Local Cinema

Hello all,

The Tyneside Cinema is having a Japanese film season soon, so this is a quick email with all of the details. Feel free to post on the Facebook page and organise a group trip!

You can book seats here.

The Handsome Suit ハンサム★スーツ (Handsome Suit) (12A) 22/02/2015 at 13:00

Unattractive and portly Takuro is a kind, talented diner chef who is unlucky in love. Believing his looks are the reason for his singledom, he doesn’t hesitate when offered a mystical suit that turns him into a suave and successful male model whenever he wears it. Living a double-life is hard and eventually he must decide whether to keep his fake, if glamorous, life or follow his heart and remain true to himself.

Directing his first feature, Tsutomu Hanabusa uses this lively light-hearted comedy and the perfectly synchronized performances of comedian Muga Tsukaji as Takuro and actor and TV personality Shosuke Tanihara as his handsome alter ego, to explore very real ideas of beauty and vanity through a completely unusual and fantastic story.

My Little Sweet Pea 麦子さんと(Mugiko-san to) (PG) 01/03/2015 at 13:00

One day, anime-obsessed and aspiring voice actor Mugiko’s estranged mother unexpectedly reappears in her and her brother’s lives. When their mother suddenly passes away, Mugiko (or ‘Sweet Pea’) begrudgingly travels to her mother’s hometown. Through her encounters with the locals, she begins to find out about her mother’s surprise local celebrity status and the life of the parent she hardly knew.

Drawing similarities with the films of classic Japanese filmmaker Yasujiro Ozu, My Little Sweet Pea is a bittersweet story about family and loss which transcends cultures. Directed by Keisuke Yoshida (Sankaku, Cafe Isobe), the film stars popular Japanese actor Maki Horikita (The Lady Shogun) and Ryuhei Matsuda (The Great Passage), and also features fun animated sequences by the renowned studio Production I.G. (Ghost in the Shell).

Short Peace ショート・ピース (Short Peace) (15) 04/03/2015 at 18:25

Short Peace is an anthology of four short animated films from Japan’s most talented creators. The brainchild of renowned animation filmmaker Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira), the four dystopian tales represent a crossover between anime and traditional artistic traditions based around the central theme of ‘Japan’.

The animations include Combustible, a depiction of a huge fire in Edo by Katsuhiro Otomo; A Farewell to Weapons, a dystopian action film written by Otomo and directed by mechanical designer Hajime Katoki, highly regarded for his work on the Gundam seriesGambo about a legendary battle between a demon and white bear by Hiroaki Ando; and Possessions, Shuhei Morita’s Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film nominated film.

A Letter To Momo ももへの手紙 (Momo e no Tegami) (PG) 07/03/2015 at 13:00

Momo is an 11-year-old girl who grew up in a big city. After the loss of her father, she moves to the old family house on a remote island where time has stopped: old wooden buildings, holy shrines and no big shops in sight. Momo is not too fond of her new habitat, and her heart is feeling uneasy about an unfinished letter her father left behind with only two words: “Dear Momo.” One day, exploring the attic of her new big house, she finds an antique book and is visited by three bizarre creatures…

A Letter to Momo is the highly anticipated second directorial effort by world-acclaimed anime director Hiroyuki Okiura (Jin-Roh: The Wolf Brigade). Seven years in the making and supported by a top-class team of skilled creators, A Letter to Momo combines state-of-the-art traditional hand drawn animation with heart-warming, emotional storytelling for children and adults alike.

Bolt From The Blue 青天の霹靂 (Seiten no hekireki) (PG) 08/03/2015 at 13:00

Haruo (Yo Oizumi) can’t seem to catch a break. Broke and tending bars for a living after failing to become a successful stage magician, he gets a phone call informing him that his estranged father has passed away. On the way to collect his father’s belongings, Haruo is struck by a lightning bolt and sent back to the past, to a date not long before he is born and bumps into his ‘future’ father and mother.

This heart-warming film, based on director and comedian Gekidan Hitori’s own novel was a huge box office success in Japan, telling a story about family, ambition and the consequences of the choices that we make.

Carmen From Kawachi 河内カルメン (Kawachi Karumen) (18) 11/03/2015 at 18:10

Swapping country life for the big city, young Carmen escapes her miserable life at home to travel to Osaka, becoming a hugely popular nightclub singer with men falling at her feet. This experimental, new wavefilm by iconoclastic director Seijun Suzuki (Tokyo Drifter, Branded to Kill) is the third and final part of his women-centered ‘Flesh Trilogy’ (along with Gate of Flesh and Story of a Prostitute) starring Yumiko Nogawa as the titular Carmen, Suzuki’s favourite collaborator.

Wood Job! (ウッジョブ) ~神去なあなあ日常~ (Wood Job! Kamusari Nana Nichijo) (PG) 15/03/2015 at 13:00

Having flunked his university entrance exams, 18-year-old Yuki Hirano (Shota Sometani) abruptly decides to leave the city behind to take part in a one-year forestry programme, swayed not by a passion for all things lumberjack-related but simply the attractive girl on the programme’s brochure (Masami Nagasawa). Knowing little of what lies ahead, Yuki winds up in rural Kamusari, a small village deep in the mountains. Far, far away from convenience stores or mobile phone reception and facing an entirely new way of life, he begins to find out that the job is a lot tougher than he imagined.

Wood Job! is a coming-of-age story by Shinobu Yaguchi, the director behind the Japanese box office smash hits Waterboys and Swing Girls. The film is based on the novel by popular author Shion Miura, a story which touched on ancient mythology and Japanese legends and has even drawn praise from Studio Ghibli animation filmmaker, Hayao Miyazaki.

Scattered Clouds 乱れ雲 (Midaregumo) (12A) 18/03/2015 at 18:15

Newlywed Yumiko (Yoko Tsukasa) is suddenly widowed when her husband is killed in a traffic accident. The driver responsible is a company worker called Shiro (Yuzo Kayama) who though found innocent is so distraught that he begs for her forgiveness and offers financial aid. Despite her conflicting feelings, Yumiko finds herself in the middle of a dramatic, doomed and unexpected love story when she inadvertently begins falling deeply in love with Shiro.

This classic film, shot in beautiful colour Tohoscope, is tied together by a series of meetings and partings in which the characters are bound by a sense of guilt and duty to each other. With a distinguished career of 89 films to his name, this melodrama was to be Mikio Naruse’s last cinematic offering. An embodiment of his masterful style, this film that tells a story of desire and escape, remains timeless.

Blood And Bones 血と骨 (Chi to hone) (18) 22/03/2015 at 14:50

In 1923, Shun-pei Kim left Cheju, an isolated island in the far South of Korea for Osaka, Japan, dreaming of making his fortune in a new land. Contrary to his hopes, what was waiting for Shun-pei in Japan was a brutal life of discrimination and hard labour. With his remarkable physical strength, cunning and ruthlessness he overcomes the odds stacked against him and opens a kamaboko (steamed fish cake) factory, which before long is a success, bringing him the fortune he coveted for so long.  However, with no limit to his obsession for money, Shun-pei gradually transforms himself into a ruthless loan shark.

Blood and Bones paints an unflinching portrait of a man struggling to make a name for himself in a foreign country and the web of turmoil his wife, mistress, children, relatives and all those around him are drawn into as a result of his choices and brutal, violent nature. Starring legendary Japanese actor ‘Beat’ Takeshi Kitano.

Hope some of those interest you!
Sam Lake
JAC-Dan President