Cinema of Japan

The Journalist, Bento Harassment, Sea of Revival, Hot Gimmick: Girl Meets Boy, Banzai! Koko wa ai no michi, Let’s go! Anpanman: Sparkle! Princess Vanilla of the Land of Ice Cream, Gekijouban Patalliro!, Anata ga koko ni iro dake de munekata Sanshimai Monogatari, Yee-chan no shiroi tsue, Chontycha – at the end of summer, Delivery, Nashi-kun Tamako to kiba no yukue, Retro Love, Frame Arms Girl: Kyakkyau Fufu na Wonderland, Cencoroll Connect Japanese Film Trailers

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Happy weekend, everyone!

I hope you are all well!

Welcome to another weekend of badly translated trailers. I’m at the end of another 12-day work period so this weekend is going to be savoured. My spare time has been spent watching films and writing about them while listening to podcasts.

I started this week on a high with a post about the Kanazawa Film Festival and I ended it with the last of my Osaka Asian Film Festival coverage for this year – a review for Demolition Girl and an interview with that film’s director Genta Matsugami. I may do a round-up post and a comment on the awards ceremony but the New York Asian Film Festival has started and I have material to release for that, specifically reviews for Samurai Marathon and The Fable which have already been published. That written, I have a couple of posts about different festivals to release next week… Also, I got some Japanese beer from a friend in work so that helped me survive an evening of the heatwave that has struck Britain…

What is released this weekend?

The Journalist The Journalist Film Poster

新聞記者  「Shimbun Kisha」

Release Date: June 28th, 2019

Duration: 113 mins.

Director: Michihito Fujii

Writer: Akihiko Takaishi (Screenplay), Kosuke Kawamura, Isoko Mochizuki (Original Non-fiction Book)

Starring: Shim Eun-Kyung, Tori Matsuzaka, Tsubasa Honda, Amane Okayama, Tomohiro Kaku, Seiya Osada, Hina Miyano,

Website IMDB

This seems to be based on a real-life scandal involving Japan’s current Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, and his right-wing government. Suicide involving public officials and government-funded schools. Do the characters have what it takes to risk their careers for the truth? It plays at Japan Cuts next month.

Synopsis from Japan Cuts because it’s great: Yoshioka (Eun-kyung Shim) is a Tokyo reporter with truth-seeking zeal haunted by her father’s destroyed journalism career and subsequent suicide. Meanwhile, Sugihara (Tori Matsuzaka) is a bureaucrat on a glide path to promotion who comes upon a shady government-funded school that could point to a historic cover-up. Together, they must decide what to do when doing the right thing feels like self-sabotage. Based on journalist Isoko Mochizuki’s book, Michihito Fujii’s thriller recalls All the President’s Men in its depiction of journalism’s civic duty, replete with bustling newsrooms, late night leak intercepts and whirring printing presses.

Bento Harassment Bento Harassment Film Poster

今日も嫌がらせ弁当  Kyo mo Iyagarase Bento

Release Date: June 28th, 2019

Duration: 106 mins.

Director: Renpei Tsukamoto

Writer: Renpei Tsukamoto (Screenplay), Ttkk (Kaori) (Original Story)

Starring: Ryoko Shinohara, Kyoko Yoshine, Rena Matsui, Kanta Sato, Ryuta Sato,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Kaori (Ryoko Shinohara) is a single mother raising her daughter Futaba (Kyoko Yoshine) alone. Futaba has entered her rebellious phase and ignores her mother so Kaori decides the best way to communicate with her daughter is by creating messages in the bento meals Futaba takes to high school.

Sea of Revival Sea of Revival Film Poster

凪待ち  Nagi Machi

Release Date: June 28th, 2019

Duration: 124 mins.

Director: Kazuya Shiraishi

Writer: Masato Kato (Screenplay), Katsuhisa Minami (Original Story)

Starring: Shingo Katori, Yuri Tsunematsu, Naomi Nishida, Ken Yoshizawa, Takuma Otoo, Lily Franky,

Website

From the director of The Blood of Wolves, Twisted Justice and The Devil’s Path comes this bleak-looking thriller.

Synopsis: A man named Ikuo (Shingo Katori) spends his days drinking and gambling and when his debts become too much he is forced to move with his partner Minami (Yuri Tsunematsu) and her daughter to her home–town of Ishinomaki in Miyagi Prefecture. Things get back on track after Minami opens up a beauty salon and he becomes a fisherman and it seems like happiness is within reach for the three but things begin to happen as her ex-husband comes back on the scene and Ikuo gets mixed up with more bad characters and then Minami dies…

Cencoroll Connect Cencoroll Connect Film Poster

センコロール コネクト  「Senkoro-ru Konekuto」

Duration: 75 mins.

Release Date: June 29th, 2019

Director: Atsuya Uki

Writer: Atsuya Uki (Screenplay),

Starring: Kana Hanazawa (Yuki), Hiro Shimono (Tetsu), Kenji Akabane (Gotoda), Natsumi Takamori (Kaname), Ryohei Kimura (Shuu), Satomi Moriya (Kei),

Animation Production: Think Corporation

Website ANN MAL

This will be screened at the Fantasia Festival in Canada soon!

