Japan Cuts Film Festival 2008 Brochure, Inside


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All copy written and edited myself, as well as creating design concept. The festival drew nearly 6000 people over the course of 12 days, increasing attendance by 30% from the previous year.

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Japan Cuts Film Festival 2008 Brochure, Inside

  1. 1. short cuts lo n g c u t s Over 60 short films from the forefront of Japan’s emerging independent filmmakers and video artists, plus a special highlight on acclaimed director Naomi Kawase. All films are in Japanese with English subtitles and are digital video. TICKETS Free admission A comprehensive selection of Japan’s newest films, from blockbusters, documentaries and breakthrough films, to the internationally acclaimed and highly controversial. All 18 films Nippon Connection Film Festival on Tour are U.S. or NY premieres. All films are in Japanese Since 2000, Nippon Connection Film Festival has introduced new Japanese films to the European community, fast becoming one of the leading festivals devoted to contemporary Japanese films. JAPAN CUTS presents Nippon with English subtitles unless otherwise noted. Connection Film Festival on Tour, a selection of digital videos from the 2008 festival, compiled by Nippon Connection Film Festival (www.nipponconnection.com). TICKETS $11 general/$7 Japan Society members U.S . PrEmIErE NY PrEmIErE & seniors unless otherwise noted Adrift in Tokyo (Tenten) Dainipponjin (Big man Japan) Thursday, July 3 at 4:20 pm Friday, July 4 at 2:30 pm Films presented between July 3–6 are Co-presented with the New York Asian Film Festival Co-presented with the New York Asian Film Festival When law student Fumiya cannot pay off his debts, collecting When big trouble arises, Daisato steps into a pair of oversized co-presented with the New York Asian Film agent Aiichiro bullies him into taking a leisurely stroll through purple briefs and is electrocuted to become a Dainipponjin (giant Festival, America’s leading festival of popular Tokyo—through the back allies, shrines, parks and restaurants Japanese). The last in a long line of revered Dainipponjin, Daisato where his deepest memories are kept. Director Satoshi Miki weaves attacks horrifying monsters through the cities of Japan. But unlike Asian Cinema. www.subwaycinema.com. together this strange journey of two men into a heart-warming the glory days of past Dainipponjin superheros, Daisato is ridiculed comedy with a phenomenal ensemble cast. Best Supporting Actor and taunted by present-day society as a nuisance. Japan’s most popular comedian Hitoshi Matsumoto stars and directs this whacky for Tomokazu Miura in the 2007 Kinema Junpo Award. kaiju spoof about the perils of so-called heroism and celebrity. 2007, 101 min, 35mm. Directed by Satoshi Miki. With Tomokazu Miura and Joe Odagiri. Official selection, Cannes 2007. 2007, 113 min., 35mm. Directed by Hitoshi Matsumoto. With Hitoshi Matsumoto, Riki Takeuchi and UA. Music by Towa Tei. OPENING FILm—DOUBLE BILL Digista Vol. VI JVC Tokyo Video Festival Planet + 1 Selection: Immoral Films Saturday, July 5 at 1:45 pm & monday, July 7 at 6:45 pm Sunday, July 6 at 6 pm & Saturday, July 12 at 1:15 pm Saturday, July 5 at 6:45 pm & Thursday, July 10 at 8:15 pm Digista (Digital Stadium) is a show on the Japanese television Founded in 1978, the JVC-sponsored Tokyo Video Festival (TVF) Talented young directors in Tokyo contribute their films to the network, NHK, where artists and filmmakers compete for their work is now the largest international video competition in Japan, Immoral Film Festival, presented by the independent distributor to be aired. Over the years, it has grown into a multimedia platform gathering 40,000 works from 90 countries worldwide. The festival Image Rings. The results are some of the most intriguing films dedicated to the discovery of innovative new talents in the field is open to amateurs and professionals for short and feature films, of recent years—provocative, perplexing and always throttling of digital visual media. This is a selection of works compiled from documentaries and fiction. Here is a selection from TVF 2008. the border between fiction and reality. Digista 2007. www.nhk.or.jp/digista. www.jvc-victor.co.jp/english/tvf. Total running time 70 min. The milky Audition