Monday, November 14, 2011

Powerful new documentary follows the "Ending Note" of a lifelong salesman

by Chris MaGee

I have to admit that I am a huge fan of documentaries in general, and Japanese documentaries in particular. It seems that Japan has seen a recent crop of very talented documentary filmmakers, and their work is finding its way to film festivals throughout the West. One film that screened last month at the 47th annual Chicago International Film Festival that has been gaining a lot of critical attention is "Ending Note: Death of a Japanese Salesman".

The film follows first time filmmaker Mami Sunada's father through being diagnosed with terminal cancer. After 40 years as a sales representative Sunada's father must come to terms with the life he's led and the people he will be leaving behind. he does this by creating a video diary, something that has apparently become popular amongst aging Japanese in recent years. Very powerful material indeed. You can watch the trailer for "Ending Note: Death of a Japanese Salesman" below, as well as visit its official website here. Hopefully it will be making stops at more festivals in the very near future.


Virginia Sorrells and Nicholas Vroman said...

I'm very much in agreement with Chris here. Here's my short review on it from EL Magazine -

Anonymous said...

I saw this film today (in Tokyo) and it was absolutely brilliant. I definitely recommend catching it if it plays at a festival near you.

If you think all Japan has to offer is anime, otaku art and AKB48, think again. A truly sincere and heart-wrenching film.

One small detail: it's not actually a video diary created by the father himself. In fact, the footage is filmed by his daughter, Mami, a filmmaker who works with Hirokazu Koreeda (who also produced this film).