Saitama Kazoku (2013)
A Japanese drama directed by Keihiro Kanyama.
Detective Murakami meets a girl who suffers from memory loss. The girl has special abilities including the ability to talk with the dead. Detective Murakami names her Maki. Detective Murakami and Maki work together to solves a massive murder case involving a mad bomber. Maki’s identity is revealed during their investigation.
And the Mud Ship Sails Away… (2013)
Takashi is country hipster, work avoiding, not-so-smart life expert in vague rural-urban area in the north from Tokyo. He lives together with his grandmother and laughs at his friend who goes to real work – shoveling cow manure. On one day, a young woman arrives to the area and claims to be Takashi’s half-sister from this’ father’s escapade. And she is the kind you can’t get easily rid off…
After young pop idol Arina is raped by a police officer, her pain drives her to insanity. Her sister Keiko, full of anger, won’t stop until she finds the man responsible for Arina’s downfall and make sure he feels her revenge. Keiko will make sure justice is served!
TAP Perfect Education (2013)
In Okinawa, a down-and-out middle-aged yakuza underling named Shidara kidnaps and confines a high school girl named Yui, the daughter of a fellow yakuza’s mistress.
Blue Bustamante (2013)
A father who works abroad as an OFW ends up secretly playing a superhero role in a Japanese TV show.
A South Korean exchange student named Ji-Ho gets to know Kaede and Yusuke at a Japanese university. Kaede and Yusuke can’t seem to honestly convey their feelings for each other, so Ji-Ho takes it upon herself to play matchmaker while teaching them the Korean formula for successful romance.
Genei wo Kakeru Taiyou: Fumikomenai Kokoro (2013)
Unaired 14th episode of Genei wo Kakeru Taiyou, broadcast on Nico Nico and included in the 4th Blu-ray and DVD volumes. It shows Akari and Fuyuna’s lives prior to the main series as well as how Luna got started as a magical girl.
I Am Ichihashi: Journal of a Murderer (2013)
Tatsuya Ichihashi kills a British woman who taught English in Japan. Ichihashi escapes the police dragnet to Aomori, 550 kilometres away. Learning that he is wanted by the law, he cuts his own lips to change his features. Burdened by guilt, he continues to avoid the law enforcement. He travels 1000 kilometres to Shikoku to participate in a pilgrimage in hope of resurrecting his murder victim. Obviously it fails and he remains a fugitive. As if to escape his own guilt he changes his identity and has cosmetic surgery to further alter his features. He works at construction sites and when people get suspicious of him he flees to a far-off island in Okinawa where he relies on survival skills.
Tale of a Butcher Shop (2013)
The Kitades run a butcher shop in Kaizuka City outside Osaka, raising and slaughtering cattle to sell the meat in their store. The seventh generation of their family’s business, they are descendants of the buraku people, a social minority held over from the caste system abolished in the 19th century that is still subject to discrimination. As the Kitades are forced to make the difficult decision to shut down their slaughterhouse, the question posed by the film is whether doing this will also result in the deconstruction of the prejudices imposed on them. Though primarily documenting the process of their work with meticulous detail, Aya Hanabusa also touches on the Kitades’ participation in the buraku liberation movement. Hanabusa’s heartfelt portrait expands from the story of an old-fashioned family business competing with corporate supermarkets, toward a subtle and sophisticated critique of social exclusion and the persistence of ancient prejudices.
KOTATSU,ORANGE, AND MEOW! (2013)
The sequel to a love story based in the “yuri” lesbian romance genre. The desires of its three central characters, Kotatsu, Orange, and Meow, become entangled. Kajino Ryutaro, who directed the previous film, returns to concoct a tale of platonic love with a sweet-and-sour taste. Kotatsu, Orange, and Meow meet on a social networking site for women seeking women. The amiable trio embark on a hot spring vacation, but Kotatsu and Orange disappear for some unknown reason. Hibari (Minami Yui) and Izumi (Sakai Ran) take over their online names and link up with the abandoned Meow (Kijima Noriko), then head off on another trip to a hot spring.
The Horses of Fukushima (2013)
Fukushima’s Minami-soma has a ten-centuries-long tradition of holding the Soma Nomaoi (“chasing wild horses”) festival to celebrate the horse’s great contribution to human society. Following the meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in the wake of the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami, local people were forced to flee the area. Rancher Shinichiro Tanaka returned to find his horses dead or starving, and refused to obey the government’s orders to kill them. While many racehorses are slaughtered for horsemeat, his horses had been subjected to radiation and were inedible. Yoju Matsubayashi, whose “Fukushima: Memories of the Lost Landscape” is one of the most impressive documentaries made immediately after the disaster, spent the summer of 2011 helping Tanaka take care of his horses. In documenting their rehabilitation, he has produced a profound meditation on these animals who live as testaments to the tragic bargain human society made with nuclear power.
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