Call Number: PN1997 .T57 2006 In Japanese, Chinese, Korean
A bracing anthology of horror stories uniting three of East Asia's most compelling directors : Miike Takashi, Fruit Chan, and Park Chan-Wook. These three tales of horror explore the outer limits of the macabre by exploring "Three... Extremes." "Dumplings" is about Bai Ling who plays a specialist in preparing dumplings that promise to restore youth and health for her customers; the weird part is she also runs a suspicious clinic on her premises. "Cut," revolves around a self-centered director who gets trapped at his home (or is it the set of his new movie?) by a deranged former extra. "Box," takes its cues from traditional Japanese ghost stories and is about a young woman who is haunted by a family tragedy from her past.
In Koreeda's thought-provoking vision, the newly deceased find themselves in a way station somewhere between Heaven and Earth. With the help of dedicated caseworkers, each soul is given three days to choose one cherished memory for their life that they will relive for eternity. As the film reveals, recognizing happiness and finding a life's worth of meaning in a single event is no simple task.
A still-beautiful widow has a daughter who is sufficiently past the favored age for marriage to be in danger of becoming an old maid according to the norms of Japanese culture. Three mature men, friends of the family, get together to discuss the widow and her problem daughter. Despite the fact that they each would like to marry the mother, they agree that one of them should make the sacrifice of marrying the daughter. They discuss their marriage idea with the mother, not the daughter (as is customary). Somehow, the girl hears of it, and is infuriated. She has said all along that though she wants to get married someday, she wants to remain single for some time longer. Now she is angry enough to threaten to accept the family friend's suit simply out of spite.
Eight episodes exploring many aspects of humankind and man's need to harmonize with nature. Based on Akira Kurosawa's actual dreams. The first section centers on a young boy, who witnesses a forest wedding procession of fox spirits in spite of his mother's warning. The second section concerns the same boy who converses with peach-tree spirits after the trees have been cruelly cut down. This is followed by a party of mountain climbers struggling to make it back to base camp in the midst of a terrible blizzard. The fourth dream deals with a man who encounters ghosts of Japan's militaristic past in a forlorn tunnel. In the following dream, the same man ventures into a Van Gogh painting called "The Crows" and meets the artist himself. The sixth and seventh dreams venture into nightmare territory, one deals with a nuclear meltdown that threatens Japan while the other concerns post-nuclear mutants. In the final dream, Kurosawa meets a 103-year-old man in a utopian rural village.
Workaholic Tokyo salaryman Wada (Masashiro Motoki) ventures into deepest, darkest China to investigate a massive deposit of high-quality jade. Tailing him is Ujiie (Renji Ishibashi), a snarling yakuza hell-bent on getting Wada's company to repay its debts. Led by their unflappable guide, Shun (Mako), the two go through rural villages and striking landscapes, quickly leaving behind all signs of the 20th century. As the trail grows narrower and more remote and as they brave gales, bugs, and floods, the long simmering tension between Wada and Ujiie bursts into full-scale contempt. One night, after Shun gets blind drunk, he hits his head and loses his memory. Now completely lost, the trio stumbles upon a hill tribe, whose children are adorned with wings made from bamboo and paper. Their teacher, a blue-eyed woman named Yan (Li Li Wang), tells them that she is teaching them to fly. Wada quickly becomes obsessed with this curious local. After she tells him that she has a book on human-powered flight and that her grandfather was a downed British airman, he almost believes that she can teach her students to soar. Soon Wada feels purged from the evils of city life while Ujiie decides to dedicate his life to protecting the village.
Call Number: PN1997 .B547 2007 In Japanese & Burmese
An Imperial Japanese Army regiment surrenders to British forces in Burma at the close of World War II and finds harmony through song. A private, thought to be dead, disguises himself as a Buddhist monk and stumbles upon spiritual enlightenment.
Call Number: PL835.R5 S5 2008 In Japanese w/ English voiceover
In English and Japanese with English subtitles
The Book of the Dead takes place as Buddhism is being introduced to Japan from China. Iratsume, a woman of noble descent, becomes obsessed with this mysterious new religion. One night, in a rapturous trance, she sees a luminous vision that she believes to be the Buddha, compelling her to leave home and journey to a sacred temple. Once there, she sees Otsu, a young prince who was executed 50 years earlier. While Iratsume mistakes the prince's spirit for the incarnation of the great Buddha, the ghost mistakes Iratsume for the last woman he saw at the moment of his death. As an act of great devotion, she decides to make a giant shroud for the prince to heal his soul, after which he begins to haunt the young woman and those around her. The pair embark on an impassioned battle of wills, one longing for the material world, the other striving for the spiritual.
Yoko, a freelance writer, becomes pregnant and chooses, against tradition and her parents' wishes, to raise the baby alone. In her loneliness and confusion, Yoko befriends the owner of a second-hand bookstore, who silently falls in love with her as she contemplates the choice she has made.
Four siblings live happily with their mother in a small apartment in Tokyo. The children all have different fathers and have never been to school. The very existence of three of them has been hidden from the landlord. One day, the mother leaves behind a little money and a note, charging her oldest boy to look after the others. And so begins the children's odyssey, a journey nobody knows. A critically-acclaimed and powerful, heartfelt story about four children who are forced to rely on one another after they are abandoned by their mother.
