NEW ASIA & PACIFIC FILM FESTIVAL PROGRAMME ANNOUNCED
LAUNCHING IN LONDON ON JUNE 29; TOURING THE UK IN SUMMER/AUTUMN 2018
Aperture: Asia & Pacific Film Festival is a new UK-wide film festival dedicated to screening some of the boldest, most daring, challenging, and striking films from Asia and the Pacific. Focusing particularly on underrepresented cinemas, from Azerbaijan to Vanuatu and everything in between, the festival aims to open windows on worlds whose landscapes and peoples remain largely absent from UK screens. Aperture is the only festival in the UK currently with a remit that specifically covers the whole of Asia and the Pacific.
For this first edition of the festival, key areas of focus include films from Central Asia, the Himalayas, Southeast Asia, New Zealand and Pacific Islands. The programme comprises 12 features, including four UK premieres and four London premieres, and 17 short films.
Key themes within the festival programme include migration and displaced peoples, social justice, and female empowerment. Over half of the festival programme comprises films made by women including shorts programme “Women in the Frame” and the first film by a female filmmaker in the post-Taliban era A Letter to the President.
The festival is co-founded by Sonali Joshi and Jasper Sharp and directed by Sonali Joshi. Presented in partnership with CREAM, University of Westminster, the festival is supported by Purin Pictures.
Aperture/London Part 1 runs from 29 June-8 July at Close-Up Cinema, The Cinema Museum, The Lexi Cinema and The Horse Hospital.
Aperture/London Part 2 will take place in the second half of September, comprising a Southeast Asian focus and a one-day symposium hosted by CREAM, University of Westminster.
Aperture: Asia & Pacific Film Festival returns to London in September with the second part of this year’s programme with a focus on Southeast Asia (15-27 Sep), kindly supported by Purin Pictures, and a focus on New Zealand (29-30 Sep), kindly supported by the New Zealand High Commission.
The festival is supported by CREAM, Centre for Research and Education in Arts and Media, University of Westminster.
Related non-festival events happening in September include joint UK premiere of next day for night* title NERVOUS TRANSLATION by Shireen Seno at Tate Modern and Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival, and YEARS WHEN I WAS A CHILD OUTSIDE by John Torres hosted by Close-Up Cinema.
More announcements on special events and NZ focus coming very shortly!
Aperture is jointly presenting some events with other festivals, including Masala Festival in Newcastle at Tyneside Cinema on 21 July, and Chinese Visual Festival in September.
JAEFF reveals this year’s exceptional line-up!
From Friday 21 September until Sunday 23 September, JAEFF will be screening 5 classic feature-length films paired with 4 outstanding contemporary shorts rarely screened in the UK.
Join us for a weekend of discovery, as we focus on themes of youth and protest in Japanese cinema from the 1960s and 70s new wave period to today.
Tickets are now on sale!
Do not miss the opportunity to attend our screenings as well as our free admission panel discussion with world renowned experts in Japanese cinema including film historians, academics, and curators!
Friday 21 September 2018 – 6.45pm – King’s College, Lucas Lecture Theatre (Strand Campus)
Opening night gala is an exclusive screening of Ko Nakihara’s feature debut Crazed Fruit – one of the first Japanese New Wave films and a fitting tribute to the recent passing of acting legend Masahiko Tsugawa.
This film will be paired with a short experimental piece, Your Voice Came Out Through My Throat, by award winning artist Yamashiro Chikako.
Saturday 22 September 2018 – 6pm – Close-Up Film Centre
Forest of Oppression with extended introduction
+ video clips
Japan, 1967, Dir Ogawa Shinsuke, Documentary, 105min.
Shinsuke Ogawa’s astonishing documentary takes the audience behind the barricades and into the heat of running battles with riot police in this chronicle of the student occupation movement in 1967 Japan at the Takasaki City University of Economics.
Perhaps the greatest chronicler of the student movement in Japan, Ogawa would live among his subjects, his camera moving among them. This raw and immediate filmmaking style presents a grounds-eye view of the struggle, often capturing clashes with riot police in the thick of the action.
