Yeah, I know I’m late (and still playing catch-up). I could have had this Trailer Weekly ready in time, but I really wanted the posts on the Year of 12 Directors  and the Ai to Makoto review done before 2012 was out.

  • かしこい狗は、吠えずに笑う」 (Kashkoi Inu wa Hoezuni Warau/Shady, Japan, 2012)dir. by Watanabe Ryohei. This is going to be one of those rare entries in the Trailer Weekly that doesn’t actually include a trailer. (Found one!!!) It’s just that I want this film, which I got interested in thanks to this post over at Wildgrounds, down on my to-watch list already. Adam Torel (of Third Window Films) calls it his “stand-out find of the year”, writing the following: “[I]t’s very rare that I find a film that I know absolutely nothing about, from a director I’ve never heard of, and am totally blown away by”. He compares it to カケラ (Kakera/Kakera: A Piece of our Life, Japan, 2009), but with a focus on bullying. Again, it’s a friendship between two females that’s at the heart of the film, except that the seemingly confident and angelic new-found friend “become[s] something oh so different” (quoting Adam again) half-way through the film. Well, that could be horror, but somehow I think not. Note: I couldn’t find a poster.
  • この空の花 長岡花火物語」 (Kono Sora no Hana: Nagaoka Hanabi Monogatari/Casting Blossoms to the Sky, 2012) – dir. by Obayashi Nobuhiko. I’m mesmerised. No, actually, I should start with a thank you to the people over at Wildgrounds, because I’m really digging the “Best of 2012” series of posts with guest bloggers sharing their top 2012 film. This recommendation comes from subtitler Don Brown (Twitter ID @Ryuganji) and although he warns that it “clocks in at a daunting 160 minutes, and its pace is unflaggingly ferocious”, I’m so intrigued! I don’t know why, just something in that trailer speaks to me that makes me really want to a) see this film and b) check out Obayashi’s other works. I have a feeling Kono Sora no Hana will be hard to track down though. :-/
  • 복숭아나무 (Boksoongah Namoo/The Peach Tree, South Korea, 2012) – A random find. I read this article about Ku Hye-sun, which is the sort of thing I normally quickly dismiss, but, hmm, I don’t know, somehow I got interested. It might be a dud – the story is pretty simply: a pair of Siamese twins falls in love with the same woman. I think the film poster is as boring as it gets. Honestly, it’s not the difficult to create a poster that’s at least a wee bit interesting.
  • リリイ・シュシュのすべて」 (Rirī Shushu no Subete/All about Lily Chou Chou, 2001) – Dir. by Iwai Shunji. I have featured a number of Iwai films already (see Trailer Weeklies #59 and #63) This one came up in a discussion on this blog some time ago,   with Genkina Hito commenting that it left him devastated. I haven’t watched anything by Iwai yet, I just have this gut feeling that I will really dig his films (even if  at the risk of feeling emotionally shattered at the end too).
  • Aurora (Vanishing Waves, Lithuania, 2012) – Dir. by Kristina Buožytė. Here’s a wildcard from Lithuania. It popped up on Twitter, as someone’s top film of 2012. Then I googled it and found rave reviews, but also people commenting on YouTube that it was just someone’s excuse to put an orgy on the screen. That was a little off-putting, but the reviews really convince me. The story is about Lukas, a member of a research team, who becomes a test subject for a new technology that allows access to another person’s thoughts. In the experiment Lukas enters the mind of a female, comatose patient, where he encounters the woman and soon finds himself drawn to her – also sexually – and into her world. The film is several things at once: “science fiction… mystery… psychosexual drama” and “a love story”. It’s not really “surreal, although it’s certainly a bit of a trip” and often rather “dreamlike” (all quotes from here). I can’t help but be intrigued.
  • The Art of Spiegelman (USA, 2009) – Did you read Maus? I did, back in 2009 when I visited Boston, MA, during one Easter break and found the Pulitzer Prize winning graphic novel on the Holocaust that made Nazis into cats, Jews into mice and ethnic Poles into pigs on a friend’s book shelves. I went it through in one night. This is the documentary that was made about the book’s author, Art Spiegelman.