Call Number: PL861.U92716 H6 2005 In japanese, dubbed in English
Yoshimi Matsubara fights to gain legal custody of her five year-old daughter Ikuko while the two live together in a dark, sullen and musty apartment building. Already insecure and uncertain about her future with her daughter, Yoshimi is haunted by murky water dripping through the ceiling and walls, and by the almost taunting appearances of a small red bag that once belonged to a girl who had mysteriously disappeared two years prior. Though she desperately struggles to find the strength within herself for Ikuko's sake, her horror intensifies as she comes closer to discovering the connection between these events, and is completely unprepared for the truth that lies ahead.
Dersu Uzala is the story of an elderly guide and Goldi hunter, who at the turn of the century, agrees to shepherd a Russian explorer and a troop of soldiers through the most treacherous passages of the Far East. The guide has been one with the land almost from birth, and is thus able to save his party from perishing.
This film follows the lives of the people who live in a slum, built in a garbage dump. A mentally disabled boy is obsessed with streetcars, driving an imaginary streetcar around, chanting "Dodes'ka-den! Dodes'ka-den!"--mimicking the sound of the wheels. Some of the neighbors are a young woman living with her lecherous uncle; a pair of friends who get drunk and swap wives; a possibly mentally ill beggar and his son who live in a deserted car; and a man with five children who knows he is not the father of any, but treats them as if they were his own. Although they may dream of better times, these people are trapped--both physically and psychologically--doomed to live a life of disappointment (or worse), but many find ways to carry on.
Call Number: PN1997.A1 E97857584 2008 In Japanese or French
Breaking of branches is forbidden: A monk orders a young acolyte, who has a fondness for sake, to guard a cherry tree.
Demon: Two brothers, living with their aged mother, go out into the forest to hunt. In the forest, a demon's arm attempts to overpower one of them. They cut off the arm and bring it home, only to find a more horrible fate at home.
Farce anthropo-cynique: A dog race is interrupted by a ringmaster who mistreats the animals. The crowd becomes incensed and the ringmaster runs for his life.
Trip: A young girl sets off on a surreal metaphysical voyage to the learn the pain and joy of life.
Poet's life: A worker fired from a factory for demanding higher wages is plagued by ghastly nightmares. Based on a story by Kobo Abe.
Dojoji Temple: On their way to worship at a Buddhist shrine, two monks stop over at the home of a young woman. Their hostess develops an all-consuming passion for the younger of the two, but he rejects her. When she finds that he has left, she follows him in the form of a serpent.
House of flames: On his way to the capital, a Buddhist monk stops over in a hamlet to ask the villagers the way to an ancient monument known as the Seeker's Mound. Though they cannot help him, he comes upon it by chance and meets the ghost of a young woman who, five centuries before, was loved by two men, a poet and a warrior. When they shot a paradise duck in order to prove their worth, she was overcome by guilt and drowned herself. As a result her suitors concluded a suicide pact and ever since her soul has been in torment, enveloped in a house of flame.
An affluent medical professor, Komiya, and his bossy wife, Tokio, are to look after Setsuko, their high-spirited niece from Osaka. Setsuko is a liberated woman who does what she wants, including smoking, even though she is a minor. On Saturday, the professor does not feel like going to his weekend golf game, but his wife packs him off anyway. So he leaves his bag at the apartment of his student Okada, and goes to a bar with a friend. Setsuko traces him there, and insists that he take her to a geisha house. When she gets rather tipsy, the professor calls Okada to take her home, while he sleeps at Okada's. The wife becomes suspicious of Setsuko when she sees Okada bringing her home, and also of her husband when she discovers that he did not go golfing.
Call Number: PL862.A4183 F7 2013 In English or Japanese
In the year 1963 in Yokohama, Japan, an innocent romance blossoms between two high school students, Umi and Shun. As Japan recovers from World War II and prepares to host the 1964 Olympics, the mood contains both optimism and conflict as the younger generation struggles to escape the shackles of the past. While trying to save a dilapidated Meiji-era club house from demolition, the relationship flourishes. But a buried secret from their past emerges to cast a shadow on the future and pull them apart.
Peace in 17th-century Japan causes the Shogunate's breakup of warrior clans, throwing thousands of samurai out of work and into poverty. An honorable end to such fate under the samurai code is ritual suicide, or hara-kiri.
Call Number: PR6060 .O497 H3 2004 In Japanese, dubbed in English or French
A young woman named Sophie is cursed by the Witch of the Waste and is turned into an old woman who is unable to tell anyone of her plight. Unable to continue her job at her mother's hat shop, she goes to the ambulatory castle of the notorious wizard Howl and insinuates herself into his household. Sophie befriends Calcifer, the fire demon who powers the castle and who is bound to Howl by a contract, the terms of which Calcifer cannot reveal. They promise to help each other with their problems. Like Calcifer, Howl can also see through the Witch's spell, and he and Sophie fall in love. Sophie helps Howl confront his former teacher, and the Witch of the Waste.
Set in 1950s Japan. A stubborn businessman disproves of his young daughter's decision to marry, because he had always expected that his daughter would first ask his permission to be wed, and indeed wait until he had chosen her husband for her. The daughter proceeds with her plans on her own volition, as her father's anger and disappointment are forced to recognize the shift away from tradition to modernity.
