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Japanese Film Festival at Riverwalk

The Embassy of Japan in Botswana will host its sixth Film Festival from November 27 to November 30, at the New Capitol Cinema, Riverwalk Mall.

The festival will feature four Japanese films, Fly Dakota Fly, Leaving on the 15th Spring, Akko-Chan; the Movie, and Always-Sunset on Third Street ’64. Embassy of Japan in Botswana Second Secretary, Asami Nakabai, told Arts & Culture that the film festival is a way of fostering cultural exchange in an entertaining way.

She said Japan and Botswana enjoy a good relationship in a variety of areas, explaining that it is important to nurture the relationship, and important for the two nations to be knowledgeable on each other’s cultures.

Nakabai said films in a nutshell could be instrumental in showing certain aspects of a nation’s way of life. “By watching the films, one can easily learn a lot about people of a different nationality like word selection, and how people express themselves,” she said. Different nations have different ways of expression, as well as interpersonal interactions.  What is polite to some nations might be offensive in other cultures.  While films may not necessarily be the official way of learning about a particular nation’s culture, traditions, and values, it can give a bit of insight into the gesticulation of a certain group of people.

Nakabi explained that the film festival would feature films from the era just after World War II until modern times.  She explained that while the festival does not necessarily have a theme, the films celebrate women and show women’s vitality.  All films will be free to the public, and it will be on a first come first serve basis. Japan Foundation supports the film festival, which is the one providing the embassy with the films.

Films synopsis:

Fly Dakota Fly, is a drama film directed by Seiji Aburatani is 1 hour 49 minutes. The film is based on a true story. The story line takes place in January of 1946 when a British military transport plane is forced to make an emergency landing on

the Island of Sado. The Japanese locals and the British pilots and soldiers put aside their hatred in order to save the crashed plane. Fly Dakota Fly will be screened November 27 at 6:00 pm at the New Capitol Cinema, Riverwalk.

Leaving on the 15th Spring

Yuna lives on a remote island in Okinawa, 360 kilometres from the mainland. There is no high school on the island, which means that every teenager must leave in the spring of the year they turn 15 to attend school on the mainland. It is Yuna’s turn to leave this year, and as leader of her school’s traditional musical group, she is preparing to sing the customary farewell song expressing gratitude to the island and her family. But in reality, Yuna’s family is far from ideal; with everyone living separately for reasons she doesn’t completely understand. The 114 minutes film is directed by Yasuhiro Yoshida, and produced by Masaoka Yasuhiro, Hiroshi Higa, Takeshi Sawa. The movie will be screened on November 28 at 5:15 pm at the New Capitol Cinema, Riverwalk.

Akko-Chan; the Movie is about a young elementary school girl called Akko-chan who received a magical compact mirror that allows her to transform into anything she wishes. Akko-chan transforms herself into a 22-year-old adult woman in order to protect her crush and first love. She helps a compassionate but despairingly frustrated boss to save a company. Yasuhiro Kawamura directed the 120-minute long movie. It will be screened on November 29 at 2:15 pm at the New Capitol Cinema, Riverwalk.

Always - Sunset on Third Street’64

Directed by Takashi Yamazaki, the comedy drama is set in Tokyo in 1964 where the Olympics are set to take place. The inhabitants of Third Street live amidst all the change in their usual optimistic ways. The film will be screened at 2:15 pm on November 30 at New Capitol Cinema, Riverwalk.




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