• SHARE

The title of Soushi Matsumoto’s feature debut, “It’s a Summer Film,” is somewhat misleading: Instead of enjoying her summer break at the beach, the film’s intense teenage protagonist (Marika Ito) is struggling to make her first film, a homage to the samurai sword fight epics she loves. Having premiered at last year’s Tokyo International Film Festival, it’s the latest of the many Japanese movies that depict the grind and glory of filmmaking.

Working from his co-written original script, Matsumoto stirs in various genres, from sci-fi to romance, served up with a gawky semi-comic sincerity, as though he is trying to stylistically channel his awkward adolescent self. The result made me cringe at times, but it was still hard to dislike. Maybe I just have a weakness for kids who heatedly debate the relative merits of period action stars Shintaro Katsu and Ichikawa Raizo.

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.

SUBSCRIBE NOW

PHOTO GALLERY (CLICK TO ENLARGE)