A Japanese architect and a French actress engage in a brief intense affair in Hiroshima in 1959. Both deal with their personal memories of World War II--he by articulating his firsthand experience with nuclear disaster, she by remembering her traumatic affair with a German soldier.
Call Number: PL857.O8 H6 2012 In English or Japanese
As the Empire of the Sun crumbles upon itself and a rain of firebombs falls upon Japan, the final death march of a nation is echoed in millions of smaller tragedies. Seita and his younger sister Setsuko are two children born at the wrong time, in the wrong place, and now cast adrift in a world that lacks not the care to shelter them, but simply the resources. They are forced to fend for themselves in the aftermath of fires that swept entire cities from the face of the earth.
Naomi is a normal teenager who loves clubbing with her friends. One day, her mother left the family to be with her new lover. Her shattered father sends Naomi off for the summer to work at his sister's country inn. It quickly becomes apparent that she is not cut out for the service industry and her aunt asks her to tend to the aging neighbor, Mrs. Koide, who is slowly succumbing to Alzheimer's. Having fond memories of the place, Naomi agrees. Though Mrs. Koide does not remember her, Naomi enjoys her direct manner and the stories from Mrs. Koide's youth.
Masayuki Mori stars as Kinji Kameda, a war veteran who was sentenced to death and then pardoned, in Akira Kurosawa's adaptation of the novel by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, which relocates the story from Russia to the snow-covered island of Hokkaido, Japan. Recently released from an asylum, the fragile Kameda descends further into madness when he becomes entangled with two women (Setsuko Hara and Yoshiko Kuga) and an old friend (Toshirô Mifune).
Kanji Watanabe was the Citizen's Section of the Municipal Office with a record of 30 years'regular attendance without absence. When one day he discovers that he has cancer, he comes to realize the truth of life and determines to build a park for the civilians before he dies.
An elderly and wealthy industrialist is driven to madness over fears of a nuclear attack. In a futile attempt to save his family he pressures them to leave Japan and move to the rain forest in Brazil where he believes they will be safe. His family, complacent and cynical, is outraged and move to have him declared insane.
Reconstructing the splendor of feudal Japan and the pageantry or war, Kurosawa creates a soaring historical epic about a peasant impersonating a nobleman in battle. Kagemusha is presented in its original 180 min. uncut Japanese version, not the shortened "international version" presented by 20th Century Fox.'
Set in Sixteenth Century Japan. Two peasant farmers, Tahei and Matakishi, have recently escaped the aftermath of a battle. When they encounter General Rokurota Makabe who is secretly transporting Yuki, the princess of a defeated family, and what remains of their wealth to a safe place. Tahei and Matakishi join the group as they travel through enemy territory with the gold, but only to try and steal some of the gold for themselves.
Call Number: PL873.O745 K3 2013 In Japanese, dubbed in English
There is a train station on the other side of death, yet not all who arrive on the platform will be judged ready for passage onwards. For one unready soul, there will be both a test and a second chance. Rather than be reborn, this soul will awake in the body of 14-year-old Makoto Kobayashi, where it must not only find a way to fit into Makoto's existence, but also unravel two mysteries. What is the secret of the great sin it committed in its own previous life?
Call Number: PN1997 .K39 2002 In Japanese, dubbed in English
Set 1,000 years after a global war that nearly destroyed all life on Earth. Nausicaä is the princess of a rural valley that lives at peace on the edge of a deadly fungal wasteland, until a ship carrying a weapon from a bygone industrial age crashes nearby. When warriors from a far country come to retrieve the artifact, their invasion draws Nausicaä and her people into a sprawling political conflict.
Lonely nine-year-old Masao leaves Tokyo in search of his mother, whom he has never met. He's accompanied on his journey across the Japanese countryside by the surly, middle-aged crook Kikujiro, who is none too happy being the chaperone. When Kikujiro gambles away all the travel money, the two must rely on their wits and the kindness of strangers.
Twelve-year-old Koichi lives with his mother and grandparents in southern Japan. He is separated from his brother Ryunosuke due to his parents' divorce; Ryunosuke lives with their father in the north. Koichi begins to believe that Japan's new bullet train service will create a miracle when the first trains pass each other at top speed, and enlists a group of friends on an improbable mission.
Manbei Kohayagawa has a rich life on three different fronts. He is the head of a brewery that is having problems at the moment, the head of a family in which one widowed daughter needs his help in finding a new mate and the other needs him to help her make the right choice in a future spouse. However, Manbei does not care about these setbacks and his solution to his burdens at the moment is to look up his old mistress and resume a relationship with her. His decision has unexpected consequences for himself and his family.
Call Number: PN1997 .I25 2001 In Japanese, dubbed in English
When the Yakuza boss Anjo disappears with a fortune taken from his gang, his sadomasochist number one, former lover, and his men go on a search for him. The mysterious Jiji arrives in their office and accuses the rival Yakuza Suzuki of abducting Anjo, and, as a result, Kakihara tortures him to try to get information out of him. When Kakihara realizes that he has committed a mistake, he loses his tongue to the Yakuza and soon after realizes that the responsible one is the psychopath and mentally deficient Ichi, who was abused in his childhood and is being controlled by Jiji.
