Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The Berlin International Film Festival announces its full line-up of Japanese films

by Chris MaGee

The 59th Annual Berlin International Film Festival is only a couple of weeks away and its programmers have finally announced this year's full line-up of its Forum section in which four films from Japan have been included. Heading off the list is Sion Sono's 4-hour expolartion of sex, religion, martial arts films and upskirt photography, "Love Exposure" (above) which has been garnering serious buzz wherever it has screened. Ichii Masahide will be presenting his drama "Naked of Defenses (Mubobi)" about a woman working in a factory in rural Japan who grows jealous of her pregnant co-worker which won the Grand Prix at the 2008 Pia Film Festival. Kazuhiro Soda's fascinating documentary about the mental health system in Japan simply titled "Mental" will also screen, as will Funahashi Atsushi's drama "Deep in the Valley (Yanaka boshoku).

The 59th Annual Berlin International Film Festival will run from February 5th to 15th. For a full listing of all the films in the Berlinale's Forum section, which spotlights films from "distant film-producing countries", check out this list at Variety Asia Online.

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