Many are the Japanese films themed on food, families and funerals. Rare is the one that, like Shiro Tokiwa’s “The First Supper,” combines all three.
Scripted by Tokiwa, a prolific maker of TV commercials, music videos and shorts, the film may look like a play for a box-office trifecta. But, in his feature debut, Tokiwa rejects the saccharine, weepy local commercial norm while reaching back to an earlier, more naturalistic style of Japanese filmmaking. Veteran cinematographer Hideo Yamamoto, who has worked with Takashi Miike, even uses the low-angle interior shots that were a trademark of 1950s “Golden Age” master Yasujiro Ozu.