Common life and the ties of conflict associated with domestic life rule the screen in what we call the latest Japanese cinema on the hands of young generations of filmmakers striving to influence common scenarios of a society that survives between tradition and contemporary trends. Japan appears through the windows that cinema opens about reality, surprising us with situations in which we can see ourselves as the protagonist. This cinema receives great influences from filmmakers such as Yasujiro Ozu or Akira Kurosawa, but also the ones made by the second half of the 20th Century literature up to our current days. The seven films presented within this film series have been filmed between 2018 and 2019 and all of them show the complexity of the worlds we are allowed to access, with the intention to identify the singularity of the individuals that compose a urban landscape that attracts the foreigner for its identitary character, and because they knew how to incorporate the past in the present in which the moving image easily introduces us that no other medium has been able to do.


Saturday 14th December 2019, 20h
HIS LOST NAME, Dir: Nanako Hirose | 2018 | 113’ | Thriller

A young man is found almost unconscious on a river bank. A middle-aged widower Tetsuro shelters the man who tells nothing but his name “Shin-ichi.” Though baffled by the old man’s eagerness, who treats Shin-ichi like his own son by providing a place to live and a job, Shin-ichi starts to feel at ease and tries to confess his past. In the meantime, there is a rumor about an incident a little while ago in the town, and people begin to suspect the stranger. The film premiered at the Busan International Film Festival 2018, was presented at the Hong Kong International Film Festival 2019 and the Palm Springs International Film Festival 2019, participated in the official panorama section at the Asian Film Festival Barcelona 2019, and was awarded a special mention at the TOKYO FILMeX 2018.

Nanako Hirose is a Japanese director who, after graduating from Musashino Art University, joined Kore-eda Hirokazu’s production company BUN-BUKU in 2011. She worked in Kore-eda’s TV series “Going Home” (2012), “Like Father, Like Son” (2013), “Our Little Sister” (2015), “After The Storm” (2016), and Miwa Nishikawa’s “The Long Excuse” (2016). “His Lost Name” marks as her feature film debut.

Saturday 21st December 2019, 20h
ASIAN THREE-FOLD MIRROR 2018: JOURNEY, Dir: Edwin, Daishi Matsunaga, Degena Yun | 2018 | 83’ | Drama

This omnibus film consists of three films made by three directors from three countries. With “Journey” as the theme, each of these films tells about a journey. “The Sea”, by Degena Yun (China), telling about a mother and child’s trip to the sea from Beijing. “Hekishu”, by Daishi Matsunaga (Japan), about the journey of a Japanese businessman involved in infrastructure development in Yangon. The last is a film titled “Variable No.3”, by Edwin (Indonesia), which tells the story of a couple’s journey to Tokyo.

Edwin is an Indonesian director. He is known for his films “Blind Pig Who Wants to Fly” (2008), “Postcards from the Zoo” (2012) and “A Very Boring Conversation” (2006). Daishi Matsunaga is a Japanese director and actor. Since 2000, he has primarily worked as a director of commercials, music videos and documentaries. Degena Yun is a Chinese director and writer born in Inner Mongolia and based in Beijing. She is known for her films “A Simple Goodbye” (2015) and “ Latitude 52” (2012).

Saturday 28th December 2019, 20h
CALL FOR DREAMS, Dir: Ran Slavin | 2018 | 83’ | Drama, Thriller

In a rain drenched Tokyo, from a high rise apartment, Eko complicates her life by publishing a ‘Call For Dreams’ ad in the newspaper. She visits strangers who leave descriptions of dreams on her analogue answering machine, and carries a task in relation to their recording as a form of fantasy deciphering ritual. Details accumulate to a network of dreams involving her neighbor, a Russian mobster, a female body builder, an elderly woman and an Israeli detective investigating a murder in Tel Aviv, in a story that unfolds in parallel lines. The film participated in the NETPAC section at the Asian Film Festival Barcelona 2019.

Ran Slavin is a filmmaker, video artist & experimental electronic music producer. Ran Slavin’s work is cross media and project based, often site specific. It includes cinema, video installation, sound composition, photography and print editions. With works featuring dream influenced arrangements that bestow uncanny fusions of digital and real, narratives of disorientation, science fiction and Neo-Noir. He is known for “Call for Dreams” (2018), “The Insomniac City Cycles” (2009) and “Ursulimum” (2011).

