• Movie Review

    Kita Kita (2017)

    Kita Kita aka I See You (2017) is a Filipino language film, set in Sapporo, Japan, and directed by Sigrid Andrea Bernardo. A story that was warm, with excellent casting, and a beautiful city as backdrop. Though a little slow, I liked it. Available on Netflix. Lea (played brilliantly by Alessandra de Rossi), is a Filipino tour guide living in the Japanese city of Sapporo – on screen the city looked alluring, surely going into my bucket list for Japan. She is a kind person, always helping the needy and poor. She is engaged for 3 years but that relationship is not going well. Suddenly one day, she loses her…

  • Movie Review

    The Sleeping Insect (2020)

    The Sleeping Insect (2020), directed by Yurina Kaneko, is a thriller, that’s streaming for ‘free’ as part of the Japanese Film Festival. A large part of the 60-minute film happens inside a city bus, where we are riding along with the protagonist, a young lady, a musician is following an old woman, after being captivated by a tune she is humming. This leads her to a lovely family. The story is a familiar one, with no new ideas shown, but the style of the film-making, a combination of fervency and casualness at the same time, made it absorbing.

  • One Cut of the Dead (2017)
    Movie Review

    One Cut of the Dead (2017)

    One Cut of the Dead (2017) is a comedy zombie film. The film directed by Shin’ichirô Ueda, starts with a shooting of a zombie TV show at an abandoned building used by the Japanese army during the second world war to experiment bringing the dead back to life.  Unaware to the crew, there seem to be real zombies around them who keep turning everyone into a Zombie. The second half covering the script discussion and planning for the TV show was hilarious. We get to see a range of characters – the star, a young heart-throb, comes with an oversized ego; the heroine has poor acting skills; the cameraman a drunkard;…

  • Parallel World Love Story (2019)
    Movie Review

    Parallel World Love Story (2019)

    Parallel World Love Story(2019) is a Sci-Fi Romance film from Japan. Director Yoshitaka Mori has made an engaging film involving Brain research and the Parallel world. Every day during his train commute to college Takashi Tsurug sees Mayuko Tsuno in the train travelling parallel to his. He is enchanted by her looks, but unfortunately, they never get to meet each other. After many years, Takashi meets Mayuko but unfortunately, she is now his best friend’s girlfriend. In a parallel life, Takashi is living with Mayuko, who is now a post-doctorate student and he is working in the same biotech firm. So what’s the connection between the two worlds? Though a…

  • The Tenants Downstairs
    Movie Review

    The Tenants Downstairs (2016)

    This week ICAF, Chennai (Indo Cine Appreciation Foundation)  is hosting a Taiwanese film festival. As part of that, today’s first film screened was The Tenants Downstairs (2016). It was a well-made film, a black thriller, with a few scenes that were repulsive for me –  loads of blood, the severing of body parts and the likes. The story starts with a police investigation of a landlord (Chang Chia-chun) who has rented a few studio apartments to tenants. Leading an uninteresting life with no family, the landlord starts spying with cameras every aspect of the tenants. The tenants are a varied bunch comprising a widower with a young girl, a gym…

  • Movie Review

    Shoplifters (2018)

    A Japanese film, Shoplifters (2018) is about a poor family who takes to stealing items from supermarkets and has won many accolades including Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival in May 2018. I watched at a special screening as part of the Inauguration of the 16th Chennai International Film Festival. A wonderful film it was, don’t miss it.  The family of a grandma, a young boy, a working girl and a middle-aged couple residing in a shabby house in Tokyo find it difficult to make the ends meet. Into this mix, comes a little girl who gets tortured at her own house, she finds a real home here. Over…

  • Movie Review

    The Seal Of The Sun (2016)

    Who can forget the deadly combination of Earthquake, Tsunami and Nuclear meltdowns that Fukushima (Japan) went through on 11 March 2011. When I read about the incidents in Newspaper, later in IEEE Spectrum magazine a detailed coverage of engineering problems that occurred there I was shell shocked – first for the nice people of Japan, a country that I admire and love visiting; second for my own safety if a similar incident happens in India. This movie “The Seal of the Sun (2016)”  aka Taiyôu no futa screened today in Palazzo as part of Chennai International Film Festival, was all about what happened immediately after the Earthquake and the next 3 days in the offices of…

  • Movie Review

    Departures (2008)

    Departures by Yôjirô Takita is a Japanese Movie released in 2008. The movie is an academy award winner for Best Foreign Language movie and has won 30+ other awards around the world. This is my all-time favourite film, a must watch! The movie is about a Cello player in Tokyo who is without a job after the orchestra he was playing got closed. He returns to his native town with his newlywed wife and finds himself getting a job of encoffiner (beautifying the dead before cremating or burying). He tries his best to keep it as a secret to his wife. The movie is brilliantly taken, and as a viewer,…