2018 Edition

Destination… Japan

The film programme of “Destination…” will take viewers on a journey exploring Japan, featuring recent works by Japanese and other filmmakers and recounting the country first of all through the geographical characteristics, according to the traditions and specific nature of Trento Film Festival.

Masaaki Miyazawa’s Umi Yama AidaIn Between Mountains And Oceans and the French director Damien Faure’s Milieu are two works getting to the root of the role of nature in Japanese culture and spirituality, the former focusing in particular on the meaning of forests and trees, while the latter revolves around the mountains. Ryusuke Ohno’s Chiisana Akari and Shigeru Kobayashi’s Dryads In A Snow Valley focus on the life of small highly resilient mountain communities in different areas of the country, while Akio Yuguchi’s short film Ikeru Hito shows how in Japan too depopulation and ageing are placing the survival of a whole lifestyle in symbiosis with nature at risk.

Dealing with nature and the mountains in Japan means above all considering the forests covering much of the surface area, and trees, which have a more profound spiritual value there than in any other country in the world, are indeed the central player in two short works, Tetsuichiro Tsuta’s imaginative Forestry and the fascinating Komorebitatchi, co-directed by the Swiss filmmaker Sophie Perrier and Masanori Omori. Of the many painful documentaries made in the last few years that have recorded the after effects of the earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 and the resulting nuclear catastrophe caused by the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant, two of the most recent will be presented, the time that has passed since the event making the impact of the tragedy even more evident: Furusato by the German filmmaker Thorsten Trimpop, which documents survival in the “exclusion zone” and rural area surrounding the plant; and Haruka Komori’s Trace Of Breath which does the same for the area hit by the tsunami, concentrating on a single bizarre and stubborn character.

There will be a change of course towards the Japanese gastronomic culture, highlighting how and to what extent this is linked to many other themes that the programme touches on, thanks to Yu Nakajima’s short film Katsuo-Bushi and above all to two films, these too not yet released in Italy, like all those mentioned here: Koki Shigeno’s Ramen Heads, a journey exploring the incredible world of the ultimate Japanese dish; and Erik Shirai’s The Birth Of Saké, which will reveal the secrets and rituals behind traditional production of something that it is difficult to continue describing simply as a drink once you have seen the film. The “Destination… Japan” project has been carried out with funding from the Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Trento and Rovereto.

In collaboration with:
Istituto Giapponese di Cultura




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