In post-World War II Japan, grieving widower Shukichi Somiya takes comfort in the presence of his only daughter, who's old enough to marry but chooses instead to stay home and care for her aging father. Knowing she'll never take a husband as long as Shukichi remains alone, he crafts an innocent lie to push her out of the nest.
Sutekichi, a vulgar, comical thief takes up residence in a slum flophouse inhabited by many eccentric, destitute people. Osugi, the cruel landlady, and her sister, Okayo, both desire him, and fight each other over him. Set in Edo-period Japan.
Haunted by the mysterious loss of her grandmother many years before, a beautiful young mother (Makiko Esumi as Yumiko) struggles to come to terms with the sudden loss of her husband. Yumiko remarries and with her young son moves to her new husband's home in a remote village on the wild, untamed Sea of Japan. There, with time, she awakens to find love, understanding, happiness and a sense of peace.
Set in postwar Japan, the film follows the last two decades in the life of Hyakken Uchida, a free spirited writer and teacher, highlighted by his relationship with his students who venerate him in his old age.
Follows the lives of four siblings who have taken on their family's kimono manufacturing business, in the years leading up to the Pacific War. The two oldest have been married for some time, but according to tradition, the rebellious youngest sister cannot wed until the third, conservative and terribly shy, finds a husband.
Samurai Yoshimura Kanichirō leaves for a larger city so he can make more money to support his family. Initially he is seen as money hungry, but he soon gains respect in his new clan with his master swordsmanship and his honor.
In a village, everyone who reaches the age of 70 is banished to the top of Mt. Narayama to die, so as not to be a burden on the village and bring disgrace upon their family. Orin is 69 and despite being in good health, her time is coming. First, though, she has things to do and a score to settle.
A portrait of desperate Japanese soldiers stranded in a strange land during World War II. Denied hospital treatment for tuberculosis and cast off into the unknown, Private Tamura treks across an unfamiliar Philippine landscape, encountering an increasingly debased cross section of Imperial Army soldiers, who eventually give in to the most terrifying craving of all.
A bad day gets worse for rookie detective Murakami when a pickpocket steals his gun on a hot, crowded bus. Desperate to right the wrong, he goes undercover, scavenging Tokyo's sweltering streets for the thief, whose desperation has led him to a life of crime. With each step, the cop and the criminal's lives become more intertwined and the investigation becomes an examination of Murakami's own dark side.
Yukie Yagihara, a prominent professor's daughter, becomes enlightened to the nature of politics after her lover, a leftist activist, is jailed and later executed for spying. This drama about self-discovery is set in a militaristic pre-World War II Japan.
Tokyo, the late 1960s. Students around the world are uniting to overthrow the establishment and Toru Watanabe's personal life is similarly in turmoil. At heart, he is deeply devoted to his first love, Naoko. But their complex bond has been forged by the tragic death of their best friend years before. Watanabe lives with the influence of death everywhere. That is, until Midori, a girl who is everything that Naoko is not--outgoing, vivacious, and self-confident--marches into his life and Watanabe must choose between his past and his future.
Daigo Kobayashi is a devoted cellist in an orchestra that has just been dissolved and finds himself without a job. He decides to move back to his old hometown with his wife to look for work and start over. He answers a classified ad entitled 'Departures' thinking it is an advertisement for a travel agency. He discovers that the job is actually for a 'Nokanshi' or 'encoffineer,' a funeral professional who prepares deceased bodies for burial and entry into the next life. While his wife and others despise the job, Daigo takes a certain pride in his work and begins to perfect the art, acting as a gentle gatekeeper between life and death, between the departed and the family of the departed.
Financially strapped lovers indulge in offbeat adventures in this romance film. With only 35 yen between them, young Yuzo and his fiancée, Masako, meet at the train station on a sunny Sunday and set out to seek fun on a budget. Masako's optimism subdues Yuzo's financial worries as the couple finds many free adventures.
Call Number: PN1997 .O86 2010 In Japanese, dubbed in English
The first 13 episodes are set in Heian-Period Japan during a time of famine and widespread disease. The imperial court orders Minamoto no Raikō to bring back the magatama jewels, which have the power to restore the well-being of the city but are now in the hands of tribes and clans who are opposed to the court. As Raikō is sick and confined to his bed, his sister Hikaru pretends to be Raikō and sets out on a journey to recover the jewels accompanied by her loyal servant Tsuna. Episodes 14 to 26 are set in contemporary times where Hikaru and Tsuna investigate strange phenomena occurring in Tokyo. Driven by a need to complete what was left unfinished, 17-year-old Hikaru is joined by the freelance writer Tsuna. They travel across modern Japan and stumble across strangely familiar personalities from a long-forgotten era in their search for Hikaru's missing brother. As past and present collide, the man known as Mansairaku may once again tip the scales of destiny.
Call Number: PN1997 .P532 1998 In Japanese & Chinese
Three experiences make an impression on a young girl's childhood: her father's calligraphy on her face and neck, the text of a noblewoman's diary (or "pillow book"), and the discovery that her father is being blackmailed. These three images become a single obsession when the girl becomes a woman and meets a man who offers his body to her, both as a blank page to write upon and as a weapon of revenge.
