Covering a film festival is what’s known in the profession as a crapshoot. No matter how many screenings you manage to clock, you’re probably going to miss half of the flicks that end up winning prizes.

For casual moviegoers attempting to navigate Tokyo International Film Festival, it’s harder still. Top-tier directors tend to take their work elsewhere — not least to the other TIFF, held in Toronto in September — so many of the movies on offer are basically unknown quantities.

Unable to view this article?

This could be due to a conflict with your ad-blocking or security software.

Please add japantimes.co.jp and piano.io to your list of allowed sites.

If this does not resolve the issue or you are unable to add the domains to your allowlist, please see out this support page.

We humbly apologize for the inconvenience.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.