JAPAN FLIX MUSINGS

daily dose of japanese pop and subculture

[New Film Release] Pink Subaru now available in the USA from Japan Flix

Announcements - January 24, 2014 - Japan flix

Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe

Japan Flix is excited to announce that its latest title, Pink Subaru, is available to rent and download on all the usual streaming suspects – iTunes, Xbox, and Amazon!

Pink Subaru tells the story of Elzober, an Arab sushi chef working near the border of the West Bank in Israel. For his entire working life, he saved his earnings so that he can buy the respected Japanese car, a Subaru Legacy. Elzober is particularly ecstatic because he will be driving his younger sister around for her upcoming wedding. However, the day after he takes home his coveted Legacy, its stolen by car thiefs. Thus begins Elzober’s journey to retrieve the love of his life.

Newcomer, Kazuya Ogawa, directs. Ogawa was inspired by his observation during his stay in Israel that almost all the vehicles on the road were Subarus. The history behind this is that in the 1970s, Subaru was the only car manufacturer who would service the Israeli market due to political pressures from its much larger Arab neighbors. Subaru’s availability and high quality were respected by the people. As a result, Subaru now boasts over 80% share in the Israeli market.

Ogawa took this background and the setting, Tayibe, an Israeli border town, and crafted this story entirely around the day-to-day lives of ordinary people, not around the political conflict between Israelis and Palestinians. When Ogawa shows you the mundane interaction between the Jewish car saleswoman and Arab customer or the bright smiles of the Jewish and Arab children playing soccer together, you are just immersed in each moments’ inherent beauty. His pictures make you forget that there are underlying racial, religious, and political conflicts.

The film is entirely spoken in Arabic and Hebrew with local actors (with the exception of a few Japanese side characters). Rather than creating distance with the subject matter, the film exudes Ogawa’s love for this foreign country, its people, and culture. Being a Japanese director, rather than creating distance with the material, infused the film with a distinct charm brought on by third-party appreciation.

The star, Akram Telawe, who plays Elzober, breathes incredible life into his character and the overall film. Elzober is in pretty much all scenes. Rather than buckle under the heavy pressure, his powerful face is tremendously expressive and the numerous extreme closeups are a delight. Needless to say, Telawe carries the film.

There are many memorable moments that stick with you much after the film ends. Elzober wearing pink underwear, the child who is driven to the next town by the car thief who is stealing the car the child is in, and the ending, which is predictable, but cute and endearing nonetheless, just to list a few. Perhaps not all the moments are necessary to the story, but give context to the situation and characters and a joyful richness.

Japan Flix is proud to add the beautiful, hilarious, dramatic, and touching Pink Subaru to its collection. We hope it expands everyone’s conception of Japanese film.

The film can be downloaded or streamed on iTunes, Xbox, and Amazon. Be sure to check them out.



Check out the film’s page here.

Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa
Pink Subaru still Akram Telawe Kazuya Ogawa

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[New Film Release] Japan Flix releases new film Perfect Education: Hong Kong Affair

Announcements - July 1, 2013 - Jin

Perfect Education Hong Kong Affair still

NEW YORK, NY (July 1, 2013) – Japan Flix, the boutique online Japanese film distributor based in Brooklyn, New York, announced today that the classic 2002 film PERFECT EDUCATION: HONG KONG AFFAIR is available for rental and purchase to U.S. and Canadian audiences for the first time ever on the iTunes Store as of this release and on XBOX Live starting July 23rd.

HONG KONG AFFAIR is the third film in the Japanese exploitation series that garners a cult following across Asia. Each film in the series tells the story of a middle-aged man who kidnaps a young girl and the unexpected relationship that develops between the two.

HONG KONG AFFAIR is the story of the kidnapping of Ai, a Japanese high school girl, by Bo, a Hong Kong taxi driver, during a class trip and the fateful transformation of these two lonely and broken characters.

Starring in the film as the desperate Bo is Tony Ho, Hong Kong Film Award nominee for THE LONGEST SUMMER. Ho has appeared in over 40 Hong Kong films, demonstrating a broad range from the dramatic COLOR OF PAIN and INFERNAL AFFAIRS to the comedic 3-D SEX AND ZEN: EXTREME ECSTASY.

Supporting Ho is Kana Ito who plays the beautiful Ai. Ito, former grade school girls’ pop band Nezumikko Club member and model, makes her first ever nude appearance in HONG KONG AFFAIR.

Also notable is the cameo appearance by Naoto Takenaka. Takenaka, a mainstay in Japanese film and television, appearing in nearly 200 works and is recognizable internationally for his role as the bald dancer in the 1996 original SHALL WE DANCE?, appears as Ai’s school teacher.

