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june 2013 events 2

I’m not quite ready to be back yet (still busy marking exams)… but I thought some of you might appreciate not having to wait too long for the monthly Events post.

So, what’s on offer this June for South East Asian film fans in the UK? We have got「009 Re: Cyborg」screenings in Edinburgh, Liverpool and elsewhere, a Jackie Chan film in Derby as well as a fabulous Imamura Shohei Retrospective at the Sheffield Doc/Fest, but for the rest it’s all happening in London Update 7/6/2013: Not quite. I totally blanked on the Edinburgh International Film Festival – so there is loads outside of London as well! Anyhow, it’s a month of festivals and celebrations to commemorate a number of anniversaries.

We start with Seasons in the Sun: The Heyday of Nikkatsu Studios, one of the calendar highlights at the British Film Institute in June. The Terracotta Film Festival is about to kick off and promises to be bigger and better than ever with 27 films (and plenty more) from all over East Asia in store for cinephiles. June is also a good month for Studio Ghibli fans as multiple screenings are scheduled for two animations that were first released 25 years ago, plus another Double Bill at the Prince Charles. I’m also looking forward to「長州ファイブ」 (Chosyu Faibu/Choshu Five), an anniversary screening organised by the Japanese Embassy that commemorates an event from 150 years ago and I’m super-thrilled that a rare indie gem,「はなればなれに」(Hanarebanareni/Kuro), has popped up on the East End Film Festival programme. So we are really not short on choice this month, heck, it almost feels like October, which is normally the height of the film festival season in London town. Anyhow, peruse what’s on and, if you are not in the capital, it might be a good time for a visit!

Last updated: 24/6/2013


Chinese Visual Arts Festival, London, UK (May 8-June 12, 2013)cn

The Chinese Visual Arts Festival continues into June. The programme includes a good number of films (primarily documentaries, but also other productions). There is simply too much to list here, so hop over to the official festival website.

Seasons in the Sun: The Heyday of Nikkatsu Studios, BFI, London, UK (June 1-30, 2013) 

Curated by Jasper Sharp, the BFI is putting on films from the Nikkatsu Studios for the entire month of June. Again, there is too much to list, but you can find the full details here.

Do also read Jasper’s Sight and Sound article “Second Youth: The Golden Age of Nikkatsu Studios” here.

Studio Ghibli 25 Year Anniversary:「となりのトトロ」 (Tonari no Totoro/My Neighbor Totoro, 1988) and 「火垂るの墓」(Hotaru no Haka/Grave of the Fireflies, Japan, 1988), Prince Charles Cinema, London, UK (June 4-13/14, 2013) 

It has been quarter of a century since Miyazaki Hayao’s Tonari no Totoro and Takahata Isao’s Hotaru no Haka were first released in Japanese cinemas. You can watch both all month long at the Prince Charles Cinema (with one extra day for Hotaru no Haka on June 14). Note that there’s also a Hotaru no Haka screening at the BFI (see below). Bring along tissues for Takahata’s film, you’ll need them!

Booking here (Totoro) and here (Hotaru no Haka).

Terracotta Film Festival, Prince Charles Cinema and ICA, London, UK (June 6-15, 2013) thhkcntwid

Guess what I'm looking forward to seeing.

Guess what I can’t wait to see.

Obviously one of the highlights this month is the Terracotta Film Festival. Refer to my separate post on the event, with the complete line-up and synopses & trailers for all. There will be masterclasses and special guests – details to follow on the official website.


Terracotta treats: Kora Kengo (right) stars as Yonosuke. I forgot that Ayano Gou (left) has a supporting role in the film – his sweetly bumbling Sorai is currently delighting me in TBS’s「空飛ぶ広報室」(Soratobu Kouhoushitsu) dorama.

Women on Screen Season, KCCUK, London, UK (June 6 and 20, 2013) 


Heavy burdens: Yollyomun.

  • June 6: 열녀문 (Yollyomun/Bound by Chastity Rule, South Korea, 1962) – Dir. by Sin Sang-ok.
  • June 20: 귀로 (Gwiro/Homebound, South Korea, 1967) – Dir. by Lee Man-hee.

More information here.

「009 Re: Cyborg」(Japan, 2012), UK cinema release (June 7, 2013 onward) 

Dir. by Kamiyama Kenji.「009 Re: Cyborg」is getting a cinematic release via Anime Limited. Among other places, there will be several screenings at the Filmhouse in Edinburgh. I hear it’s also in on in Liverpool and surely some London cinemas will be screening it too.

