Japanese season comes to QUAD

QUAD in Derby''Photo by Graham Lucas Commons
QUAD in Derby''Photo by Graham Lucas Commons

QUAD in Derby will be hosting a visit by Japanese film director Shinobu Yaguchi for a question and answer session with a screening of his latest film as part of a special film season.

In an expansive selection, QUAD will be screening nine contemporary Japanese films as part of this year’s Japan Foundation UK’s annual Touring Film Programme.

This year’s programme, which is themed ‘encounters’, is an enlightening introduction to Japanese cinema and offers a broad picture of the daily reality and experiences of a country.

Director Shinobu Yaguchi will be in QUAD to give a director’s Q&A to his new film Wood Job! which begins the season in QUAD on February 6.

Wood Job! is based on a bittersweet, best-selling coming-of-age novel by Shion Miura about an ordinary 18-year-old high school graduate, Yuki, who has failed his university entrance exams.

Finding himself without a job or anything much in the way of career prospects, he abruptly decides to leave the city life behind, prompted by a brochure that advertises a one-year forestry program.

Yuki ends up in Kamusari, a backwater village nestled deep in the mountains, far beyond civilization and mobile phone coverage.

There he meets Iida, a combination of mountain boy scout, handyman and Wildman, and consequently Yuki learns to love life in the woods and finds himself embracing the dream of forging a new ‘green’ lifestyle. Wood Job! screens on Friday, February 6, at 6.15pm.

Nobody To Watch Over Me, directed by Ryoichi Kimizuka, is a deep drama which depicts the fears of a modern day society; portraying the distress of the family of a juvenile criminal and the conflicts of the detective ordered to protect them.

The Funamura family is the target of mass media attention after their first son commits an act of murder. Furthermore, every move detective Katsuura takes in protecting Saori, the bewildered daughter of the family, is being fully exposed over the internet. In a deadly game of hide and seek.

Nobody To Watch Over Me (Daremo Mamotte Kurenai) screens on Friday, February 13, at 6.15pm.

In the epic fresco Blood And Bones, director Yoichi Sai brilliantly uses the biography of one man as a key to an entire social history of a vanished community, raising difficult questions about Korean-Japanese identity.

A virtual companion piece to Hou Hsiao-Hsien’s The Puppetmaster. Kim Shun-Pei emigrates as a young man from Jeju Island in Korea to Osaka and works his way up to head a small criminal empire.

A lifelong fear of poverty meshes with his compulsive womanising, and his capacity for violence, to turn him into a monster. Blood And Bones (Chi To Hone) screens February 13, at 8.50pm and will be introduced by Peter Munford.

Carmen From Kawachi is an interesting variant on Bizet’s Carmen from acclaimed director Seijun Suzuki.

It tells of young Karumen, who leaves home after being gang-raped by thugs from school.

She goes to Osaka, where men fall at her feet when she becomes a nightclub singer.

This experimental film is shot variously in black-and-white, red-and-white, blue-and-white; the colours used to accentuate the story.

Carmen From Kawachi screens at QUAD on Saturday, February 14, at 3.45pm.

The Handsome Suit, directed by Tsutomu Hanabusa, is about a kind-hearted chef Takuro who has lots of friends, but has never been considered attractive to the opposite sex.

One day, Takuro is approached with an offer of a special suit that can make him instantly handsome simply by wearing it.

He jumps at the opportunity to change his appearance, and it works so well he begins working as a top male model.

The suit is not without its flaws, however.

The Handsome Suit (Hansamu Sutsu) screens on Saturday, February 14, at 6:30pm.

All films are advised certificate (15) and will be screened in Japanese with English subtitles.

To book seats, please call the box office on 01332 290606.

Photo credit: Graham Lucas Commons