Andre Hayato Saito’s latest short, “Amarela,” centers on a 14-year-old Japanese Brazilian girl (Melissa Uehara).
CULTURE / Film
May 21, 2024
Cannes nominee on being 'too Brazilian to be Japanese, too Japanese to be Brazilian’
Andre Hayato Saito's Palme d’Or-nominated short film, “Amarela,” is rooted in the director's own experiences with searching for a sense of belonging.
A trio of childhood friends (from left: Ryota Bando, Naoya Shimizu and Rion Takahashi) wonder about their future in Ryutaro Ninomiya’s “Wakamusha.”
CULTURE / Film
May 16, 2024
‘Wakamusha’: An austere portrait of toxic masculinity
Ryutaro Ninomiya shows a deft touch in his uncomfortable drama about childhood friends struggling to find their place in the adult world.
A gawky high school senior (Hsu Kuang-han, right) falls for an older colleague (Kaya Kiyohara) who gives him life advice in “18×2 Beyond Youthful Days.”
CULTURE / Film
May 16, 2024
‘18×2 Beyond Youthful Days’: Formulaic tearjerker hits the road for true love
Though the leads lack chemistry, they nonetheless earn kudos for their performances in Michihito Fujii’s Japan-Taiwan co-production.
An ambitious high school freshman recruits three girls from her region to create an “idol” group from scratch in “Trapezium.”
CULTURE / Film
May 9, 2024
‘Trapezium’: Being an idol isn’t always a dream come true
The anime adaptation of a book by Kazumi Takayama, a former member of Nogizaka46, offers an authentic look at the pressures of show business.
A skeptical reporter (Yukichi Tanaka, right) about the existence of extraterrestrials travels to a self-proclaimed UFO city for a story in “Alien’s Daydream.”
CULTURE / Film
May 9, 2024
'Alien’s Daydream': Micro budget film delivers fresh takes
Yoshiki Matsumoto’s debut feature is an ambitious, multilayered essay on the UFO phenomenon with tongue firmly in cheek.
Four girls congregate at an empty swimming pool at their high school and discuss their lives in “Swimming in a Sand Pool.”
CULTURE / Film
May 2, 2024
‘Swimming in a Sand Pool’ takes rare dive into gender issues
Nobuhiro Yamashita draws appealingly natural performances from his cast of newcomers in the film adaptation of an award-winning play.
Ryohei Suzuki is plays assassin and detective Ryo Saeba in a new live-action "City Hunter" remake from Netflix.
CULTURE / Film
Apr 25, 2024
'City Hunter' manga hero drops the sexism for new live-action film
Lead actor Ryohei Suzuki says production had to strike a balance between his character's reputation and modern sensibilities.

Longform

Things may look perfect to the outside world, but today's mom is fine with some imperfection at home.
How 'Reiwa moms' are reshaping motherhood in Japan