Sheffield Doc/Fest, Sheffield, UK (June 12-16, 2013) 

There is an Imamura Shohei Retrospective at Sheffield Doc/Fest:

  • June 13: 「人間蒸発」 (Ningen jōhatsu/A Man Vanishes, Japan, 1967)
  • June 14: 「未帰還兵を追って~第一部 マレー篇」 (Mikahei o Otte/In Search of the Unreturned Soldiers in Malaysia, Japan, 1971)
  • June 14: 「未帰還兵を追って~第二部 タイ篇」 (Mikahei o Otta N°2/In Search of the Unreturned Soldiers in Thailand, Japan, 1971)
  • June 15: 「唐行きさん」 (Karayukisan/Karayuki-san, the Making of a Prostitute, Japan, 1973)

Read more about Imamura here.

There’s also this Canadian-produced, both North Korean themed web documentary (containing real footage as well as animation):

  • June 12-16: The Defector: Escape from North Korea (Canada, 2012). Dir. by Ann Shin. The documentary can be viewed, free of charge, in the Cross Over Lounge between throughout the Doc/Fest. More here.

Update 7/6/2013 Year of 4 Actors, Korean Film Night, KCCUK, London, UK (June 13 and 27, 2013) 

No details as of yet. Will update once they become available.

  • June 13: 밀양 (Milyang/Secret Sunshine, 2007) – Dir. by Chang Dong-lee. I feature this one a gazillion years ago on Trailer Weekly #17. Can’t wait to finally see it!
  • June 27: TBA.

醉拳》(Zuì Quán/Drunken Master, Hong Kong, 1978), Derby, UK (June 14, 2013) hk

The Derby Quad is screening a Jackie Chan film mid-month. Book here.

「火垂るの墓」 (Hotaru no Haka/Grave of the Fireflies, Japan, 1988) Grave of the Fireflies, BFI, London, UK (June 15, 2013) 

Dir. by Takahata Isao.

As part of a the Yoko Ono’s Meltdown season, Studio Ghibli’s most heartwrenching tale, Hotaru no Haka is having a one-off screening at the BFI, just in case you missed it at the Prince Charles Cinema.

「乱」 (Ran, Japan, 1985), BFI, London, UK (June 17 and 22, 2013 

Dir. by Kurosawa Akira.

Kurosawa’s “visionary adaptation of Shakespeare’s King Lear, transposed to feudal Japan” is being shown at the BFI. Book here.

Updated 7/5/2013 Edinburgh International Film Festival, Edinburgh, UK (June 19-30, 2013)  kpcnhk

The Edinburgh International Film Festival has Focus on Korea this year, so there are quite a few South Korean and one North Korean film on the list. Plus lots more. Too much to list here, so I wrote a separate post about it.

Updated 19/6/2013 피도 눈물도 없이 (Pido nunmuldo eobsi/No Blood, No Tears, South Korea, 2002), SOAS, London, UK (June 20, 2013)

Dir. by Ryoo Seung-wan. London Korean Links has all the details about this free screening.

Open City Docs Fest, London, UK (June 20-23, 2013) th

Two post-Tōhoku documentaries from Japan, plus a semi-docu from Thailand are on the programme of the Open City Docs Fest (“London’s global documentary festival”):

Check out the rest of the programme too, there’s plenty of interesting stuff from everywhere.

「ライク・サムワン・イン・ラブ」 (Raiku samuwan in rabu/Like Someone in Love, Japan, 2012), select UK cinemas (June 21, 2013 onwards) 

Sans titre - 5

Japan according to Kiarostami.

Dir. by Abbas Kiarostami.

June also sees a cinema release for Raiku samuwan in rabu via New Wave Films (home media release will follow later in the year). Cinemas include the BFI, among others. My REVIEW (8/10).

UPDATED 24/6/2013 크로싱 (Keulosing/Crossings, South Korea, 2008) and Q&A, Amnesty International UK, The Human Rights Action Centre, EC2A 3EA (June 24, 2013) 

Dir. by Kim Tae-gyun. Free screening of a film documenting the life of Kim Yong-soon, a North Korean footballer that defected to China. There with be a Q&A with Kim Joo-il, a North Korean army captain, who also defected. More information here.

長州ファイブ」 (Chosyu Faibu/Chosyu Five, Japan, 2006), Films at the Embassy of Japan, London, UK (June 25, 2013)  

長州ファイブ (Choshu Five)

Looking good.

Dir. by Igarashi Sho.

