by Chris MaGee
The Japanese fascination with Lucy Maud Montgomery's classic children's novel "Anne of Green Gables" is well known. Millions of copies of the adventures of the ginger-haired girl from Avonlea have been sold in Japan, fan clubs for the book have been formed, and tours of Prince Edward Island geared specifically to these fans have been going on for years. Now director Takako Miyahira has made this obsession with Montgomery's creation the crux of a film.
"Looking for Anne" stars Kazuko Yoshiyuki as Anri, a shy young Japanese woman who has come to P.E.I. on a quest: to find an old soldier who lives at the foot of a lighthouse. Well, this isn't any old soldier. This man was the lover of her grandmother in the days following the end of WW2, and he was the one who first gave her a copy of "Anne of Green Gables". With the help of a middle-aged owner of a bed and breakfast, a pair of Japanese sisters at the B&B, and a retired philosophy professor Anri begins to uncover more about her grandmother's story, the identity of the old soldier and the true nature of love.
"Looking for Anne" is a Canadian-Japanese co-production and from Zuno Films and it recently made its debut at the film market at the Cannes Film Festival this spring. It's interesting to note that this isn't the first time that Takako Miyahira has worked on a Canadian-Japanese co-production. In 2005 she worked as the editor on Claude Gagnon's "Kamataki" starring Tasuya Fuji.
Thanks to CinemaCafe.net for pointing the way to this and Cinando.com for the plot details. Hopefully this film will get a trailer and official site soon so we can post it here.