Synopsis: High school boy Tetsu has a secret – a pale shapeless creature for a pet which he calls Cenco. What it is and where it’s from is a mystery, one that doesn’t bother Tetsu so much but has his classmate Yuki interested. Tetsu isn’t the only one with a creature as Shu, another classmate, has two. Soon, a giant creature similar to theirs appears from an interdimensional portal over their town one evening. With the army activated, a kaiju battle ensues and it will sweep the kids along with it…

Hot Gimmick: Girl Meets Boy Hot Gimmick Girl Meets Boy Film Poster

ホットギミック ガールミーツボーイ  Hotto Gimikku: Ga-ru Mi-tsu Bo-i

Release Date: June 28th, 2019

Duration: 119 mins.

Director: Yuki Yamato

Writer: Yuki Yamato (Screenplay), Miki Aihara (Original Manga)

Starring: Miona Hori, Hiroya Shimizu, Mizuki Itagaki, Shotaro Mamiya, Hiyori Sakurada, Riho Yoshioka, Kaisei Kamimura,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Hatsumi Narita (Miona Hori) is an ordinary high school student who, due to a moment of bad judgement, ends up being in an abusive relationship with Ryoki Tachibana (Hiroya Shimizu) who lives in the same apartment building as her. She really likes her childhood friend Azusa Odagiri (Mizuki Itagaki) and when moves back to into the area, Azusa makes moves on Hatsumi. He is super-handsome and a popular model and seems to care about her but he has secret motives…

Banzai! Koko wa ai no michi Banzai! Koko wa ai no michi Film Poster

万歳!ここは愛の道  「Banzai! Koko wa ai no michi」

Release Date: June 28th, 2019

Duration: 103 mins.

Director: Tatsuya Ishii

Writer: N/A

Starring: Mei Fukuda, Hiroto Oshita, Ryouka Neya, Keitoku Itou,

Synopsis: Tatsuya Ishii won the JFF Special Award at the Pia Film Festival Award 2018 for Subarashiki Sekai. Here, he chases the concept of true love through the self-documentary format as he revisits time spent with an old lover. They had been dating for two years and she was in a mental ward of a hospital after the breakdown of the relationship. Ishii recorded their relationship while together until it got too bad. Then, one day, after a call from her, he visited her house with a camera in hand and talked to her to find out she had lost two years of her memory.

The next three films were produced by the Yoshimoto Comedy agency who worked in different regions across in Japan. These films get screened at the Okinawa Film Festival, I believe.

Anata ga koko ni iro dake de munekata Sanshimai Monogatari

あなたがここにいるだけで むなかた三姉妹物語  「Anata ga koko ni iro dake de munekata Sanshimai Monogatari」

Production Date: 2017

Duration: 47 mins.

Director: Takashi Urai

Writer: N/A

Starring: Nana Yamada, Tet Wada, Yumiko Nakamura, Yuki Yamamoto, Kazumi Kotobuki, Shuichiro Idemitsu, Ken Tanaka,

Website

Synopsis: This drama was produced in 2017 in commemoration of Okinoshima, in Munakata City, Fukuoka Prefecture, being registered as a World Cultural Heritage Site. Known as “The island where the gods live” it is also the place where the youngest of three sisters works at a primary school. She explores the island and meets various people to understand the place.

The film stars Nana Yamada who was in “NMB 48”.

A Fang and a Pear’s Journey

梨君たまこと牙のゆくえ  「Nashi-kun Tamako to kiba no yukue」

Production Date: 2018

Duration: 30 mins.

Director: Nao Yoshigai

Writer: Nao Yoshigai, Tomoyuki Takahashi (Screenplay)

Starring: Yu Goto, Maiki Kimura, Waraimeshi Tetsuo, Razor Ramon RG, Rieka Ayumi, Apuri Kato,

Website

Synopsis: A young woman named Ayano who lives alone in a city finds an unexpected visitor in the shape of a pear. She names it “Tamako”. Meanwhile, in the countryside, a pear farmer named Satoko notices that one of the pears is missing and it has been replaced by a bloody fang.

Retro Love

レトロの愛情  「Retoro no Aijou」

Production Date: 2013

Duration: 36 mins.

Director: Daichi Oka

Writer: N/A

Starring: Hiroyuki Baba, Mika Hijii, Ryouji Akiyama, Hiroshi Yamamoto, Yoshiyuki Ikeda, Naoki Yamada,

Website

Synopsis: Moji in Kitakyushu City, Fukuoka Prefecture, is a trading city that draws a photographer who spent some time there years ago before Mojiko Retro, a tourist attraction with many historic buildings, became a big draw for outsiders. He isn’t the only on interested in the old city because, as he’s shown around by a local, he meets a woman haunted by the place.

Yee-chan no shiroi tsue Yee-chan no shiroi tsue Film Poster

イーちゃんの白い杖  「I-chan no shiroi tsue」

Release Date: June 28th, 2019

Duration: 108 mins.

