Jun 09

Appassionata (1984) aka Jo no mai

003dc391This story is based on the novel “Jo No Mai” by Tomiko Miyao which is based on the life of painter Shōen Uemura (1875–1949), the first woman to be awarded the Order of Culture. The title refers to the masterpiece bijinga (“picture of a beautiful woman”) that Uemura painted at the age of 61. The main character, Tsuya Shimamura, is born in Kyoto as the second daughter of a tea trader who dies before her birth. Tsuya, who loves painting more than anything and is hopeless at housework, attends art school and at age 15 receives the name Shōsui (from the characters for “pine” and “green”) from her teacher. The crown prince of England purchases one of her works, propelling her to fame overnight. The novel portrays the remainder of her stormy life, during which she is impregnated by her teacher and raises a fatherless child; through it all she devotes herself to her painting, undaunted.
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May 20

Minazuki (1999) aka 皆月

0036ee3e.jpegAkira’s wife walks out on him, leaving him to confide in his gangster brother-in-law. Using only a cryptic note as a clue the two brothers go on a road trip to find his wife. After a series of violent encounters with strangers, Akira meets a prostitute. The pair start a relationship. After Akira finds his wife, he questions whether he still wants to be with her.
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Feb 26

The Christ of Nanjing (1995) aka Nan Jing de ji du


Based on a novel by Ryunosuke Akutagawa, this stylized depression-inducer from director Tony Au is an interesting but draining experience. Tony Leung is Japanese writer Ryuichi Okagawa, who falls in love with an innocent Chinese girl named Jin Hua (Yasuko Tomita) when visiting China. Her parents sell her into prostitution to fund their farmland, but Jin Hua believes that she’s being married to Okagawa. Eventually, she discovers the truth and sinks into despair. Okagawa leaves, and Jin Hua is left to question her faith, which is in Christ and his teachings.
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Feb 20

Perfect Education 4: Secret Basement (2003) aka Kanzen-naru shiiku: Himitsu no chika-shitsu

perfect_education_4_secret_basementA shy, nerdy man, Takeru finds a schoolgirl hooker Lily is unconscious in a Tokyo park, so he decides to bring her home and lock her up in a secret basement. Although Lily is afraid of him, in fact, Takeru didn’t do anything to hurt her. After Lily begins to uncover a shocking episode from Takeur’s past, she gradually falls for him and they make love in this secret basement…
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