Tokyo FILMex Goes to Eleven
International film festivals can be read as cultural barometers, with recent trends in cinema echoing broader shifts in the world system of image production.
For the Japanese film industry, the most conspicuous change in the past decade has been that films of Western origin are being steadily displaced by Asian productions.
This year’s edition includes four sections, spanning Asia and world cinema, past and present. Often drawing upon the international festival circuit, the films in the main competition and “Special Screenings” sections have their Japanese premiere at FILMeX.
The festival opens with Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s “Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives”, a highly imaginative story of a middle-aged man who returns home to rural Thailand, expecting to meet the end of his life. A surprise winner of the Palm d’or at Cannes, “Uncle Boonmee” has both mesmerized and polarized critics across Europe and North America.