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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Ryusuke Hamaguchi's 5-hour opus HAPPY HOUR






Ryusuke Hamaguchi's wonderful HAPPY HOUR, like the Iwai Shunji retrospective, was also part of the Japan Now section in the Tokyo International Film Festival.

I need to give props to Japan Now. Ever since the festival started this section last year, with Ando-sensei (yup, my former university professor Kohei Ando-sensei1!!) serving as programming advisor, the section has become one of the main attractions of the festival. The screening of noteworthy (of commercial or critical merit) Japanese films of the past year, complete with Q and A sessions moderated by Ando-sensei, had been great!

I remember having dinner with Ando-sensei in August right after he had served as jury member of the Guanajuato International Film Festival (where he saw Happy Hour for the very first time and awarded it the Best International Feature Narrative award) and we discussed about the trickiness of trying to program this film at the Tokyo International Film Festival due to its length (5 hours!!!) I said to Ando-sensei that if the film would ever show in the festival, I will definitely go and see it.

I'm very glad Ando-sensei managed to program the film, and made the experience even richer by making it an all-nighter screening!

I wrote this a few hours after the screening:

Monday, November 28, 2016

My love letter to Iwai Shunji's Love Letter


I wrote this on Facebook last month, after watching Iwai Shunji's Love Letter at the Tokyo International Film Festival. I have seen this film countless times in various forms, on VCD, on DVD, on digital file, either on TV or on computer, but never on the big screen, so that particular screening in Tokyo left me overwhelmed, and of course, nostalgic.

Here's my love letter to the film Love Letter:



I saw Iwai Shunji's Love Letter (2005) on the big screen today. Sometimes you see a film at the right time, at the right age, so you fall in love with it in ways you cannot imagine.

It was 1998. I was 14 when I first saw Love Letter, I think this might be the film that made me fell in love with Japanese cinema, the emotional impact it left me was immense. The lyricism, the romanticism, the pain of unspoken love and the melancholy of memories, I was intoxicated by these vivid feelings through this film. I loved a little more, contemplated a little more, daydreamed a little more, became more obsessed with the snow. Films can do these things to you, when you see it at the right time, at the right age.

[Photo] Can't ride a bike here


Can't ride a bike here

(Check out more photos from my Instagram account.)

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Friday, November 25, 2016

Monday, November 21, 2016

ASIAN THREE-FOLD MIRRORS: REFLECTIONS @ TOKYO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL 2016



It's already been a month and I never had the chance to write about the Tokyo International Film Festival.

This always happens when I'm preparing for a film shoot. I lose track of time. Today becomes yesterday, tomorrow becomes today, and I don't even notice it.

Last month I went to the Tokyo International Film Festival for the world premiere of the omnibus project, Asian Three-Fold Mirror: Reflections. I was one of the producers of the segment, Pigeon by Isao Yukisada (along with Ming Jin and Shunsuke Koga-san)

So, here are some photos of me at the red carpet. I managed to meet popular actor Saitoh Takumi, whom I met two years ago in Bali when he was doing the film Taksu. I also met Rin Takanashi, the star of Abbas Kiarostami's final film Like Someone in Love.



Friday, November 11, 2016

[Photo] Birthday cake for my aunt and cousin is the greatest birthday cake ever.


Birthday cake for my aunt and cousin is the greatest birthday cake ever.

(Check out more photos from my Instagram account.)

Sunday, November 06, 2016

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

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