04 April 2016

30th Image Forum Festival 2016

The cherry blossoms are in full bloom in Tokyo, which means the latest edition of the Image Forum Festival is fast approaching.  It begins April 29th at its home at the Image Forum Theatre in Shibuya and runs until May 6th.  The festival will then tour the country until mid-July so check out their website for locations near you if you live in Japan.

As usual, the programme features a diverse range of the weird and the wonderful from far and wide.  Some of the highlights of this year include The Guillaume Nicloux’s comedy-drama The Kidnapping of Michel Houellebecq (L'enlèvement de Michel Houellebecq / ミシェル・ウエルベック誘拐事件, 2014), starring the notorious author himself, and Andreas Horvath’s acclaimed documentary Helmut Berger, Actor (俳優、ヘルムート・バーガー, 2015) about the Austrian actor who worked so closely with his partner Luchino Visconti in the 60s and 70s. 

In terms of animation, there is a wide selection of Japanese artists’ works from the 1990s, 2000s and 2010s on offer.  There are also programmes highlighting the animation of other Southeast Asian countries under the umbrella “Anime-Asean” including selections of animated shorts from Singapore and Indonesia.  In my opinion, the “must-see” programme is “Japan Tomorrow” (ジャパン・トゥモロウ) which showcases these recent avant-garde animation and experimental works by Japanese directors:

To  Heel (愛のかかと / Ai no kakato, 2016)
Madoka / 円香 (Geidai 2016 grad)

Hayato NOVE / 野辺ハヤト (website)

and, end (えんえん / En En, 2015)
Mio YAMANAKA / 山中澪 (Geidai 2015 grad)

Don’t  Tell Mom (おかあさんにないしょ, 2015)
Sawako KABUKI / 冠木佐和子

Clickety-Clack Film “High-speed Express”
(快速急行ガタゴトフィルム /  Kaisoku Kyūkō Gatagoto Firumu, 2015)
Kenta NOMURA / 野村建太 (Tokyo Eizo Brig.)

Datum Point (水準原点 / Suijun Genten, 2015)
Ryo Orikasa / 折笠良 (website)

Schizophrenia (スキゾフレニア, Sukizofuzenia, 201)
Yuri MURAOKA / 村岡由梨 (website / vimeo)

Chocolate Cake and Hōryū-ji
(チョコレートケーキと法隆寺 / Chokorēto keki to Hōryū-ji, 2016)
Keita MUKAI / 向井啓太

Nothing You Need to See
(何も見なくていい / Nani mo Minakute ii, 2015)
Keigo Itō /  伊藤圭吾 (Jury Selection JMAF 2015)

Haha yo, Anime wo miyou  (母よ、アニメを見よう, 2015)
Shun ABE / 阿部舜 (tumblr)

Pyramid (PYRAMID-破壊の記憶の走馬灯 / Hakai no Kioku no Sōmatō, 2015)
Shin SASAKUBO / 笹久保伸 (website, twitter)

Marginal Man (マージナルマンのトーソー / Mājinaruman no tōsō, 2016)
Rei KAWAKITA / 川北玲 (twitter)

Mayumi (まゆみ , 2015)
Chinami TANIGUCHi /  谷口ちなみ  (tumblr, twitter, vimeo)

Watashi niwa Mirai ga aru (私には未来がある, 2016)
Rieko OUCHI /大内りえ子 (website)