Japanese Film Festival 2018 in Malaysia to begin

IT’s popular because the selection hits the right buttons. So here comes the Japanese Film Festival 2018, in its 15th edition.

Ramen Head, a scene.

Ramen Head, a scene.

Featuring 13 recent films — drama, suspense, documentary, and comedy – from Sept 6, at GSC Mid Valley, GSC NU Sentral, GSC Pavilion KL and GSC 1Utama. It’ll then travel Penang, Kuching, Kota Kinabalu, and Johor Baru.

The movies are: Ramen Heads, Mixed Doubles,  3Ft Ball & Souls, Born Bone Born, Perfect World, Tremble All You Want, The 8-Year Engagement, Yakiniku Dragon,. Her Sketchbook,  We Make Antiques!, The Gift of Memory, and Memoirs of a Murder, among others.

Special screenings (only at Nu Sentral) are films shot in Japan by Malaysian filmmakers. These are: Fly Me To Minami and New World by Lim Kah Wai, Heart of Taiko by Shamyl Othman & Lydia Lubon and Short films, Kingyo and Exhalation by Edmund Yeo

There’s a one-day marathon of Chihayafuru!

*Ticket sales starts on Aug 30, 2018 and can be purchased through GSC box office, ticketing kiosk, GSC e-Payment at gsc.com.my or GSC Mobile App.

**Tickets for JFF 2018 will be sold at RM8.50 except for “Ramen Heads” and “3Ft Ball & Souls” which will be sold at prevailing GSC ticket pricing.

*** Free admission for special screenings of Malaysian filmmakers’ works, but booking is required via www.eventbrite.com.


Here are some details of the movies:

FOOD: In the documentary ‘Ramen Heads,’ Osamu Tomita, Japan’s reigning king of ramen, takes us into his world, revealing every single step of his obsessive approach to creating the perfect soup and noodles, and his relentless search for the highest-quality ingredients. The film also profiles five other notable ramen shops, each with its own philosophy and flavour, which exemplify various different aspects the ramen world.

COMEDY: Born, Bone Born (Senkotsu( is the second feature by Okinawan comedian Toshiyuki Teruya, a.k.a. Gori (one half of the popular comedy duo Garage Sale). A sunny, humanistic comedy set in Aguni, a remote island of Okinawa. A visibly pregnant Yuko (Ayame Misaki, Radiance) returns home to find her family still grappling with the recent passing of her mother, Emiko, while her father (Eiji Okuda) becomes increasingly withdrawn and her older brother (Michitaka Tsutsui) hopelessly combative. When neighbours start to gossip about Yuko’s fatherless unborn child, the local matriarch comes to her defence alongside a childhood friend. Soon, it will be a year since Emiko’s passing, and time to exhume her and wash her bones as dictated by the island’s Senkotsu ritual.

DRAMA: Her Sketchbook is about Mami who doesn’t have a job and is closed off in her own world. Her father Eisuke struggles to strike the right distance from her and worries about her future, so he finds her a job debugging video games. She silently plays video games for a job that wasn’t supposed to involve talking with anyone, but things don’t go as planned!

COMEDY: We Make Antiques! is set in Sakai, a city near Osaka by the bay, famous for its swords in the old days and kitchen knives today. Norio is an antique dealer in the city. Sasuke is a potter in the city. Seventeenth century tea master Sen No Rikyu appears before them one day.

WEEPER: The 8-Year Engagement (8-nengoshi no hanayome) revolves around twenty-somethings Hisashi and Mai who are engaged. Suddenly Mai’s heart stops and she falls into a coma all Hisashi can do is remain by her side, albeit without knowing whether she might improve. Things look up when Mai finally comes out of the coma and becomes conscious again, but she has suffered brain damage and cannot remember her man.

**This is the cover picture.


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