The popular Japanese Film Festival returns to the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) and Hoyts Melbourne Central from Tuesday, 29th November with another remarkable film festival program. Running over seven days some thirty feature films will screen, including a series of special events.
Celebrating fifteen years, this 2011 film program is composed of the very best in contemporary Japanese cinema, as well as key 'Heritage' feature films.
Highlights of the film festival program include;
The Opening Film A Ghost of a Chance, which is also known as Once in a Blue Moon. This popular comedy is the latest feature film from celebrated director Koki Mitani. The Japanese Film Festival is also screening a special Koki Mitani 'Mini Retrospective' featuring The Magic Hour and Suite Dreams.
The film festival favourite Abacus and Sword is also screening. This samurai drama is directed by Yoshimitsu Morita and stars Masato Sakai, Yukie Nakama and Masatoshi Nakamura.
Arrietty, the latest Studio Ghibli release, is also part of the festival line up. This popular anime is directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi and was produced and written by Hayao Miyazaki.
The action flicks Gantz and the sequel Gantz: Perfect Answer are also screening at the festival. Directed by Shinsuke Sato, the feature films are based on the popular manga written by Hiroya Oku.
Ninja Kids!!! is also part of the line up; this is the latest feature film from Takashi Miike. (It is also part of the Fantastic Asia Film Festival line up). This screening is sure to be a popular event during the festival.
Another popular film screening will be the box office smash hit Space Battleship Yamato, an action adventure based on the 1974 television anime series of the same name.
In addition to contemporary Japanese cinema, there will be free screenings of 'Heritage' titles; these include the following classics directed by Kenji Misumi - Destiny's Son (1962) , Ken (1964) and Yotsuya Ghost Story (1959).
With a mix of box-office smash hits, award winning features, family films and timeless classics, this year's Japanese Film Festival is quite impressive, there really is a lot to look forward to. You can browse the exciting film festival program at the Japanese Film Festival website located here.
Special guests attending the Melbourne festivities include cinematographer Hirotaka Matsune and director Tsuyoshi Inoue, who will be presenting two very special films; Yamakoshi: The Recovery of a Tiny Japanese Village and The Town's Children.
You can view the complete schedule of events here. Please note screenings are taking place at ACMI and Hoyts Melbourne Central and you will need to purchase your ticket at the respective venue.
Tickets are onsale from Tuesday 1st November and prices are as follows;
$11 Japan Foundation Members
$60 5-Film Pass