Saturday 4th January 2020, 20h
AND YOUR BIRD CAN SING, Dir: Sho Miyake | 2018 | 107’ | Drama

Miyake Sho’s naturalistic and quietly illuminating film portrays the aimless youth drift towards love and maturity. Emoto Tasuku stars as an unnamed protagonist whose lazy worldview is subtly challenged when his girlfriend, Sachiko, meets his unemployed roommate, Shizuo. Based on a 1982 novel by the late Sato Yasushi, whose writing inspired “Sketches of Kaitan City” (2010) and “The Light Shines Only There” (2014), this unhurried comedy-drama captures the idyllic digressions and restless brooding of youth approaching adulthood. The film was presented at the Berlin International Film Festival 2019, Jeonju International Film Festival 2019, Tokyo International Film Festival 2018, the Hong Kong International Film Festival 2019, and participated in the discoveries section at the Asian Film Festival Barcelona 2019. And it was nominated to the Best Film and won the award to the Best Actor at the Kinema Junpo Awards 2019.

Sho Miyake is a director and writer. He completed the introductory course in fiction at the Tokyo Film School in 2007. And he is known for “Playback” (2012) and “Wild Tour” (2019).

Saturday 11th January 2020, 20h
12 SUICIDAL TEENS, Dir: Tsutsumi Yukihiko | 2019 | 117’ | Thriller

Twelve kids preparing a suicide pact in an abandoned hospital discover the body of an unknown boy. As the tension builds, they must ask themselves if there is a murderer among them, and if they can go through with their pact. This riveting thriller addresses the urgent issue of widespread suicide among contemporary teens. The film has been presented at the Hong Kong International Film Festival 2019 and it participated in the Oficial Section in the Asian Film Festival Barcelona 2019

Yukihiko Tsutsumi is a Japanese filmmaker, director, and visual artist. Starting in music video clips, he branched out to fields including stage and music events, TV dramas, TV commercials, and films. His film “Beautiful Dreamer” (2000) recorded a box office hit in Japan.

Saturday 18th January 2020, 20h
PORTRAITS OF A RAINBOW, Dir: Ayumi Nakagawa | 2018 | 79’ | Documentary

Leslie works taking celebrities’ portraits like Madonna. He works worldwide and had lived in Japan for the last twenty five years, where there is a rising movement for LGBTQ, however, he has been deeply troubled that they still have to live invisibly. Leslie is gay and can’t tell it to his family in Singapore. Even so, he embarks on an ambitious project to photograph ten thousand LGBTQ people, in order to hold the exhibition Out in Japan. His first portraits photo exhibition held in Nara, a conservative city in Japan, was poorly attended but he continues to take portraits.

The filmmaker Ayumi Nakagawa followed this photographer for a year, while making the first thousand portraits. She focused on the lives of four people: a same sex couple trying to give birth, a teacher who protects HIV positives, a transgender man who suffers from his partner’s suicide. Along the way, Leslie himself was enduring a self-transformation due to this moving experience.

Saturday 25th January 2020, 20h
| 2019 | 50’ | Documentary, Science Fiction

In Japan, the nuclear threat influenced the creation of the kaiju eiga, which is a giant monster’s film genre. The first kaiju eiga was Godzilla (1954). For more than six decades, there have been several generations of filmmakers who have shown different sides of the monster taking into account the relationship between Godzila and the atomic bomb. But, which is the origin of this relation, and how has it evolved throughout its more than sixty years of history? Learn about this story through more than twenty interviews with filmmakers, actors and film experts who have worked on Godzilla films from 1954 to the present.

Jonathan Bellés (Castellón de la Plana, 1988) is a Spanish producer, director and screenwriter of short films, video art and documentaries. He has a degree in Fine Arts and a PhD in Arts from the Polytechnic University of Valencia. Bellés has directed documentaries such as “René Magritte: drôle de bonhomme” (2010), which deals with the life of the Belgian painter Magritte, “No es cosa de risa” (2016), which delves into the ins and outs of comedy in Spain and “Los albores del kaiju eiga “(2019), a documentary about the origins of the popular Godzilla monster linked to the atomic era. In addition, he has produced, written and directed works of video art and video dance, such as “L’ennéagramme” (2011), winner of the national video art prize Valencia Crea and “Ateneo” (2016), a work which goes into the murky relationship between two characters seeking forgiveness.

Film Series: From 14th December 2019 to 25th January 2020
Cinemes Girona · C/ Girona, 175, 08025 Barcelona
Entry price: 3,5 € | Price for partners and members of Cinemes Girona: 2 €