The Japanese Embassy is celebrating 150 years since the arrival of the “Chosyu Five”, a group of Japanese men who secretly fled their country during turbulent times to travel to the UK. Various events will be commemorating the anniversary this year, this film screening being one of them. Free, but must RSVP. Details here. Pleased to see that Matsuda Ryuhei has a starring role in this – about high time I tackle his filmography in earnest (plus, this doesn’t look like a film that is that is easy to get hold off).

Added 7/7/2013: REVIEW on Otherwhere (8.5/10)

East End Film Festival, East London, UK (June 25-July 10, 2013) 


Scenic vistas in tongue-twistery Hanarebanareni.

  • June 29, 2013:「はなればなれに」 (Hanarebanareni/Kuro, Japan, 2012) – I featured this one on Trailer Weekly #79+#80. It’s one of those indie productions that can be really hard to come by, so it’s a real stroke of luck to find it on the East End Festival Programme. See it at the Rich Mix (Bethnal Green). It’s a mini-cinema that seats only about 20 people and I can tell you that one of the tickets is already gone. 🙂
  • Note: another Japanese screening is programmed for July.
  • Official festival website.

Updated 19/6/2013 헨젤과 그레텔 (Henjelgwa Geuretel/Hansel and Gretel, South Korea, 2007), Terracotta Film Club, Prince Charles Cinema, London, UK  (26 June, 2013)

There’s a Terracotta Film Club screening this month after all and it caters to all ye fans of horrors. More here.

「ゲド戦記」 (Gedo senki/Tales of Earthsea, 2006) and「崖の上のポニョ」(Gake no Ue no Ponyo/Ponyo, 2008), Studio Ghibli Double Bill, Prince Charles Cinema, London, UK (June 29, 2013) 

The Prince Charles Cinema keeps serving up Studio Ghibli fare (with lots more to come in July, by the way). This month we get Gedo senki, Miyazaki Goro’s debut feature, as well as Gake no Ue no Ponyo, directed by Miyazaki senior. Book here.

Asian Movies Meet Up, Roxy Bar & Screen, SE1 1LB London, UK (TBA)

There will be no Asian Movies Meet Up in June. Check the Asian Meet Up page here for future events.


ai to makoto 10

Nothing better than having a legit excuse to include a Tsumabuki pic in a post.

  • June 10:「愛と誠」 (Ai to Makoto/For Love’s Sake, Japan, 2012) released on Blu-ray and DVD by Third Window Films. Musical comedy. Dir. by Miike Takashi. Stars Tsumabuki Satoshi and Takei Emi, among others. You can read my REVIEW (9/10) or just watch and be swept away by whacky awesomeness.
  • June 17: 「藪の中の黒猫」 (Yabu no Naka no Kuroneko/Kuroneko, Japan, 1968) – Dir. by Shindo Kaneto. DVD/Blu-ray release via Masters of Cinema.
  • June 17:  「裸の島」 (Hadaka no shima/Naked Island, Japan, 1960) – Dir. by Shindo Kaneto. Blu-ray upgrade via Masters of Cinema.


Whole Hog Theatre’s Princess Mononoke Stage AdaptationLondon, UK (June 16-29, 2013)gb

The Whole Hog Theatre is back in town after a triumphant run of their Princess Mononoke stage adaptation in Tokyo, Japan. Tickets are long sold out, but it’s probably worth checking on the day of performances for any returns. My REVIEW.

Director Talk: Atsushi Funahashi, Japan Foundation, London, UK (June 21, 2013) 

Free but must reserve by email (event@jpf.org.uk). You can get more information about the director and the focus of his talk also here.

A Readers’ Evening of Korean Literature, KCCUK, London, UK (June 28, 2013) 

From the KCCUK website:

The Korean Cultural Centre UK hosts a Readers’ Evening of Korean Literature and welcomes all those interested in Korean literature and culture. The Readers’ Evening of Korean Literature will discuss topics from ‘ Who Ate Up All the Shinga?’, an extraordinary account of the author’s experiences growing up during the Japanese occupation of Korea and the Korean War, a time of great oppression, deprivation, and social and political instability.

Reserve by June 6, 2013. Details here.

KCCUK Talk Tea Books


Nippon Connection, Frankfurt, Germany (June 4-9, 2013) 

Here’s something to make us all go green with envy: The Nippon Connection, which is pretty much Europe’s largest Japanese film event, just opened in Frankfurt. Seriously, I need to stop passing through that city (which has long been my most common transit point when travelling) and actually make it a destination for this event one day.*

*I think I’ve been in transit there some 30+ times but haven’t stepped one foot outside the airport there yet…