by Chris MaGee
Satoshi Miki caused quite a stir with last year's "Adrift in Tokyo". The gentle comedy about the wanderings of a 20-something slacker (Jo Odagiri) and a mournful yakuza (Tomokazu Miura) through Japan's capital city appeared on numerous critic's top ten lists and I'm personally waiting eagerly for the North American DVD release from Montreal's Evokative Films. Miki isn't resting on his laurels though and is currently putting the finishing touches on his next film, again a comedy, titled "Instant Numa". It stars Kumiko Aso as an unemployed O.L. (office lady) who takes over her hippy father's antique store with the help of the neighbourhood punk rocker played by Ryo Kase. Way back in August we reported on the first few images of Aso and Kase in character hitting the web, but with the May release of the film getting closer and closer the P.R. people at Kadokawa Pictures have begun releasing short video clips of the cast and director Miki searching around a pond in the country for what could be the mythical frog men of Japanese folklore, the kappa. Not sure if the kappa hunt is related to the film's plot or a sub-plot or not, but Kevin Ouellette over at Nippon Cinema is hosting a trio of these videos. Of course they're scripted, or at least set up, but it's nice to see what at least appears to be candid moments between the film's stars.
Head on over to Nippon Cinema here to see if you can spot the mythical kappa, and thanks to AllCinema.net for the lovely promo still above.