Call Number: PN1997 .P669 2010 In Japanese, dubbed in English or French
A young boy named Sosuke rescues a goldfish named Ponyo, and they embark on a fantastic journey of friendship before Ponyo's father forces her to return to the sea. Ponyo's desire to be human upsets the balance of nature and only Ponyo's mother, a sea goddess, can restore nature's balance and make Ponyo's dreams come true.
[The film] tells the story of young Ramen Chef Masato ... who leaves his home and family's shop in Japan after his father dies in search of his mother's family and the recipes she left behind in Singapore. There he traces a culinary path of delicious signature dishes to find his estranged family across the sea. With the help of food blogger Miki ... he learns the recipes of his mother's homeland and the way to his grandmother's heart.
An aging warlord decides to split his kingdom between his three sons, who will live in three separate castles. The two eldest sons are quite happy, but the youngest thinks his father has gone mad, and predicts that it won't be long until the two older brothers are fighting with each other.
Call Number: PL801.K8 .R3 2002 In Japanese or English
Set in the Middle Ages, the nature of truth and subjective reality are probed in a series of flashbacks from four viewpoints to present the case history of a man's murder and the rape of his wife by a bandit.
Call Number: PN6790.J34 R4 2013 In Japanese, dubbed in English
Izumiko is a fifteen-year-old outcast who was raised in seclusion at an ancient shrine hidden deep within the forest in the Kumano mountains. This mysterious teenager destroys any electrical device she attempts to use, and her painful shyness has left her with few, if any friends. Her world begins to evolve after enrolling in Houjou Academy, a school home to students of supernatural origins. Accompanied by her fated guardian, the brooding monk-in-training Miyuki, Izumiko soon discovers the shocking truth about herself: she is a vessel for the spirit of a powerful and vengeful goddess from a time long since passed. As her bond with Miyuki grows stronger, the spirit lurking within Izumiko begins to awaken. Can this fragile beauty learn to control her newfound power? Or will the secret she carries make her the enemy of all mankind.
The film centers on Kane a grandmother who lives on her traditional farm in the hills near Nagasaki. Her husband and a number of siblings died in the 1945 atomic bombing of the city and memories of that event are never far from her mind. She learns that her elder brother, who went to Hawaii to seek his fortune in pineapples, is on his deathbed and would very much like to see his sister one last time. Her half-American nephew Clark is venturing to Nagasaki to escort her to Hawaii. Though the prospect of meeting a real live American excites Kane's four grandchildren who are staying with her for the summer, she remains ambivalent both about the prospects of going to the States, and about the dark memories Clark's presence dredges up.
The story of Sen-no Rikyu, a Buddhist priest, who four centuries ago brought the art of the tea ceremony to perfection. Living in one of the most turbulent moments in Japanese history, Rikyu gained unexpected political influence as the confidant and cultural mentor to the powerful warlord, Hideyoshi Toyotomi. The film illustrates the classic struggle between art and politics and between the impulse to create and the impulse to destroy.
A sweeping saga of the legendary seventeenth-century samurai, Musashi Miyamoto, set against the turmoil of a devastating civil war. Follows Musashi's odyssey from his unruly youth to his enlightened years as a warrior.
A wandering, seen-it-all ronin becomes entangled in the dangerous business of two other samurai hired to execute a band of peasants who have kidnapped the daughter of a corrupt magistrate. It is an tale of revenge and loyalty.
Sanshiro, comes to the city to apprentice at a ju-jitsu school. His first night there, he meets Yano, a master of judo, and begs to be Yano's student. As the youth learns the techniques, he must also learn "satori," the calm acceptance of Nature's law. If he can master "satori" Sanshiro can gain respect from an old teacher in a ju-jitsu school, and win the hand of Sayo, the teacher's daughter, who is also sought by jujitsu's finest master, Higaki, who vows to kill Sanshiro.
Ichiro is a painter whose circumstantial meeting with a famous singer is twisted by the tabloid press into an affair. He files a lawsuit against the gossip magazine, but his lawyer, Hiruta, is playing both sides. A portrait of cultural moral decline, Scandal is also a courtroom drama and a tale of human redemption.
This epic is about a group of 16th century samurai who are hired to defend a small Japanese village that finds itself annually raided by an army of bandits who steal the meager crops harvested by the peasants. Tired of relinquishing their food supply but woefully inept in combat skills, the villagers decide to hire a band of samurai to protect them. In addition to the primary conflict between the villagers and the bandits, much of the tale revolves around young Katsushiro's coming-of-age, both sexually and emotionally. Kikuchiyo's search for acceptance forms the other major storyline. Indeed, everyone in Seven Samurai is searching for adventure, for experience, for freedom from their oppressors.
Chronicles the events leading up to Emperor Hirohito's momentous speech, the historic renunciation of his divine status, and his meetings with General Douglas MacArthur, the commander-in-chief of the occupying American forces, who advises his own president not to declare the Japanese leader a war criminal.
A middle-aged office worker in postwar Tokyo is bored with his routine job and marriage. He eventually succumbs to an illicit affair with a co-worker. His wife inevitably discovers his infidelity, but when he accepts a transfer to the country, she follows him to start their life anew.