Total running time 67 min. Total running time 90 min. 2007, video, 8 min. Directed by Yumi Yoshiyuki. Piece Hansel’s moon Town Pink film director Yumi Yoshiyuki presents an obsessive homage to a 1970s 2007, 10 min. Directed by Yuri Nakadaira. Hansel 2007, 2:27 min. Directed by Yusuke Koyanagi. pop star. *Also screened in Open Art Animation learns the importance of people supporting one another no matter how poor Yueikinshikuiki 2007, 19 min. Directed by Koji Maeda. The day after too their lives may be. Z 2006, 3:35 min. Directed by Shinya Sato. Blue Sky, Night Sky, Starry Sky many drinks and uneasy one-night stands, a group of slackers wander 2007, 13:50 min. Directed by Yu Flock 2007, 3:07 min. Directed by Toru Otsubo. aimlessly through the streets. Katasumata. At the end of a summer vacation, Kouda declares her love Gluebe 2007, 3 min. Directed by Takeshi Usami. Woman of Golden Fish (Pinsaro no onna) to her classmate Iizuka, leaving Riri, Kouda’s best friend, alone. 2007, 23 min. Directed by Shinji Fridges 2007, 6:53 min. Directed by Fujio Tanabe. The Dandelion Sister (Tanpopo no ane) Imaoka. Sato secretly yearns for a girl he knows from the red-light district. 2007, 20 min. Directed by Yusuke Director Imaoka tries to arrange a date—and goes along with the camera. Sakamoto. This clay animation delicately portrays the complex psychology Ikuemi no zanzou 2007, 4:42 min. Directed by Masashi Yokota. between two sisters. *Also screened in Open Art Animation Fujica Single-Date 2007, 29 min. Directed by Kenji Murakami. In 2007, Around 2007, 3:12 min. Directed by Ryu Kato. mutual Link Japan’s Super 8 film production came to a halt, provoking Murakami to U.S . PrEmIErE NY PrEmIErE 2007, 5:15 min. Directed by Xiangyu Meng. An artistic work runningman 2006, 4:30 min. Directed by Tetsuro Kodama. create a meditation on the magical aura of film and all its possible effects in which everyday life scenes are captured in various ways, linking together Fine, Totally Fine (Zenzen daijobu) Always: Sunset on Third Street—2 on one’s love life. With a Confident Smile 2007, 3:38 min. Directed by Ryu Kouben. real and virtual spaces. Thursday, July 3 at 6:30 pm & Saturday, July 5 at 6:30 pm (Always: Zoku-Sanchome no yuhi) The Last Chapter Kujira 2007, 5:43 min. Directed by Reiko Murakami. 2007, 20 min. Directed by Makiko Ishihara. Based on a Saturday, July 5 at 1 pm & Sunday, July 6 at 8:15 pm Co-presented with the New York Asian Film Festival memoir written by the filmmaker’s late father, who had estranged himself Paper Play 2007, 2:40 min. Directed by Sho Yamaguchi. from the rest of his family. By day, Teruo works at his family’s used bookstore—by night, he Co-presented with the New York Asian Film Festival Selene Attraction 2007, 5:30 min. Directed by Kazuhiko Kobayashi. Why Didn’t the Hero Appear in The Iraq War? works on creating the world’s scariest haunted house. When pretty 2007, 20 min. Set in in nostalgic 1959 Tokyo, Always (2006) won 13 of Japan’s 14 A maze 2007, 17:59 min. Directed by Kei Takahashi. Directed by Tsuyoshi Ishii. A documentary-like drama about the everyday life but clumsy Akari begins working at the shop, both Teruo and his Academy Awards and the New York Asian Film Festival Audience of Chocker, a villain in an SFX live-action film. friend vow to capture her heart. Silly, jealous rivalry ensues in this Award. The same cast of beloved characters returns to the visually NY P r E m I E r E— O P E NI NG F I L m hilarious, offbeat comedy. Winner of the Grand Prize at the Nippon lavish and magical world of Third Street in Always—2. Opening with The mourning Forest (mogari no mori) Connection Film Festival. a rare cameo by Godzilla, the story continues as struggling writer Wednesday, July 2 at 6:30 pm & monday, July 7 at 6:30 pm 2007, 110 min., 35 mm. Directed by Yosuke Fujita. With Yoshiyoshi Arakawa, Chagawa vows to win a prestigious book award after he learns that Yoshino Kimura and Yoshinori Okada. M E E t c u t s ! Q & A with director Naomi Kawase following Junnosuke, the boy whom he supports, might be taken away from him the July 2 screening. by his sinister biological father. The entire neighborhood comes together Unable to forget the death of her young son, Machiko moves into to support Chagawa as he races to complete his novel. Picture of the the backroads of Nara to work at a home for the