The Japanese Film Festival in Australia starts early next week. It opens in Sydney on November 24 and closes December 1 in Melbourne. And if Time Out Sydney’s anticipatory blurb, calling this year’s 21 selections ‘the best and brightest of Japanese cinema,’ is right, the 13th annual festival should be pretty successful.
Also creating high hopes is Australian movie magazine Filmink, which mentions that the festival films were all ‘well-received in Japan, hand-picked,’ and offer everything from comedies that will leave us ‘in stitches,’ to true ninja action to drama that will move us to tears.
Keeping all this in mind, I’ve chosen a few in advance that caught my eye:
Detroit Metal City is a film based on a Japanese comic series by the same name. In the film version, rock legend Gene Simmons from KISS makes a special guest appearance. The plot revolves around an unassuming folk musician who leads a double-life as the lead singer of a death metal band. It has allegedly already received offers from US companies wanting to remake it.
Handsome Suit, like DMC, is a comedy that centres around a double-life plot, but this time the subject matter is more light-hearted. The central character is diner owner Takuro, who is an absolute star in the kitchen, but dumpy in appearance. He comes across a magic tuxedo that makes him tall, handsome and irresistible to women.
The Chef of the South Pole is based on a true story by Jun Nishimura, who wrote about his own experiences travelling to the Antarctic in 1997 as part of the 38th Antarctic Exploration. The film is meant to be light, and focuses mainly on the character of Chef Nishimura, providing a sort of fine dining experience in the most unexpected of places.
If you get the chance to catch any of these, enjoy!