Call Number: PN1997.S69 2003 In Japanese, dubbed in English or French
A ten-year-old Chihiro riding along during a family outing as her father races through remote country roads. When they come upon a blocked tunnel, her parents decide to have a look around even though Chihiro finds the place very creepy. When they pass through the tunnel, they discover an abandoned amusement park. As Chihiro's bad vibes continue, her parents discover an empty eatery that smells of fresh food. After her mother and father help themselves to some tasty morsels, they turn into giant pigs. Chihiro understandably freaks out and flees. She learns that this very weird place, where all sorts of bizarre gods and monsters reside, is a holiday resort for the supernatural after their exhausting tour of duty in the human world. Soon after befriending a boy named Haku, Chihiro learns the rules of the land: one, she must work, as laziness of any kind is not tolerated; and two, she must take on the new moniker of Sen. If she forgets her real name, Haku tells her, then she will never be permitted to leave.
Set in an oceanfront suburb of Japan, this family drama unfolds over the course of a single summer day as the Yokoyama family gathers for a rare reunion held to commemorate the death of a family member who past before his time. It was 15 years ago that eldest Yokoyama son, Junpei, drowned in a tragic accident. Retired family patriarch Kyohei used to run a successful medical clinic out of the home, though the lights in his medical examining room haven't even been turned on in years. The tiles in the kitchen where Toshiko cooks family meals are slowly coming loose. His older sister, Chinami, has also arrived with her family, and does her best to entertain everyone. As the festive gathering commences and Toshiko lays out a lavish meal, it gradually becomes obvious that resentment and sorrow bonds this family as powerfully as love.
Follows the lives of five prostitutes in the Yoshiwara region of Tokyo. Each has a different story and different plans, but they all share an uncertain future as they face the outlawing of their profession.
A wave of suicides begins with the enigmatic mass suicide of 54 high school girls jumping in front of a subway train. When a detective receives a phone call tip that there is a website tracking the suicides before they happen, he sets out to solve the mystery.
Call Number: PN1997 .T334 2015 In English, French, or Japanese
Found inside a shining stalk of bamboo by an old bamboo cutter and his wife, a tiny girl grows rapidly into a lady. The mysterious princess enthralls all who encounter her, but ultimately she must confront her fate, the punishment for her crime.
Call Number: PN1997.2.T35 2011 In English or Japanese
In Earthsea, crops are dwindling, dragons have reappeared, and humanity is giving way to chaos. Lord Archmage Sparrowhawk, a master wizard, and Arren, a young prince, set out to find the cause for the imbalance in the land of Earthsea, while also searching for their own redemption.
Seibei Iguchi is a low-ranking samurai of the Unasaka clan in Shonai Province of northeast Japan. The divorce of his childhood friend Tomoe leads him into a confrontation with her violent ex-husband, a high-ranking samurai. Just as Seibei begins to dream that he might win the hand of the long loved Tomoe, he is caught in the shifting turmoil of the times and is assigned, against his wishes, to confront and kill a renowned warrior on the wrong side of a clan power struggle.
As 8-year old Sachiko tries to get rid of a giant version of herself who seems to pop up everywhere, her older brother Hajime, privately wrestles with his love-struck heart. Meanwhile, their mother Yoshiko is working hard, coming out of retirement as an animator, as her husband and professional hypnotist Nobuo watches on with slight apprehension. Even Nobuo's brother and successful manga artist Todoroki has his problems. And lastly there's Grandpa, the most bizarre and perhaps the most perceptive of all, who continues to search for a better way to live life to the full.
Set in postwar Japan. Gondo, a wealthy industrialist, is contacted by a gang of kidnappers, who inform him that they have kidnapped his son. The crooks demand a ransom for the boy's return. However, the amount of the ransom will force Gondo into bankruptcy. As Gondo prepares to pay the ransom, he discovers that his son is safe at home, and that the kidnappers have accidentally taken the son of Gondo's chauffeur. Gondo now has to decide between loosing his business or the death of his chauffeur's son.
Two daughters, Akiko and Takako, grew up under the sole guardianship of their father, Mr. Sugiyama after their mother walked out on the family. This created serious psychological problems for both young women that extended well into adulthood. Akiko now spends all of her free time hanging out at bars and pachinko parlors, looking for her boyfriend, while Takako withdraws from a severely dysfunctional relationship with her alcoholic husband, by whom she has one daughter. In time, Akiko meets a woman who claims to know her as an acquaintance from their childhood neighborhood, and senses that the lady might actually be her mother.
Story of a contemporary Japanese family torn apart after its patriarch unexpectedly loses his job. Ashamed, he keeps this a secret, but as he grows more despondent, his family resorts to drastic measures to break away from their fractured lives.
In sixteenth century Japan, Genjuro is a potter who longs for wealth and luxury, while Tobei, a farmer, dreams of the glories of the samurai to the point of ignoring his wife. Though a war rages around them, they venture to town to sell their wares. Genjuro becomes bewitched by a beautiful though vengeful ghost, while his wife is murdered by a soldier; Tobei becomes a noted warrior, while his wife descends into prostitution after being raped while searching for her husband.
Set in postwar Japan. Koichi Nishi, the secretary to the president of a housing corporation, is looking for revenge in the murder of his father. As he infiltrates the corrupt construction company that was responsible for his father's death, he marries his boss's daughter, hoping to get closer to those responsible. But once the wedding has passed he begins to fall in love with his wife and his plans for revenge fall apart.