elderly, where she Year, and winner, Best Actor Hidetaka Yoshioka, 31st Japan Academy Prize. meets Shigeki, who has been suffering from the loss of his wife for 2007, 146 min., 35mm. Directed by Takashi Yamazaki. With Hidetaka Yoshioka, many years. One day, they wander deep through the forest together, Shinichi Tsutsumi and Koyuki. hoping to locate her grave. When they lose their way, the two em- bark upon an unexpected journey through devastating memories and grief, fueled by the forceful energy of the midsummer moun- Vortex and Others—5 Short Works by Yoshihiro Ito 893239 (Yakuza Short Films) tains. Winner of the Grand Prix Cannes 2007. Tuesday, July 8 at 6:45 pm & Saturday, July 12 at 7:30 pm Tuesday, July 8 at 8:45 pm & Sunday, July 13 at 5:15 pm 2007, 97 min., 35mm. Directed by Naomi Kawase. With Shigeki Uda and Yoshihiro Ito is one of the most astonishing talents to emerge from The short film compilation 893239 is a collection of films with Machiko Ono. within the Japanese independent scene in recent years. His film cycle the overall theme of yakuza. All episodes are shot by different revolves around the topic of love, and creates a magical space where directors and crews who had to work within a budget limit of The mourning Forest is preceded the subtle meets the bizarre meets the profound. $1,000 (¥100.000) per film. The result offers comedy, drama, by a short documentary music video and mockumentary. Here is a selection of 8 episodes. Total running time 98 min. Tarachime Wife’s Knife (Sanma no hi) 2006, 10 min. A woman has bought cheap Total running time 86 min. Kawase documents the birth and running Flamenco (Hashiru flamenco) fish and her husband gradually lapses into a frantic panic. But who is really Sumida episode, 10:25 min., upbringing of her own son, as the crazy here? Directed by Koji Masui. great aunt who raised her, now Imaginary Lines 2001, 25 min. On New Year’s Eve 2000, a woman Beyond the Forest of the man (Yakuza no mori) Nakano episode, 92, suffers from senile dementia wanders through Tokyo. Meeting two men who shouldn’t exist, the borders 4:36 min. Directed by Hijiri Taketomi. of memory, past and present start to blur. and slowly approaches death. Yakuza’s Delivery (Yakuza-no takuhaibin) Edogawa episode, 9:38 min. Umeshinju 2006, 39 min., digital video. Directed by 2003, 34 min. Two people, who cannot use their arms, meet. Directed by Noriaki Sugihara. Naomi Kawase. What sounds absurd develops into the most poetic meeting. Open Art Animation revenge (Fukushu) Adachi episode, 12:47 min. Directed by Non-Intervention Game (Fukansho gemu) 2008, 10 min. A tourist walks Saturday, July 5 at 8:15 pm & Thursday, July 10 at 6:45 pm Masayuki Kuramoto. through the city and sees strange things: but no matter what happens, the NY PrEmIErE NY PrEmIErE Swear on the Finger (Yubikiri) Meguro episode, 11:36 min. Directed Open Art (www.open-art.tv) is more than a website, it is an archive, residents ignore it at any cost. Eventually, the man cannot keep his nose out Naomi Kawase (director) Accuracy of Death (Shinigami no seido) Yasukuni by Kazunori Egusa. a distribution matrix and a tireless promoter of short films. Founded of their business. Born in 1969 in Nara, critically acclaimed director Naomi Kawase is Tradition of Sumida (Sumida-ku no jiba sangyo) Thursday, July 3 at 8:45 pm & Friday, July 4 at 12:15 pm Saturday, July 5 at 4 pm & Thursday, July 10 at 6:30 pm Sumida episode, Vortex (Kachu no hito) in 1999, it has collected over 1,000 films. Here is a selection of the 2005, 19 min. Very inappropriately, an ex-girlfriend the winner of numerous international film awards. A graduate of the 10:58 min. Directed by Yoshiaki Tago. best in recent years’ animated films. appears in a man’s apartment, apparently determined to settle things. She Co-presented with the New York Asian Film Festival Co-presented with the New York Asian Film Festival Osaka School of Photography (now called the School of Visual Arts), Jin, Hiroki, and me, the Sister (Jin to hiroki to imoto no atashi) succeeds, even if not as planned. Total running time 72 min. she is known for chronicling her own personal growth and pain through The charming, handsome Grim Reaper (played by heart throb Thousands of people pour into Yasukuni Shrine each year on August Ota episode, 10:57 min. Directed by Kazutaka. themes of family, abandonment, and