Now Showing June 30

Sin Nombre, Castaway on the Moon and other listings

Now Showing June 30

‘Sin Nombre’

The Sundance Film Festival began in 1978 and has become the premier event for showcasing the talent of new American directors. It kick-started the careers of many of the leading directors in Hollywood today, including the Coen brothers, Quentin Tarantino and Steven Soderbergh; last year’s festival uncovered yet another impressive talent. At the tender age of 32, Japanese-American director Cary Joji Fukunaga’s road movie ‘Sin Nombre’ received both the Directing Award and the Excellence in Cinematography Award in the dramatic category of the competition.

The film revolves around the plight of a young Honduran girl Sayra who is trying to reach America with her father in search of a better life. On the roof of a train crowded with other illegal immigrants she meets the Mexican teenager El Casper. Casper is a member of a gang that preys on the immigrants, but to save Sayra from them he ends up killing their leader. Casper, on the run and pursued as a traitor, and Sayra, trusting and beginning to fall in love with the man who saved her life, desperately try to evade the authorities and reach the border...

Sin Nombre has gained a lot of public attention, with even popular actors Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna falling in love with the project and becoming involved in its production. Fukunaga has said what he really wanted to convey in the film was the story of the people who try to reach the border despite the terrible risks involved. The people who are usually associated with trying to cross the border into America are immigrants from neighbouring Mexico. But this film’s lead characters come from Honduras, a country much further south and much further away, so they have to cross the borders of many other countries, such as Guatemala and Mexico, before they can reach the destination they dream of. To fully explore his theme of immigration, Fukunaga interviewed immigrants living in shelters and gang members in prison. He even traced the path that the immigrants take and rode on the top of the trains himself, experiencing the trip three times. This real-life research helped him to make a truly shocking and deeply moving work. Seeing the strength that all of the leading characters possess also inspires a sense of courage to face whatever lies ahead in anyone who views the film.

Sin Nombre

Mexico, 2009
Japanese title: Yami no Ressha, Hikari no Tabi
Opened: June 19
Director: Cary Joji Fukunaga
Cast: Paulina Gaitan, Edgar Flores
Distributor: Nikkatsu

Furusato: World Heritage Sites Viewed From Space

Kundo Koyama is the screenwriter who wrote ‘Departures’, which won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film at the 81st Academy Awards in 2009. ‘Furusato’ takes an original story by Koyama and brings it to life with amazing and moving 3D images of numerous World Heritage Sites.

Japan, 2010
Japanese title: Furusato: Uchu kara Mita Sekai Isan
Opened: June 19
Director: Hiromi Kusaka
Cast: Kyara Uchida, Matt Rayward, Yousiff Wael
Distributor: TBS Vision

Halloween II

There is no greater representative of the splatter film than the ‘Halloween’ series. This instalment is the sequel to the 2007 remake of Halloween, made by the king of heavy metal Rob Zombie.

USA, 2009
Opened: June 19
Director: Rob Zombie
Cast: Scout Taylor-Compton, Tyler Mane, Malcolm McDowell
Distributor: Showgate

Castaway on the Moon

This is the story of a man whose attempt at suicide by jumping into a river ends up with him being washed up on a deserted island. A series of strange events and coincidences leads a girl who hasn’t been out of her room in years to discover him, and an unusual love story unfolds.

Korea, 2009
Japanese title: Kare to Watshi no Hyoryu Nikki
Opened: June 19
Director: Hae-jun Lee
Cast: Jae-yeon Jeong, Ryeo-won Jeong
Distributor: CJ Entertainment Japan

The Spy Next Door

This film marks the thirtieth anniversary of Hong Kong superstar Jackie Chan’s Hollywood debut. It’s an action comedy about a spy who decides to use his upcoming marriage as a good chance to give up his dangerous career. But a prank by one his future step-children draws them all into a terrible conspiracy.

USA, 2010
Japanese title: Double Mission
Opened: June 19
Director: Brian Levant
Cast: Jackie Chan, Amber Valetta, Madeline Carroll
Distributor: Showgate

By Misawo Kasuya
Translated by Virginia Okno
Please note: All information is correct at the time of writing but is subject to change without notice.


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