The story is set on the campus of a university in Tokyo. Students from the literature department's 'film workshop' are about to start shooting their movie The Bored Murderer, part of their course curriculum. Everyone is in a rush to prepare for the shoot, but the lead actor drops out suddenly, and the team is forced to search for a replacement at the last minute. Matsukawa, the director, and Hisada, the first assistant, and other members of the team have their own personal problems with life and love, and the story unfolds 'just like in the movies'. Matsukawa's shallow attitude to his girlfriend, Yukari, and the behavior of the mysterious Ikeda, who is to play the lead role of the schoolboy murderer, add to the confusion of the whole situation. As for the one-time director, now lecturer, professor Nakajo, he is also harboring desires for the female student Rei, whilst hiding behind his calm, supportive exterior. Rei, in turn, has a completely different agenda. Everything comes to a head in an unexpected and tumultuous climax
Concerns two sisters, Fusako and Natsuko, one a war widow and the other in an affair with a drug dealer. Along with their younger friend Kumiko, they fall into prostitution and moral chaos and a life of gangs and gangsters, trapped by their city's postwar desperation and devastation.
Set in and around the swamps and back alleys of postwar Japan. Sanada, an alcoholic doctor, runs a small clinic in the slums of Tokyo. One day a young gangster, Matsunaga, comes to him for help, and Sanada has to pull himself together long enough to save the life of the young man. Sanada diagnoses Matsunaga with tuberculosis, and convinces him to begin treatment. However, when Matsunaga's former boss is released from prison and takes his gang over once again, Matsunaga stops following Sanada's advice and slips back into his old habits.
Set in Japan in the year 1860, Sanjuro a wandering samurai turns the war between two clans, fighting for control of a small village, to his own advantage. Neither clan is honorable, but Sanjuro is poor and hungry. So he agrees to work as a bodyguard (Yojimbo) for a silk merchant, only to then pretend to go to work for the other side, in order that the two clans will destroy each other. Imprisoned for his treachery, Sanjuro escapes in time to watch the two warring sides wipe each other out.
Yukinojo, a Kabuki actor, seeks revenge by destroying the three men who caused the deaths of his parents. Also involved are the daughter of one of Yukinojo's targets, two master thieves, and a swordsman who himself is out to kill Yukinojo.
"Reveals the untold story of resistance to U.S. military bases in Japan through a collage of paintings, photographs and films by Japan's most respected artists. Their stories and their art depict the struggle against the U.S. military presence, which provoked a national uprising in 1960 and still festers today"
Benefiting from having the charismatic 14th Dalai Lama as its most visible spokesperson, Buddhism is enjoying a surge of popularity, drawing an increasing number of spiritual seekers from the West as well as from the East. In this program, Hans King enters the world of the Buddha, beginning with the holy site of the Tree of Enlightenment, in India, and ending at a Zen Buddhist monastery in Japan, to offer an overview of the many branches of and traditions in Buddhism today.
Presents the story of Bunraku through two of its greatest masters, puppeteer Tamao Yoshida and chanter Sumitayu Takemoto. Cameras go backstage to capture the immense preparations and grueling rehearsals for their rendition of the masterpiece Shinju Ten no Amijima.
Enola Gay: Get a look inside the bomber that helped bring WWII to a stop, development of the atomic bomb, and the aftermath. Hiroshima: Fifty years after America dropped the first atomic bomb, this documentary looks at the events leading up to its use in the light of new information about a hidden agenda. Did top military officials order the attack despite knowing that Japan was willing to surrender? Did a political motivation drive Truman to defy his closest advisors? These and other questions are investigated.
The story of American politics and military policies as seen through the eyes of the former Secretary of Defense, under President Kennedy and President Johnson, Robert S. McNamara. McNamara is a controversial and influential political figure. He offers a candid journey through some of the most seminal events in contemporary American history. He offers insights into the 1945 fire bombing of Tokyo, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the effects of the Vietnam War.
A devastating earthquake and tsunami crippled Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex, leaving the country's once popular energy program in shambles. In response, Germany decided to abandon nuclear energy entirely. Should the U.S. follow suit? Frontline correspondent Miles O'Brien examines the implications of the Fukushima accident for U.S. nuclear safety, and asks how the disaster will affect the future of nuclear energy around the world.
This documentary examines the health and environmental effects of the disasters at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plants in March 2011. It assesses the impact that radioactive contamination has had on the health and livelihoods of Japanese people in the Fukushima area and beyond, on Japanese agriculture, on the safety of Pacific fisheries, and on the health of people around the world living in the path of radioactive particles released into the atmosphere.
Explores the period between the 16th and 19th centuries in Japan by examining the lives of shoguns, samurais, geishas, and the very few westerners allowed into Japan . Japan was then a world unto itself, closed to outsiders, and ruled by shoguns with absolute control. During this period, Japan transitioned from chaos and violence to a land of ritual refinement and peace.
10 volumes: Examines the evolution of Japan's traditional culture and the history of the pre-modern era preceding the western contacts of the 1850's. Utilizes studio production and location footage by the University of Mid-America, supplemented by archival footage supplied principally by NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation).
A comprehensive beginners' course on the language and culture of Japan for English speaking students. The text provides an introduction to the written language. Each program, based on a sociocultural theme, includes film shot on location in Japan.