The boundary between filmmaker and subject is increasingly eroded, mirroring Ogawa’s unwavering faith of the power of collective action and living – the Ogawa Pro filming collective itself was run on socialist principles, with members voting of production decisions.
Forest of Oppression will be introduced by Ricardo Matos Cabo, an independent film programmer and researcher, who will give a short illustrated presentation about the first collective films made by Ogawa Shinsuke and talk about the student movement in Japan in the 1960s.
Saturday 22 September 2018 – 8.30pm – Close-Up Film Centre
Dir. UMMMI., 9 min,
Nagisa Oshima weaves a tale of ideological book thievery, situationist performance, fantasy Noh theatre productions, sexual revolution, and personal liberation in this Art Theatre Guild (ATG) classic.Diary of a Shinjuku Thief was heavily influenced by the post-Shingeki theatre movement, whose main practitioners were Juro Kara and Shūji Terayama. Rejecting the long modern trajectory toward “realist” theatre, these playwrights turned toward premodern theatrical forms, including Noh, Kabuki, and Bunraku. Much like Masahiro Shinoda’s Double Suicide, this film questions the relationship between reality and art, sending the protagonists into plays-within-a-film and featuring actual people as themselves in ad-libbed scenes. Shinjuku was a major center for the art-theatre scene in the late 1960s, and several settings remain largely unchanged today, including Kinokuniya and the plaza outside the east exit of the station.
Diary of a Shinjuku Thief is paired here with UMMMI.’s Desktop Treasure, a film which attempts to go beyond borders through mixing up personal areas of the Internet by bringing out online and analogue records, personal spaces lived in by the actor, old blogs and e-mail log in screens, and mixed video footages of various qualities.
Sunday 23 September 2018- 2pm – Barbican Cinema 3
Panel Discussion – The Tremors of the Japanese New Wave
A special discussion event in support of the Japanese Avant-garde and Experimental Film Festival’s programme of youth orientated films from the new wave period of the 1960s and 70s.
This free admission panel event will bring together world renowned experts in Japanese cinema including film historians, academics, and curators. Following the festival themes of youth and protest, they will address questions surrounding of the legacy of the cultural and social upheaval in Japan in the 1960s and the thematic and stylistic influences from the Japanese avant-garde.
Given the current cinematic climate, the question of gender representation in cinema is more prescient than ever. The panel will elucidate on the male dominated Japanese New Wave and discuss how filmmaking in Japan might, or might not, be diversifying. A factor that is reflected in this year’s JAEFF line-up.
Free admission, booking essential.
Sunday 23 September 2018- 4pm – Barbican Cinema 3
Susumu Hani blurs the line between fiction and documentary in his feature film debut. Bad Boys depicts the disaffected lives of “sun tribe” delinquents (similar to US “greasers”). Filmed in a dispassionate cinema-vérité style, Bad Boys chronicles the militaristic daily routines of reform school life with little sense of release or salvation (both for inmates and audience). Relief from the grind is found through occasional triumphs of collective action, which point to Hani’s Marxist credentials, and in avant-garde musical pioneer Tōru Takemitsu’s aching score.Bad Boys is paired here with Kioto Aoki’s Studio Sunrise: a reflected self-portrait imitating movements of the sun.
Special thanks to Iwanami Audio-Visual Media Inc. for facilitating this showing of Bad Boys, and to the Japan Foundation for the 35mm print.
Transgender actor Pîtâ gives an astonishing performance as Eddie, hostess at Bar Genet – where she’s ignited a violent love-triangle with reigning drag queen Leda for the attentions of club owner Gonda. One of Japan’s leading experimental filmmakers, Matsumoto bends and distorts time, and freely mixes documentary interviews, Brechtian film-within-a-film asides, Oedipal premonitions of disaster, his own avant-garde shorts, and even on-screen cartoon balloons. Funeral Parade of Roses is a celebration of youth and subcultures, a condemnation of intolerance, and a one-of-kind cinematic experience.This key work of queer cinema screens in a new 4K digital restoration and is paired with Looking for Jiro, a performance video by artist Tina Takemoto inspired by the real-life case of a gay Japanese immigrant interned in the US during WWII.