Japan Society Film

Japan Society Film


Screening Japanese cinema from classics to contemporary premieres in NYC. Organizers of JAPAN CUTS: Festival of New Japanese Film since 2007. Films streaming at film.japansociety.org


JAPAN CUTS ends today!

Today's the final day of this year's JAPAN CUTS! Films are still available to rent (with a 3-day watch window) through midnight at film.japansociety.org! Thank you all for watching and we hope that you've enjoyed this year's festival!

JAPAN CUTS 2021 kicks off today!

All 33 films in our JAPAN CUTS virtual lineup are now available to stream at film.japansociety.org! We'll also be kicking off the festival later today with in-person screenings! In-person tickets on sale here!

JAPAN CUTS All-Access Passes now on sale!

All-Access Passes now on sale for JAPAN CUTS 2021! Catch the entire online slate of 21 features and 12 shorts—including studio favorites, independent productions, documentaries, restored classics, animation and avant-garde works—for just $69!

JAPAN CUTS 2021 returns Aug 20th for Online and In-Person Screenings!

North America’s largest festival of contemporary Japanese cinema returns for its 15th edition as an online and in-person hybrid event! Following last year's entirely online edition, this summer’s festival offers 14 days of unique access to 38 dynamic new films from Japan for audiences across the United States—including studio films, independent gems, documentaries, shorts, avant-garde works and more—through Japan Society’s virtual cinema.

Recent reviews

New York Premiere. The final film by Nobuhiko Obayashi finds the late director returning to the subject of Japan’s history of warfare following the completion of his “War Trilogy,” which ended with Hanagatami (JC 2018). On the last night of its existence, a small movie theater in Onomichi—the seaside town of Obayashi’s youth where he shot nearly a dozen films—screens an all-night marathon of Japanese war films. When lightning strikes the theater, three young men are transported into the world…

International Premiere. Amid a power struggle within major publishing company Kunpu, cocky industry operator Akira (Yo Oizumi) gets assigned to lead its failing culture magazine Trinity as editor-in-chief. Enlisting the help of earnest rookie editor Megumi (Mayu Matsuoka), Akira attempts to revitalize Trinity by securing the commitment of a celebrated author, breaking out new literary talent and taking risks—all of which are backed by a new CEO (Koichi Sato) who has his own ideas about Kunpu’s future. Meanwhile, Megumi tries…

U.S. Premiere. In cult director Takashi Miike’s long-awaited return to the phantasmagorical realm of yokai, a vengeful mass of sea spirits arise in the Nagano region of Japan and transform into Yokaiju, a destructive force of nature that leaves nothing but calamity and devastation in its wake. Hoping to prevent the unstoppable Yokaiju from reaching Tokyo (and thus breaking a spiritual barrier that staves off the revival of a nameless evil), the yokai summon the long-forgotten descendent of legendary samurai…

New York Premiere. Satoko Fukuhara (Yu Aoi) lives with her import/export businessman husband Yusaku (Takahashi Issey) in the port city of Kobe, with Japan on the precipice of entering WWII with Axis powers Germany and Italy in 1940. Their pleasant cosmopolitan life constricted by rising militarism, the couple is surveilled by Satoko’s admiring childhood friend who is now a steely military police officer (Masahiro Higashide). When Yusaku makes a trip to Manchuria where he witnesses colonial violence firsthand, and the…

Liked reviews

Master filmmaker Kiyoshi Kurosawa (Pulse, Cure, Tokyo Sonata) won the Silver Lion (Best Director) at the Venice Film Festival for this riveting, gorgeously crafted, old-school Hitchockian thriller shot in stunning 8K. The year is 1940 in Kobe, on the eve of the outbreak of World War II. Local merchant and amateur filmmaker Yusaku (Issey Takahashi, Kill Bill) senses that things are headed in an unsettling direction. Following a trip to Manchuria, he becomes determined to bring to light the things…

The most amazing sports cinematography I've ever seen. Sound design is fantastic as well! Ichikawa actually makes baseball interesting.

Notes later.

Unpopular opinion maybe, but I prefer this to Tokyo Olympiad, and mind, I don't even particularly like baseball.
The first part is among the best examples of cinema I've seen this year: beautiful photography, really stunning, by Uematsu Eikichi (a cinematographer for Kamei Fumio's Record of Blood: Sunagawa, among other works), fast-paced editing like in an action movie, incredible popping colours, a moody music, inventive camera angles, a clever sound design, different landscapes of Japan, and above all, it touches…

Sion Sono has lived many lives behind the camera. After several relentless decades spent churning out softcore pornos, demented J-horror classics, furious confrontations with post-Fukushima Japan, a hyper-violent rap opera about masculine fragility, one of the most unflinching serial killer dramas since “Vengeance Is Mine,” a four-hour epic about upskirt photographers (and death cults), an Amazon miniseries called “Tokyo Vampire Hotel,” and a few dozen other films that defy such easy description, the only thing less surprising than the massive…