In Japan, more and more young women are rebelling against the societal norm. They do not want to settle down, marry and have families. Instead, more and more have careers and live with their parents enabling them to have disposable income which they spend for their own enjoyment. Prof. Yamada calls them "single parasites." Although Japanese women have made strides in the marketplace, Japanese men still think of their wives as subservient. Seeing their mothers' constricted lives, it is not surprising that so many young women have given up on marriage. However, the impact on the economy and on demographics is dramatic. The birth rate has fallen significantly (as it has in many Western countries) and every second pregnancy ends in abortion. As the population ages, a diminishing workforce will not be sufficient to support their elders' pensions.
Volume 1 is an overview of the traditions and cultural aspects of Japan, exploring Japanese values and motivations. It also presents the facts of the 1945 atomic bombing of Hiroshima factually and graphically, with intercuts of contemporary reminders of the effects of the bombing.
Volume 2 illustrates the natural beauty of Japan and its natural resources. It illustrates Japanese attitudes towards the ocean and how the ocean is often a central theme in art, literature, song, and worship.
Volume 3 relates a famous and tragic story to illustrate the strict code of honor and duty between and samurai warrior and his lord. Discusses Makato: the concept that sincerity is often more important than the success of an effort. Makato is a vital part of Bushido.
Volume 4 discusses the beginnings of Buddhism and how it came to Japan. Examines Shinto, the indigenous Japanese religion, and explores the use of shrines for worship and examines some of the fundamental values and teachings of Shinto.
Volume 5 explores Chado (tea ceremony), Ikebana (flower arranging), garden design, food preparation, and martial arts. Highlights many social and cultural aspects that are unique to Japan, and discusses stereotypes of the Japanese. Tours some of the national treasures of Japan, such as Mount Fuji and the Tancho cranes.
"Explores the minds of former suicide bombers who participated in the first well-orchestrated suicide mission in modern history, the one carried out by the air arm of the Imperial Japanese Navy during WWII. Although in the beginning, these suicide pilots were university graduates and intellectual elites in their 20s, by 1942 the Navy was aggressively recruiting a large number of boys who were only in their low teens. Fortunately, some never flew their final suicide mission because the war ended before it was their turn to fly out. Producer/director [Masami Takahashi] interviews several friends of his deceased father (who was also a former suicide pilot) in order to understand the mindset and motives behind such an extraordinary behavior. Now in their 70s and 80s, these individuals reflect upon their past and talk candidly about their lives, issues related to patriotism, spirituality, and on-going turmoil in the Middle East"--Container.
"Advances in healthcare mean that more people are living longer -- with over 560 million aged 60 and over in the world today. In parts of Europe, North America, and Japan, the proportion of older people is rising faster than any other group. The result, often, is a growing population of old people with too few young people to take care of them. This program explores the implications in three different countries: India, Japan and Tunisia."--Container.
This documentary examines the aftermath of the 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima, Japan. It looks at the lives of some of the refugees from the town of Futaba and raises questions regarding the future of nuclear power in Japan.
This disturbing documentary illustrates the damage caused by radiation, focusing on the lives of those who have suffered through the harmful effects of nuclear warfare as well as those who live near plants and factories that disperse radiation.
This film introduces three annabes who work as hosts at the New Marilyn Club in Tokyo. Annabes are women who live as men and have girlfriends, although they don't usually identify as lesbians. As the film follows them at home and on the job, all three talk frankly to the camera about their gender-bending lives, revealing their views about women, sex, transvestitism and lesbianism. Alternating with these interviews are sequences shot inside the Club, patronized almost exclusively by heterosexual women who have become disappointed with men. This is a documentary about the complexity of female sexuality in Japan today.
Conveys some idea of the religious feeling which infuses the Japanese contemplation of nature and the gods or 'kami' the Japanese detect in landscapes, trees, waterfalls; and which prompts them to build simple Shinto or more complex, Buddhist-influenced shrines marked by a balance between natural and man-made space. Includes many views of the Japanese landscape, forests and woods, some rituals of purification, shrine carpenters, rice festivals and Shinto priests and Japanese people at their worship. The following shrines are depicted: Ise Grand Shrine, Izumo Grand Shrine, Kasuga Grand Shrine, Kitano Temmangu, Kumano Hyatama, Kumano Nachi, Munakata Shrine, Nishna Shinmei and Omiwa Shrine. The cinematography is gorgeous; the mood contemplative.
This documentary tells the story of Japanese diplomat Chiune Sugihara, consul to Lithuania during World War II. Sugihara defied Tokyo authorities and wrote transit visas that allowed hundreds of Jewish families to flee Europe through Russia to Japan and other countries. Includes home movies, photographs, film footage, and interviews with Holocaust survivors who owe their lives to Chiune Sugihara.
Call Number: BQ988.U887 Z4 2006 In English & Japanese
With rare recordings and interviews of those who knew and studied under him, this documentary offers an overview of Zen master Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki's life and times. Provides thematic segments on Satori (Enlightenment), East & West, Christianity & Buddhism, "Self Power" & "Other Power", Zen--religion or philosophy, Zen & psychoanalysis, Zen & the arts, life & death, as seen through the perspective of Suzuki's Zen teachings.