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Monday, September 05, 2016

Preview of Singapore Japanese Film Festival 2016


For those who are in Singapore this month, you may wish to check out the Singapore Japanese Film Festival 2016 taking place at the National Museum's Gallery Theatre. As per previous years, there is a mix of old and new films which are known as the retrospective and currents categories respectively. 

Usually, the films in the retrospective category can be viewed free-of-charge but the catch is that you have to queue up for tickets before the screening. If it happens to be a very popular film, you may not be able to watch it if all the tickets are taken up. On the other hand, the movies in the currents category usually need paid tickets so there's a higher chance of you getting to watch the movie you want but of course, that's still limited to the theatre's capacity and popularity of the movie. This year, there are some films in this category which don't need paid tickets such as オオカミ少女と黒王子 Ookami Shoujo to Kuro Ouji starring Nikaidou Fumi and Yamazaki Kento.

I have been attending this film festival almost every year but the number of films I watch each year is largely dependent on the selection. The films in the retrospective category tend not to interest me as much so I usually go for those in the currents category where there are some very new offerings. Last year, I watched "Watashi no Otoko" and the two parts of "Little Forest" where the latter were the first sold-out sessions I had attended. This year, I bought tickets to the following films:

Directed by Koreeda Hirokazu / Starring Abe Hiroshi, Maki Youko and Kiki Kirin

Directed by Sode Yukiko / Starring Kikuchi Akiko and Nakajima Ayumu

Directed by Kusano Shogo / Starring Kawaguchi Haruna and Hayashi Kento

Of these, the first film was shown in the first half of 2016 while the third will be shown in Japan from 10 September and I'll get to see it just a week later. The second film was shown last year. As such, this festival is one of the best chances to catch some new films instead of waiting for their commercial release in Singapore which might never happen.

If you are watching three or more films or you are going with friends, note that there is a 10 percent discount for three or more tickets bought.

If you are a regular attendee at this film festival, please share your thoughts about this and the films which you watched in the past and what you've watched this year. Looking forward to seeing your responses!

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