Director: Mariko Hashimoto

Writer: N/A

Starring: N/A

Website

Synopsis: TV Shizuoka made a documentary series that covered 20 years of a family that includes a totally blind older sister and a seriously disabled brother. She has been able to go to a school for the blind but has experienced loneliness and bullying and even thought about suicide. He is not able to do much in terms of basic movement due to his severe disabilities and has been in and out of hospital many times. Despite the hardships they have suffered they keep living because they bring out the best in each other.

Chontycha – at the end of summer Chontycha – at the end of summer Film Poster

チョンティチャ  「Chonticha」

Release Date: June 29th, 2019

Duration: 40 mins.

Director: Mei Fukuda

Writer: Mei Fukuda (Screenplay)

Starring: Rin Nagatsuki, Tomohito Akiba, Noriko Arai, Tatsuki Yufu, Yuuichi Nomoto, Kazunori Akase, Kenta Ito,

Website

Synopsis: Chonthicha is the daughter of a Burmese mother and a Thai father and was raised in Japan. Following her parent’s divorce, she lives with her mother and her new partner, Takahashi. She has been trying to lead a quiet life but things get complicated when she reaches her 16th birthday…

Delivery Delivery Film Poster

デリバリー  「Deribari-」

Release Date: June 29th, 2019

Duration: 94 mins.

Director: Atsushi Muroga

Writer: Atsushi Muroga (Screenplay)

Starring: Tsukushi Suzuki, Shin Nagahama, Tomu Fujita, Tokio Kanbayashi, Hironobu Yukinaga, Mika Kitajima, Shoko Nakahara,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Atsushi Muroga likes directing action films. I first became aware of him in high school with his title Junk and, since then Score and some of the Gun Crazy franchise. Here, he directs a film about the misadventures of the staff who work at a pizza shop called “Cats & Dogs”. The home delivery team are a four-man operation, a super-chef and the pretty female manager. Of course, some of the orders and clients they get are outrageous…

Let’s go! Anpanman: Sparkle! Princess Vanilla of the Land of Ice Cream Let's go! Anpanman Sparkle! Princess Vanilla of the Land of Ice Cream Film Poster

それいけ! アンパンマン きらめけ! アイスの国のバニラ姫  Soreike! Anpanman Kirameke! Ice no Kuni no Vanilla-hime

Duration: 62 mins.

Release Date: June 28th, 2019

Director: Hiroyuki Yano

Writer: Shoji Yonemura (Screenplay), Takashi Yanase (Original Creator),

Starring: Keiko Toda (Anpanman), Ryuusei Nakao (Baikinman), Nana Eikura (Princess Vanilla), Miyazon (Minister Gelato), Arapon (Germ Ice Cream Robot), Michiyo Yanagisawa (Currypanman), Mika Kanai (Melonpanna),

Animation Production: TMS Entertainment

Website ANN MAL

Synopsis: Princess Vanilla lives in a land of ice cream but is unable to create ice cream herself. Fed up with her lack of ability, she flees her palace, and soon meets Anpanman and Kokin-chan. While travelling with them, she learns the reason why she can’t create ice cream. Meanwhile, Baikinman attacks the land of ice cream while Princess Vanilla is missing.

Gekijouban Patalliro! Gekijouban Patalliro! Film Poster

劇場版パタリロ!  「Gekijouban Patariro!」

Release Date: June 28th, 2019

Duration: 103 mins.

Director: Kensaku Kobayashi

Writer: Tetsuhiro Ikeda (Screenplay), Mineo Maya (Original Creator)

Starring: Ryo Kato, Tsunenori Aoki, Hiroki Sana, Kei Hosogai, Sonde Kanai, Shun Ishida,

Website

Synopsis: A movie adaptation of the “Patalliro!” stage-play. It is based on a manga that has been serialised for over 40 years since it began in 1978. The cast of the 2016 musical version appear here. The story concerns Crown Prince Patalliro de Mariner VIII who, with his cadre of beautiful boys, travels around through space, the British Empire and Saitama Prefecture…

Frame Arms Girl: Kyakkyau Fufu na Wonderland Frame Arms Girl Kyakkyau Fufu na Wonderland Film Poster

フレームアームズ・ガール きゃっきゃうふふなワンダーランド  「Frame Arms Girl: Kyakkyau Fufu na Wonderland」

Duration: 82 mins.

Release Date: June 29th, 2019

Director: Keiichiro Kawaguchi

Writer: Deko Akao (Series Composition), Kotobukiya (Original Creator),

Starring: Yoko Hikasa (Ao Gennai), Narumi Kaho (Gorai), Erii Yamazaki (Materia Shimai), Kanomi Izawa (Bukiko Kotobuki), Yuu Ayase (Stylet),

Animation Production: Studio A-Cat, ZEXCS

Website ANN MAL

Synopsis: The anime’s story takes place in a world where Frame Arms Girls exist. These are small robots capable of independent movement and lead character Ao has recently acquired Gourai, a newly-developed prototype equipped with an an AI that gives her a personality. Ao helps Gourai acquire new knowledge and feelings as well as battle data each and every day.

Ira Ligar
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