the cycles of life and death. She The Fisherman 2002, 14 min. Directed by Saku Sakamaoto. Takeshi Kaneshiro) visits this world with his dog to observe his 15, where the war dead, including war criminals, are enshrined. In Too Nervous Finger (Yubi-kitchou) became the youngest winner of the Camera D’Or at the Cannes Film Kita episode, 8:50 min. Directed Slide 002 2005, 4 min. Directed by Takahiro Hirata. assigned targets for seven days before deciding their fates. When this documentary shot over the course of 10 years, director Li Ying Festival in 1997 with her feature debut film, Suzaku (1996), and Shara- by Hisana Kanamori. assigned to depressed and lonely Kazue, he developes a special tirelessly chronicles those who visit the Shrine from various back- sojyu (2003) was in competition at Cannes 2003. Her fourth feature Kleenex-man, The Terrorist 2005, 1:56 min. Directed by Shuhei Shibue. film, The Mourning Forest, won the Grand Prix Cannes 2007. Her new relationship with her that lasts for longer than he ever expected. grounds and perspectives—patriotic veterans, extreme nationalists Piece 2006, 2:27 min. Directed by Yusuke Koyanagi. feature film Nanayomachi will be released in Japan this year. Kaneshiro, star of Chungking Express and House of Flying Daggers and angry protestors from China and Korea. Ying, born in China *Also screened in Digista Vol. VI returns to Japanese cinema after a five-year absence. Based on and based in Japan, dares to tackle this controversial subject as he Around 2007, 3:12 min., Directed by Ryu Kato. Japan’s bestselling novel by Kotaro Isaka. interviews a man who made holy Yasukuni swords during WW II. mr. Cloud and mr. rain 2007, 6:34 min. Directed by Tomoyoshi Joko. * Follow the roadmapOrigin of Naomi Kawase: Part 1 & 2 The film juxtaposes the man’s hesitancy to speak about Yasukuni 2008, 113 min., 35mm. Directed by Masaya Kakei. With Takeshi Kaneshiro, to Kawase’s contemplative The Kinrakuen 2007, Video, 6:30 min. Directed by Daisuke Hagiwara. Manami Konishi and Sumiko Fuji. with the chaos and rage that mount at the Shrine every year. Many filmmaking in The The Dandelion Sister 2007, 20:30 min. Directed by Yosuke Sakamoto. theaters in Japan canceled the initial engagements of this film, caus- in SHORT CUTS, on page 5. *Also screened in JVC Tokyo Video Festival ing a huge controversy on self-censorship through fear of right-wing A Story Constructed of 17 Pieces of Space and 1 maggot interventions. Winner of the Hong Kong Film Festival. 2007, 13:32 min. Directed by Isamu Hirabayashi. 2008, 123 min., digital video. Directed by Li Ying. 4 1
  2. 2. lo n g c u t s c o n t I n u E d. . . NY P r E m I E r E MEEt cuts! Sakuran * Get with the scandalscreening. Light Party * at the red Saturday, July 12 at 8:30 pm & Sunday, July 13 at 12:45 pm Provocative director Koji Wakamatsu joins the festival following the July 12 Sold into the red light district as a young girl during the Edo period, foul-mouthed, via high-definition private network from Japan for a spunky Kiyoha climbs the ladder to become the oiran (head courtesan) after failing to discussion and Q&A following the July 6 screening. Special ticket price: $15/$12 Japan Society members escape from her brothel. In her directorial debut, young, bestselling art photographer * Pre-screening talk with Masayuki Kakegawa on Mika Ninagawa brings this popular Japanese manga to the screen with lavish and the biographical history of the events in the film vibrant period costumes and gorgeous candy-colored sets. Official Selection, Berlin Film Festival 2007. and writing United red Army on July 6 at 3 pm 2007, 111 min., 35mm. Directed by Mika Ninagawa. With Anna Tsuchiya, and July 8 at 6:30 pm. Masanobu Ando and Miho Kanno. U.S . P r E m I E r E Koji Wakamatsu (director) United red Army t u r t l E b ay c u t s Born in 1936 in Miyagi, Koji Wakamatsu entered filmmaking as a security (Jitsuroku rengosekigun-asama sanso e no michi) guard on location and made his feature directorial debut in 1963 with the Sunday, July 6 at 4 pm & Tuesday, July 8 at 7:30 pm pink film (sex film) Sweet Trap. His sex films in the 1960s and 70s carried Co-presented with the New York Asian Film Festival strong political views, and were widely supported, especially among A complimentary screening for the community students. With a 40-year career and 100 films to