by Chris MaGee
The 15th annual Fantasia Film Festival wrapped up in Montreal on August 7th. After yet another marathon three-week film blitz the fest's awards were announced, and there were more than a few Japanese success stories in the bunch.
The big winner turned out to be Yoshimasa Ishibashi's zany comedy "Milocrorze: A Love Story" (above). The film, which stars actor Takayuki Yamada in three different roles, too home the Best Director Jury Prize, the Silver in the Best Asian Feature Audience Award category, the Gold in the Most Innovative Feature Audience Award category, and "Milocrorze" ended up tying with Joseph Kahn's "Detention" for the Guru Prize for the Most Energetic Feature. All these awards are richly deserved as "Milocrorze" has fast become on of our favorite new films here at the J-Film Pow-Wow.
It wasn't just Ishibashi's films that took home the trophies at Fantasia though. "Milocrorze" shared the top three spots in the Best Asian Feature Audience Award with a tie for the Gold between Sion Sono's "Cold Fish" and Takashi Miike's "13 Assassins". Also joining these in the winner's circle were Takeshi Koike's "Redline" in the Best Animation Feature Audience Award category, Norie Yasui for Best Actress for her role in Hisayasu Sato's "Love & Loathing & Lulu & Ayano", and a Special Mention Award from the jury for Shunji Iwai's English-language feature debut "Vampire" for its "original and contemplative take on suicide and our society’s fascination with the vampire myth.”
Congratulations to all the winners, and we leave you with the trailer for Shunji Iwai's "Vampire" starring Kevin Zeggers, Keisha Castle Hughes, Amanda Plummer and Yu Aoi. Thanks to The Montreal Gazette for this news.