“We are very excited to release this classic film for the first time ever in North America,” stated Japan Flix president, Teruyuki Takayama. “The Perfect Education series is cult classic in Asia not just because of its racy content, but also for its brilliant filmmaking. The cinematography is beautiful, the story is masterfully told, and the acting is impeccable. I’m proud to be sharing it with American viewers.”

View the trailer on the HONG KONG AFFAIR web page on JapanFlix.com (www.japanflix.com/title/perfect-education-hong-kong-affair). Links to HONG KONG AFFAIR on the iTunes Store and XBOX LIVE store can also be found on the film’s page.

Japan Flix is a digital distribution venture that makes Japanese films available for rent or purchase in the United States and Canada. Fans can stay up-to-date on Japan Flix news through their website, their newsletter (www.japanflix.com/subscribe), Facebook (www.facebook/japanflix) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/japanflix).

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If you’d like more information about this topic, a free DVD screener for review purposes, or to schedule an interview, please email Jin Yoshikawa at jin@japanflix.com

Perfect Education Hong Kong Affair still

Perfect Education Hong Kong Affair still

Perfect Education Hong Kong Affair still

Perfect Education Hong Kong Affair still

Perfect Education Hong Kong Affair still

Perfect Education Hong Kong Affair still

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Japan Flix discontinues streaming service

Announcements - March 26, 2012 - Jeffrey

As you may have noticed, over the past few days, the streaming option along with many of our films have disappeared.

We at Japan Flix have decided to discontinue the streaming service to shift our focus from our delivery method to the content itself. In other words, we our concentrating our efforts on finding and acquiring never-before-seen Japanese films like Tomie Vs. Tomie and Shisei: The Tattooer.

Japan Flix’s collection is currently available on iTunes and Zune. In the coming months, we will be working on expanding our selection and making them available on more platforms.

It has been a terrific experience developing a brand new streaming service. While our hope to provide something that other services didn’t, didn’t exactly pan out, we enjoyed the process and learned many things about what Japanese film fans truly care about.

Now, we’re really excited to get back to our core and focus on the movies. Stay tuned for exciting news as we announce new films and new platforms here on our blog!

More details…

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[Trailer Watch] Zombie Ass will bombard you with shit joke after shit joke

Interestingness - February 24, 2012 - Jin

Zombie Ass Japanese campy horror movie

I recently wrote an article about how only certain types of Japanese movies make it to Western audiences. I argued that it’s because of big bad companies. Those one percenters. They select films based solely on the bottom line. They’re only going to import Japanese films they know will do well based on past experience. I went on to say that Japan Flix, since it’s a small company of like-minded individuals, tries to introduce films that have cultural value.

Which is why I am going to introduce you to the film Zombie Ass.

This ridiculous horror flick is literally about zombies coming out of the toilet and spewing all kinds of shit and mayhem from their asses.

Zombie Ass still

“1968, they came from the grave. 2002, they came from viruses. 2012, they come from the toilet.” A bunch of high school kids enter a secluded village for an intensive diet involving swallowing a parasite supposedly effective for losing weight. Something goes wrong and soon people are being chased by zombies, there’s crap, vomit, blood everywhere, and some forced plot gives us gratuitous nudity.

It’s directed by Iguchi Noboru who’s nearly achieved demi-god status among the followers of this niche subculture. What kind of subculture am I talking about? The subculture riddled with titles like Robo Geisha, Karate Robot Zaborgar, Machine Girl.

These films take ideas you thought were cool in middle school like ninjas, geisha, zombies, machine guns, yakuza, girls, etc. and mix them together in outrageous combinations. The stunts, special effects, even acting are done in earnest, but you just can’t help but laugh at how ridiculous everything is.

Zombie Ass still

Hollywood tried to have a go at it, like with Snakes on a Plane, but they can’t achieve the success that Japan has. There’s too much restraint. Snakes has the appropriate situational comedy, but a huge budget and good actors reduce the “camp” factor. Japan can do it right because they aren’t trying to be campy, they just are.

No country other than Japan could make such kinds of films that so many people appreciate. It’s a unique cultural export that I’m proud of. I’m proud of Zombie Ass.

Here’s another trailer. This one tries to sell the sex aspect. You don’t need to understand Japanese to get the humor. That’s the beauty of potty jokes isn’t it?

Zombie Ass comes out in theaters in Japan tomorrow, February 24th. Expect to see this in your local campy theaters, if not in your favorite DVD store or maybe here on Japan Flix sometime in the next year or two.

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