his credit, Wakamatsu Wakamatsu pushes the boundaries of filmmaking to recapture of Turtle Bay and beyond! is praised in international film festivals such as Berlin, Vienna and Jeonju, the historical events of the United Red Army (URA) that led up yet is unable to enter the U.S. due to the close affiliation he had with to what is now infamously known as the “Asama Mountain Lodge Japanese left wing militants. NY PrEmIErE Incident” of 1972. This gut-wrenching docudrama portrays the A Gentle Breeze in the Village (Tennen kokekko) political unrest of 1960s Japan, when student uprisings erupted Sunday, July 13 at 3 pm masayuki Kakegawa (screenwriter) throughout the country, eventually dovetailing into extreme violence. With most of the members of the defiant left arrested, Based on a popular manga, A Gentle Breeze is a tender coming-of- Born in 1951 in Yokohama, Masayuki Kakegawa began to work as a staff the remaining factions unite to form the URA and hide out in the writer for the weekly magazine Shukan Hoseki in 1981. He has traveled to age love story set deep in Japan’s countryside by director Nobuhiro more than 50 countries, covering stories on the Yugoslavian civil war, the mountains for guerilla training. When the URA initiate a process Yamashita (Linda Linda Linda). When eighth grade cool guy Hiromi collapse of the Soviet Union, Palestine, the Republic of Zaire (present Congo) they call “self-criticism,” what had started out ideologically esca- transfers from Tokyo to a small elementary/middle school with only and more. After becoming a freelance journalist,he wrote for magazines lates into torture and the execution of fellow comrades. Winner six kids enrolled, wholesome and honest Soyo becomes enthralled such as Focus, Weekly Asahi and Forbes Japan. He also edited Wakamatsu’s of Netpac, C.I.C.A.E. Awards, Berlin Film Festival 2008. autobiography Jiko-nashi, while working closely with Wakamatsu on United by his sophisticated world. 2007 Kinema Junpo Best Ten. Red Army as a screenwriter. He is a member of the Japan P.E.N. Club. 2008, 190 min., 35mm. Directed by Koji Wakamatsu. With Go Jibiki, Aie 2007, 121 minutes, 35mm. Directed by Nobuhiro Yamashita. With Kaho and Namiki and Maki Sakai. Music by Jim O’Rourke. Masaki Okada InugaMI x 2: N Y PrEmIErE a t r I b u t E to Ko n I c h I K awa Sukiyaki Western Django Saturday, July 5 at 9 pm To commemorate the death of Kon Ichikawa in February at the age of Co-presented with the New York Asian Film Festival 92, JAPAN CUTS proudly presents the first-ever subtitled screening of Takashi Miike, director of Ichii the Killer and Audition, is back again Ichikawa’s The Inugami Family from 1976, a monumental mystery-thriller with this homage to the Spaghetti Western. When a mysterious classic that has influenced numerous film directors in Japan. This tribute gunman rides into Nebada (Nevada), he finds the peaceful town also includes his own remake of the film, Murder of the Inugami Clan from U.S . P r E m I E r E— CLOS I N G FI Lm U.S. P r E m I E r E filled with bloody corpses left behind from the Genji and Heike, Kisaragi Filmful Life (Ichikawa Kon monogatari) 2006, the final film in his prolific career. warring clans in search of a hidden treasure. Highly sought after Wednesday, July 9 at 8:45 pm & Sunday, July 13 at 5:30 pm Friday, July 11 at 6:30 pm for his splendid quick draw, the gunman vacillates between the INT ErNAT IONAL PrEmIErE When five members of pop star Miki Kisaragi’s online fan club meet A master of love stories, director Shunji Iwai (All About Lili Chou two clans while concealing his true identity. Guest-starring Quentin The Inugami Family murder of the Inugami Clan for the first time to honor the one-year anniversary of her suicide, Chou) recounts Kon Ichikawa’s prolific career (Fires on the Plain, The Tarantino, this outrageous English-language “Eastern Western” is Friday, July 11 at 8:30 pm Saturday, July 12 at 5:45 pm what starts out as a cheerful party turns into a terrifying who-done- Inugami Family and The Burmese Harp), particularly focusing on his jam packed with samurai sword-swinging, gun-slinging and Shake- 1976, 146 min., 35mm. With live English 2006, 135 min., 35mm. With Koji Ishizaka, it, as each man is accused of the gruesome death of their darling. As close romantic and creative partnership with his wife, writer Natto