Nippon Connection Film Festival 2009
Japanese cinema returns to Frankfurt this spring. From April 15-19, Nippon Connection will feature fascinating and creative Japanese films for the ninth time. With over 150 short and feature films, ranging from experimental and animation films to blockbuster movies and documentaries, the festival includes many German and European premieres. Approximately 20 directors will present their films in person. Kazuyoshi Kumakiri will present his character-driven new film NON-KO as a German premiere. Other highlights include Shinya Tsukamoto's NIGHTMARE DETECTIVE 2 and Kiyoshi Kurosawa's TOKYO SONATA, which portrays the slow disintegration of a family and was already celebrated at the Cannes Film Festival. But what would Nippon Connection be without animation films? Among others, we present the compilations GENIUS PARTY and GENIUS PARTY BEYOND by Studio 4 Degrees C, which also produced TEKKON KINKREET and MIND GAME For the fifth time, Bankhaus Metzler will fund the 2000 Euros Nippon Cinema Award audience prize. After the festival in Frankfurt, Nippon Connection Film Festival on Tour -- a selection of the Digital Program -- will tour various cities around the world including Munich, New York, and Barcelona. After months of reviewing the lot of them, the festival crew has arranged a film program, bringing together a number of highlights from the latest Japanese film productions. One great film event not to be missed is Sion Sono's monumental LOVE EXPOSURE, which received the Caligari and FIPRESCI awards at this year's Berlinale. The drama presents the story of a youth with a lust for life, getting entangled in a web of passion and sin. Exceptionally talented, Kazuyoshi Kumakiri will contribute his new film NON-KO as a German premiere to Nippon Connection. Cult director Shinya Tsukamoto's NIGHTMARE DETECTIVE 2 is also eagerly awaited. Kiyoshi Kurosawa's TOKYO SONATA, already praised at Cannes Film Festival, is a film about the slow disintegration of a family. STILL WALKING, the latest film from veteran director Hirokazu Kore-eda, subtly deals with the subject of death and has received many awards throughout the world. Enthusiasts of cheerful films will love Toshi Lee's manga adaptation DETROIT METAL CITY: a musician is tuned up against his will into a glam rock star, being forced to wear makeup reminiscent of the glam-metal group Kiss. In successful Yukihiko Tsutsumi's elaborate comic adaptation 20TH CENTURY BOYS, mankind is threatened with annihilation. Of course, Japanese animes are a must see. Amongst others, they will be showing the two compilations GENIUS PARTY and GENIUS PARTY BEYOND, both productions of creative wizards from Studio 4DegreeC, having gained their fame for such works as TEKKON KINKREET and MIND GAME. Another delicacy is the dark comedy horror anime HELLS by Yoshiki Yamakawa. Although it has a large movie selection, Nippon Connection offers more than just films. The Nippon Culture program allows visitors to experience Japanese culture and traditions through sound installations, audio-plays, a concert and an exhibition of Japanese video art presented by the Galerie Station in the Kuenstlerhaus Mousonturm. Nippon Culture will once more offer the popular cooking class by the Japanese Consulate General, as well as a tea ceremony, tea lounge, noodle bar, karaoke, parties, and more. With a total attendance of over 16,000, Nippon Connection is the world's largest Japanese film festival. It provides a unique overview of the latest productions in the Japanese film industry and is made possible by the non-profit organization Nippon Connection. Venues include Studierendenhaus at the Campus Bockenheim (festival center), cinema Orfeos Erben, cinema at the German Film Museum Frankfurt and Kuenstlerhaus Mousonturm.