The Japanese Film Festival in Melbourne

With two days of the festival left, I hope you’ve been enjoying it as much as the Japan in Melbourne team have! If you’re only just hearing about it now, don’t sweat it! There are still plenty of great movies to catch before the festival ends with the final screening of ‘The Long Excuse’ on Sunday the 4th of December at 7pm.


There are some great films being shown over the weekend at both ACMI and Melbourne Central Hoyts including romances such as My Korean Teacher and Haunted Campus, Action films like SIX FOUR (parts one and two), crime and mystery films such as Creepy, Twisted Justice and Hime-Anole, and drama films such as The Magnificent Nine, What a Wonderful Family and The Long Excuse. If you’re into slice of life style films, how about Seto & Utsumi, Something Like, Something Like It or Nagasaki: Memories of My Son? Or if anime is more your style, there is also a screening of CHIBI MARUKO CHAN -A Boy from Italy-.

With the festival finishing up in a few days, we’d like to reflect on our time throughout it!


The Japan in Melbourne team kicked off the festival celebrations by enjoying the opening night ceremony at ACMI on the 24th of November. There were a number of guests who attended the opening night and the screening of the opening film for Melbourne, After the Storm. The ceremony opened with a few speeches discussing the importance of festivals like these being able to give Australians the chance to get a glimpse of Japanese culture, lifestyle and people through film.


Consulate General Keiko Haneda making her speech

After around an hour of talking amongst the many attendees present for the opening film, everyone headed through to the cinema entrance and enjoyed the film ‘After the Storm’.


Ladies from Melbourne Matcha Adventures we met on the night

‘After the Storm’ was an enjoyable slice of life styled film that took the genre to a new level. You were thrown into a family’s life and when the film ended, you left it, just like that. There were some deep, meaningful messages throughout, and a resolution that was perplexing, however felt as though it reflected the paths of life very well. Overall, the Japan in Melbourne team really enjoyed the film.


Next, I managed to catch ‘Wolf Girl & Black Prince’, a romance film well suited to teenage audiences. The film reminded me of the Japanese television dramas I used to watch in my high school days and was quite an adorable film.

Soon after, one of our other staff members, Sayu, had the pleasure of interviewing Director Yukiko Mishima regarding her film ‘Night’s Tightrope’. You can read the full interview here:

Interview with Yukiko Mishima, “Night’s Tightrope”

Then I was also lucky enough to be able to interview Director Miwa Nishikawa regarding her film ‘The Long Excuse’, which I hope to see on Sunday! You can read the full interview here:

‘The Long Excuse’ – Interview with Director Miwa Nishikawa

I hope you enjoyed the Japanese Film Festival in Melbourne as much as we did! I missed so many of the films, but I guess I’ll wait with excitement for them to come out on DVD and Blu-Ray eventually. What films did you see, or want to see? Let us know what you thought of the festival! We would love to hear your thoughts!

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