Tokyo IFF highlights young Asian talent2 min readReading Time: 2 minutes
Four Asian films will compete in the main competition of next month’s 27th Tokyo International Film Festival æ±äº¬å›½éš›æ˜ ç”»ç¥ (23-31 Oct 2014). New films by Malaysia’s Edmund YEO æ¥Šæ¯…æ†, China’s LI Ruijun æŽç¿çº and the Philippines’ Khavn DE LA CRUZ will compete with YOSHIDA Daihachi å‰ç”°å¤§å…«‘s already-announced Pale Moon ç´™ã®æœˆ within the fifteen film selection.
After several shorts, Yeo’s River of Exploding Durians æ¦´è“®å¿˜è¿” (pictured) marks his directorial debut. Set in a port town, the romance of two high school students is cut short as the community rises up against plans to build a factory. Yeo told Film Business Asia that is is the first film from Malaysia to compete at the festival.
Li’s River Road å®¶åœ¨æ°´è‰è±èŒ‚çš„åœ°æ–¹ – which participated at the 2011 Hong Kong Asia Film Financing Forum (HAF) é¦™æ¸¯äºžæ´²é›»å½±æŠ•è³‡æœƒ under the title _Where Is My Home? – is about two brothers of the Uygur ethnic minority who travel along the Silk Road to reunite with their parents.
De La Cruz’s Ruined Heart: Another Lovestory Between a Criminal & a Whore Pusong wazak: Isa na namang kuwento ng pag-ibig sa pagitan ng puta at kriminal is a romance about a hit man who rescues a prostitute from violence. It participated at the Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival project market last year.
In a statement, programming director Yoshi YATABE çŸ¢ç”°éƒ¨å‰å½¦ described his three criteria for making the competition selection: “auteurism”, “diversity” and “an unswerving focus on depicting humanity”. He wrote, “To sum up a common trait of the highly diverse lineup of 15 films on view: they could all be called portrayals of ‘people with their backs to the wall’.”
The four relatively young Asian directors – who have an average age of 35-years-old – reflects the festival’s broader shift to making the event a springboard for young film-making talent in the region. The move was best demonstrated by last year’s launch of the Asian Future section, dedicated to first- and second-time directors.