The Tokyo International Film Festival will showcase the works of director Yoshida Keisuke at next month’s 34th edition. The festival runs Oct. 30-Nov. 8, 2021.
Two films by Yoshida are getting commercial releases this year, his recent “Blue,” and “Intolerance,” which reaches Japanese theaters later this month (Sept. 23.)
The festival will give house room to “Blue,” “Intolerance” and his 2016 title “Himeanole.” Yoshida has also gained currency in recent years for titles including “Thicker Than Water” and “Come on Irene,” both from 2018.
The newly-expanded Nippon Cinema Now section replaces the previous Japan Now section and aims to bring more diverse Japanese films to world audiences by focusing on emerging and singular talents who deserve greater recognition on a global scale.
“Each film expresses his singular vision and deeply moves audiences. Yoshida’s talent for depicting the madness of human relations between a diversity of characters, including a stalker, siblings, an international couple, boxers, a perpetrator and a victim, deserves to earn increased notice at film festivals in Japan and abroad in the future,” said the Tokyo festival as explanation for its choice.
“The first Yoshida Keisuke film I saw was ‘Himeanole.’ I was astonished by his amazing talent as a director, and I went back and watched his earlier films. I was embarrassed that I hadn’t seen them. Yoshida’s ability to bring out such drama from ordinary people is something to behold. It is a great pleasure to highlight his work in 2021, a year in which he has released two masterpieces, ‘Blue’ and ‘Intolerance’,” said Tokyo Festival programming director Ichiyama Shozo.
Yoshida studied at the Tokyo Visual Arts film school and initially worked as a lighting engineer, including on films by director Shinya Tsukamoto. Yoshida’s directing debut, youth drama “Raw Summer” in 2006, won the Yubari International Fantastic Film Festival’s Grand Prix.
He then published a novel and later filmed it as the father-daughter comedy “Café Isobe” (2008). His other films include “Tsukue no Nakami” (2007), “Sankaku” (2010), “The Workhorse & the Bigmouth” (2013), “My Little Sweet Pea” (2013) and “Silver Spoon” (2014).