2005-06-20 | Documentary Films: Memories of Life

Special program featuring outstanding documentaries that focus on a singleplace and depict changes through time and space.

Sendai mediatheque
Documentary Films: Memories of Life

June 24 (Fri)
16:00 DV2
Dir: Frederick Wiseman / USA / 2002 / English / Japanese subtitles / 16mm / 160 min

Frederick Wiseman continues to confront social issues in the US. His previous work, Domestic Violence, told the story from the viewpoint of thevictims and pointed the camera at the counselors and local police. This work is an exhaustive depiction of the workings within the criminal justice system. Without any narration or commentary, the work pursues the reality of violence within families.

19:00 Gift of Life
Dir: Wu Yii-feng / TAIWAN / 2003 / Mandarin, Taiwanese / Japanese, English subtitles / Video / 148 min

On September 21, 1999, Taiwan was hit by a 7.3 magnitude earthquake, leavingover 2,500 people dead, injured or missing. Immediately following theearthquake the director went to disaster site, and continued shooting for 4 years while exchanging letters with a friend. Depicts the director’s ailing father in an old-age home along with the sorrows of a family who lost their own father in the earthquake. Awarded a Runner-up Prize at YIDFF 2003.

June 25 (Sat)
11:00 Tie Xi Qu: West of Tracks
Dir: Wang Bing / CHINA / 2003 / Chinese / Japanese, English subtitles / Video / 545 min
(Part 1: Rust 240 min, Part 2: Remnants 175 min, Part 3: Rails 130 min) *with intermission

Nine-hour work divided into three parts: Rust, Remnants, and Rails. Thestage is Tie Xi district in northeastern China, originally establishedduring the Japanese occupation and transformed into an industrial region with a burgeoning population. Tenderly depicts people living there and captures a distinct moment in time. Winner of the Robert and Frances Flaherty Prize (The Grand Prize) at YIDFF 2003.

June 26 (Sun)
12:00 Living on the River Agano (“Aga ni ikiru”)
Dir: Sato Makoto / JAPAN / 1992 / Japanese / 16mm / 115 min

Film shot over three years by a crew of seven including director Sato Makoto. Depicts the lives of people living along Agano River, known for theMinamata disease in Niigata. Studies their lives as they live with the riverand work in agriculture and fishing, quietly probing the cruelty of naturedestroyed. Awarded a Runner-up Prize at YIDFF 1993.

15:00 Memory of Aga (“Aga no kioku”)
Dir: Sato Makoto / JAPAN / 2004 / Japanese / English subtitles / 16mm / 55 min

Ten years after Living on the River Agano. Cameraman Kobayashi Shigeru and other crew members gather together and begin filming. They confront reality as they once again shoot the nature of the Agano River. Many peopleencountered during the original shoot have passed away, and former ricepaddies have gone fallow. Two years later,the footage was combined with theextensive outtakes from Living on the River Agano, resulting in the creation of this film.

Talk with director Sato Makoto following the June 26 15:00- screening of Memory of Aga (“Aga no kioku”). (Childcare available)

Sato Makoto profile
Born in 1957. Became involved with activism concerning the Minamata diseasesince university student days, and following graduation worked as assistant director on The Innocent Sea—1982, Minamata (“Muko naru umi—1982 Minamata”, dir: Katori Naotaka / 1982). In 1989 moved with 7 crew members to Niigata to begin production on Living on the River Agano (“Aga ni ikiru”). Work completed in 1992. Other works include Artists in Wonderland (“Mahiru no hoshi”) (1998), SELF AND OTHERS (2000), Hanako (2001), and Memory of Aga (“Aga no kioku”) (2004). Latest work is OUT OF PLACE (2004).

18:00 S21, the Khmer Rouge Killing Machine
Dir: Rithy Panh / FRANCE / 2002 / Cambodian / Japanese, English subtitles / Video / 101 min

“S21” is the name of a former concentration camp for political prisoners in Cambodia. Former victims and tormentors caught up in the atrocities committed by the Khmer Rouge are reunited, and relive the inhumanity andcruelty of their days here. Facts that are brought to light by evidencepresented here, and the vividness of the exchanges between two formeradversaries transcend the twenty-five years that have passed. This filmsilently pulsates with the emotion felt by Cambodian-born director RithyPanh toward his homeland. Awarded a Runner-up Prize at YIDFF 2003.

June 27 (Mon)
13:00 S21, the Khmer Rouge Killing Machine
16:00 Gift of Life
19:00 DV2

June 28 (Tue)
16:00 Living on the River Agano
19:00 Memory of Aga

[Venue] Sendai Mediatheque, 7th Floor, Studio Theater
2-1 Kasuga-cho, Aoba-ku Sendai City, Miyagi Prefecture 980-0821
General admission 1,000 yen, students and under 800 yen, 5-screening ticket3,000 yen (same price for advance and day-of sales). Tickets sold at NADiff bis on the first floor of Sendai mediatheque. Half-priced tickets for individuals with senior citizen or handicapped proof-of-identification. Reseating for each screening (180-seat capacity).
Theater opens 15 minutesbefore screening. Program changes and seating restrictions may be imposed as necessary, and your understanding is greatly appreciated.
For those who want childcare during the June 26 (Sun) screening of Memory of Aga, please send a reply-paid postcard with your email address,fax number, address, name, telephone number, child's name and age (year and month) by June 16 (Thu) to Sendai Mediatheque Childcare.
[Presented by]
Sendai Mediatheque
[In cooperation with]
YIDFF Organizing Committee
[Supported by]
ACE Japan
phone: 022-713-3171 (Sendai Mediatheque)

For more information Sendai Mediatheque website