei Takahashi – Japan | 2018 – 80 minutes

As a teenager, Hiroshi witnessed the rape of his classmate Rie by two class bullies. When he meets them again a few years later, he snaps. Those two events provide the basis for a fragmented portrait of a reclusive loner trying to cope with his past. Kensei TAKAHASHI’s debut deals with complex issues of guilt and atonement and condemns a patriarchal society where perpetrators act like victims.

May 29th | Wednesday | 19:45 pm | Naxoshalle Kino


The Call of Zon

The Call of Zon by Takuji Suzuki – Japan | 2018 – 117 mintues

The small town of Yumetoi has been sealed off from the outside world for 20 years by a mysterious phenomenon called “Zon”. But more and more people, like Ippo and his girlfriend Remi, begin to wonder: What lies beyond “Zon”? Takuji SUZUKI’s experimental science fiction film will capture you with its surreal atmosphere, which is intensified by a unique combination of digital and analog images.

May 31st | Friday | 22:15 pm | Naxoshalle Kino



Tourism by Daisuke Miyazaki – Japan, Singapore | 2018 – 78 minutes

One day, Nina wins two travel tickets and she invites her flatmate Su on a trip to Singapore. The two young women explore the city, in which some things are very familiar, while others seem strange. But when Nina gets lost, the banal touristic amusement takes an unexpected turn. Daisuke MIYAZAKI depicts a globalized youth culture, with actresses Nina ENDO and Sumire shining as a charming duo.

May 28th | Tuesday | 22:15 pm | Naxoshalle Kino


We are little Zombies

We Are Little Zombies by Makoto Nagahisa
Japan | 2019 – 120 minutes

Their parents’ ashes rise above four youngsters the day they first meet at a funeral center. Different blows of fate made them orphans but now they have one thing in common – none of them can cry. What sounds like a weepy drama turns out to be an anarchic comedy and visual fever dream. Abundant pop cultural references from games to J-Pop take us into the broken world of the young protagonists.

May 30th | Thursday | 11:30 pm | Mousonturm Saal
June 2nd | Sunday | 20:15 pm | Mal Seh’n Kino


Too see the first part of this article please go HERE.

1 reply »

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.