By Travis Johnson

The Japanese Film Festival 2017 line-up has been announced: a fantastic roster of old and new films that will tour Canberra, Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth, Sydney and Melbourne, from October 13th to December 3rd.

Spanning a range of genres, this year’s offerings include  comedies, action movies, manga adaptations, romances, drama and more. The opening night film is Mumon: The Land of Stealth, from director Yoshihiro Nakamura (Fish Story) and starring Satoshi Ohno (The Locked Room), which thrusts a  deadly ninja into a pitched battle between a warlord’s army and the ninjas in his province.

Other program highlights this year include Birds Without Names from Kazuya Shiraishi (The Devil’s Path), which just screened at TIFF;  the heartfelt comedy My Uncle; and A Double Life, a poignant drama from debut feature film director Yoshiyuki Kishi, which was nominated for Best Director and Best Actress at London’s Raindance Film Festival.

The JFF Classics program this year centres on the works of Seijun Suzuki, with screenings of the crime classics Tokyo Drifter, Branded to Kill, Youth of the Beast, and more. A true avant-garde artist of the screen, Suzuki specialised in existential yakuza dramas and inspired generations of hard-boiled storytellers around the world

Tokyo Drifter

“Every film in this year’s program was handpicked to present fresh perspectives and showcase the next generation of Japanese cinema,” said JFF Program Coordinator Margarett Cortez. “Among this selection are genre-benders such as Before We Vanish by veteran Kiyoshi Kurosawa, stunning arthouse comeback film Snow Woman by Asia’s indie darling Kiki Sugino, and international collaborations such as Gukoroku – Traces of Sin by filmmaker Kei Ishikawa and Polish cinematographer Piotr Niemyjski. We’re also excited to introduce new blood in the Japanese cinema industry through a short film special supported by ‘New Directions in Japanese Cinema’, a Japanese government program supporting emerging filmmakers.”

For full details, head over to the official site.



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