Justin’s Japan: Japan Society Serves Up Summer Film Festival

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By JQ magazine editor Justin Tedaldi (CIR Kobe-shi, 2001-02) for Shukan NY Seikatsu. Visit his Examiner.com Japanese culture page here for related stories.

Summer’s here, and that means a new season of JAPAN CUTS: The New York Festival of Contemporary Japanese Cinema, running at Japan Society from July 11-21.

Now in its seventh year, JAPAN CUTS offers 25 titles, all of which are a mix of New York, U.S. and International premieres. Highlights include the smash-hit samurai blockbuster Rurouni Kenshin, the multi-Japan Academy Prize-winning The Kirishima Thing, and the latest horror film from Takashi Miike, Lesson of the Evil.

“In contrast with the past few years, the selection of titles for JAPAN CUTS is much leaner, and more focused on art house productions and film oddities, though there is still a number of ‘mainstream’ crowd-pleasers in the lineup,” says Japan Society’s chief film programmer Samuel Jamier. “Rather than a ‘best-of’ list, this year’s crop brings a block of dark matter, and provides an unblinking look at the dark side of Japan.”

Co-presented with the New York Asian Film Festival (which itself is now in its 12th year), JAPAN CUTS has attracted over 30,000 filmgoers and presented over 150 feature films—many never before seen in the U.S.—as well as a number of panels, post-screening parties, and exclusive Q&As with filmmakers and actors. Past guests have included Koji Yakusho, Masami Nagasawa, and Sora Aoi.

For a complete listing of films and appearances, visit www.japansociety.org/japan-cuts-2013.