speare-quoting cowboys. In Competition, Venice Film Festival 2007. subtitle projections. With Koji Ishizaka, Nanako Matsushima, Sumiko Fuji and clues to each man’s relationship to her are slowly revealed, Kisaragi Wada. Iwai’s personal admiration for the director shines throughout 2007, 98 min., 35mm. Directed by Takashi Miike. With Hideaki Ito, Yusuke Iseya Mieko Takamine and Yoko Shimada. Kyoko Fukada. cleverly keeps everyone guessing until the very end. Picture of the the documentary as he commemorates the making of Ichikawa’s and Yoshino Kimura. In English. Murder of the Inugami Clan, which turned out to be Ichikawa’s final Year at the 31st Japan Academy Prize. When the wealthy Inugami patriarch dies leaving behind a huge estate, * YEE-HAW! Put on those cowboy bootsscreening. film, as he passed away in February 2008. 2007, 108 min., 35mm. Directed by Yuichi Sato. With live English subtitle projection. and join the family lawyer hires detective Kindaichi as a series of mysterious With Shun Oguri, Yusuke Santamaria, Keisuke Koide, Teruyuki Kagawa and 2006, 83 min., digital video. Directed by Shunji Iwai. murders occur—from attempted drownings and poisonings to beheadings. the Sukiyaki Western Party after the Muga Tsukaji. * A twisted web of deceit, adultery and greed is revealed as the family In conjunction with Inugami x 2: A Tribute to Kon Ichikawa, see page 3. Special ticket price: $15/$12 Japan Society members. gathers for the reading of the will, and the race for the inheritance turns even deadlier. Based on the bestselling novel by Seishi Yokomizo, which has been made into three films and five TV series. * Don’t miss FilmfulIwai onthe documentary on Ichikawa Life, by director Shunji July 11, see page 2. N Y PrEmIErE I N TE r N ATI O N AL P r E m I E r E U.S. P r E m I E r E Sad Vacation Gummi, Chocolate, Pine Near Equal Kusama Yayoi: I Adore myself (Near equal Kusama Yayoi—watashi daisuki) Sunday, July 6 at 1:15 pm Thursday, July 10 at 9 pm & Saturday, July 12 at 3:15 pm Saturday, July 12 at 12:45 pm Unemployed and directionless, Kenzo returns to his hometown and Co-presented with the New York Asian Film Festival M E E t c u t s ! Q & A with director Takako matsumoto. reunites with his childhood friends after many years. Flashing back Kenji, played by superstar Tadanobu Asano, swears revenge when to his 1980s high school years—love, sexual fantasies/frustration The highly anticipated documentary Near Equal Kusama Yayoi: I Adore he unexpectedly finds his mother, who had abandoned him as a and guitar rock—this eccentric story recounts the charm of teenage Myself films wildly charismatic artist Yayoi Kusama (born in 1929) in child, now living with a new husband and son. In this sequel to awkwardness and failed adult ambitions. Based on the bestselling recent years as she passionately works on a large series of 50 draw- Helpless (1996) and Eureka (2000, winner at Cannes), director novel by Indie rock star Kenji Otsuki, this is the third feature film by ings while director Matsumoto attends her gallery opening in New Aoyama completes this trilogy with the powerful story of a man Sandorovich, aka Kera, one of the most sought-after theater writer/ York City, where she lived from 1957–73. The film reveals Kusama’s who tries to stand against his fate and rejects the blood ties that directors in Japan today. eccentricities, self-obsession and intense dedication to her art. keep coming back to haunt him. Official Selection, Venice Film 2007, 127 min., digital video. Directed by Keralino Sandorovich. With Takuya Ishida, 2008, 108 min., digital video. Directed by Takako Matsumoto. Festival 2007. Mei Kurokawa and Nao Omori. 2007, 136 min., 35mm. Directed by Shinji Aoyama. With Tadanobu Asano, Takako matsumoto (director) Eri Ishida and Yu Aoi. Born in Kanagawa, Matsumoto has produced numerous documentary programs for television as a freelance director. Her film project at Tokai Uni- versity Cinema Study Group, Chako’s Apa-toru Story, was selected at the 6th Pia Film Festival. Matsumoto began developing a documentary on Kusama after meeting the artist in 1996. In 1999, she worked on the NHK TV special, Artist Kusama Yayoi’s Fantasy World of Darkness of the Heart, which led her to start filming Kusama privately. Near Equal Kusama Yayoi: I Adore Myself is Matsumoto’s theatrical feature debut. 2 3 The mourning Forest