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Sections In Brief


Sections In Brief


When we watch a film, it is the actions of the characters up on the screen (who are people, just like us) which cause us to feel empathy, repulsion, and swings of emotion. The emotions that we feel are rendered more profound by the fact that the background to the actions of these people is tinged with an historical inevitability. Further to this, the more original the method of expression, the more the recollection of our emotional swings will transcend mere amusement or escapism and become etched in our mind and body in the form of the artistic impression that the film has created.

In short, there are three aspects that the 15 films in this year’s competition share that are marvelous to behold: a thorough-going reflection on the nature of human beings; the imprint of the current era; and the director’s individuality on full display as it sublimates this modernity into art.

The protagonists frantically struggle to escape from an extraordinary situation—or from a humdrum situation that refuses to become extraordinary. The dejection of a young Turkish girl smoldering in a suburban rest-stop, the tribulations of a Chinese woman who yearns to better herself but is consequently seen as a bad wife, and the struggles of a Danish cook who is on a ship that is hijacked—in each case the backdrop to the situation is probably significantly informed by trends in the global economy. Behind the misery of the little girl in America who is shunted back and forth between her divorced parents, and the bewilderment of the Korean boy when his mother (whom he had believed dead) suddenly appears, there lies without doubt the current trend towards dysfunction in the family.

This year’s competition is a celebration of the directors of these 15 films, who have presented themes and characters befitting the current times as of 2012, successfully integrated them into films with universal appeal so as to qualify for the final fifteen, and flawlessly demonstrated their own individual artistic prowess.

Programming Director The 25th TIFF Competition Section

Yoshi Yatabe

Special Screenings

The Special Screenings section provides an early opportunity to view hotly anticipated films that are about to be released. This year, Cirque du Soleil: Worlds Away , produced by James Cameron and directed by Andrew Adamson, will be screened to officially open the festival. This will be the world premiere of a work that breaks new ground in 3D cinema by incorporating typical programs by the world famous Cirque du Soleil. This year will also see the screening of the special opening film entitled Japan in a Day . This is a collection of video submissions filmed on March 11 of this year, which have been compiled into a single film. It is a significant film in that it conveys a message that should go out from Tokyo to the entire world—that Japan is well on the road to recovery. The official closing of the festival will be marked by a screening of Trouble with the Curve, starring Clint Eastwood. In this magnificent film, which is both meaningful and profound, a baseball scout in his twilight years takes his estranged daughter along with him on one last recruiting trip. In celebration of our 25th edition, we have attempted to choose a variety of different types of film. We hope that you will greatly enjoy this wide-ranging selection.

Programming Director The 25th TIFF Special Screenings Section

Nobushige Toshima

Winds of Asia-Middle East

For the sixth year running, the slogan for the Winds of Asia-Middle East section is “More widely than ever, stronger than ever!”. This year we have once again assembled a large collection of superb films from a vast area stretching from nearby East Asia to the far-off reaches of the Middle East and Central Asia. Which of them will claim the prize for the best Asian film? Asian filmmaking is currently displaying vigor and growth in boundless proportions. With the steady increase in the volume of films produced in Asia—especially in Korea, China, Taiwan, India, and Turkey—it is no longer unusual for Asian films to win prizes at the most renowned international film festivals. Against this dynamic backdrop, this year’s Winds of Asia-Middle East section will showcase a panorama of new works and will also include two special-feature programs that shed light on the past and present of Southeast Asian films: the first of these highlights the onward march of the Indonesian film industry, which has produced a procession of notable filmmakers and films, while the second lays bare the horror of Cambodia—an illusory fantasy that engulfed an entire generation in the 1960s. Please keep a look out for these segments. A book entitled “Asia Eiga no Mori—Shin Seiki no Eiga Chizu”, published in Japanese only; the title translated as “The Forest of Asian Cinema—a Guide to the New Era of Films” has been published by Sakuhinsha. It covers many Asian films—including some that have appeared in the Winds of Asia-Middle East section in previous years. Japanese readers will find that this book will greatly enhance their appreciation of the films in the Winds of Asia-Middle East section.

Programming Director The 25th TIFF Winds of Asia-Middle East Section

Kenji Ishizaka

Winds of Asia-Middle East - Film Panorama of Asia-Middle East

Please enjoy the fresh winds that blow over the vast area from our neighbors, Korea and China, to as far as the Middle East.

Winds of Asia-Middle East - Indonesian Express: Nugroho, Edwin and Riza

Three directors (Nugroho, Edwin and Riza), who drive the booming Indonesian film industry which has produced over 100 films per year, will be scrutinized, with a symposium.   Special Cooperation: The Japan Foundation

Winds of Asia-Middle East - Discovering Asian Cinema: Golden Slumbers of the Cambodian film history

In the 1960s before the Pol Pot regime Cambodia was a major horror film country with extensive distribution networks covering the whole of the South East Asia! Phantom masterpieces have been revived to take you through the unknown history of Asian movies, with a symposium.

Japanese Eyes

Cries of joy and a sense of giddiness marked the start of the selection of Japanese films for screening at this year’s festival, thanks to a significantly larger number of excellent candidates than in previous years.

Within the Japanese film industry as a whole, the dynamism of Japanese film production has been spectacular since the latter half of the 1990s. At the same time, many people probably feel deep down that Japanese cinema is becoming sharply polarized into major productions on the one hand and independent films on the other. Now that film is a digital medium and films can even be completely produced on a PC at home, it is expected that the independentfilm sector will grow even more.

The Japanese Eyes Section is intended to lend active support to these independent films, unearth individuals with unique talent, and popularize their work at home and abroad.

In this year’s program we will be screening many films that exude the joy of film production—including profound works by heavyweight directors in areas which they are uniquely equipped to handle, and fresh new works produced by young artists who have received extensive help. These include short films, medium-length films, and documentaries.

Please come and experience the joy of discovering independent Japanese film in Tokyo.


The WORLD CINEMA section features films that have been popular at international film festivals held this year – such as Rotterdam, Berlin, Cannes, Venice and Toronto. As a general rule, they are new titles by renowned directors for which the theatrical release in Japan were still undecided as of end of August, 2012. The collection of films is a mustsee for film lovers: award-winning films, a controversial film by a unique director and a documentary by a legendary director. This all adds up to a tidal wave of films from around the world in 2012—savor them to the full in real time in Tokyo.

natural TIFF supported by TOYOTA

This year’s natural TIFF section retains the central theme from previous years of “symbiosis with nature,” but also focuses more closely on the harsh reality of current environmental problems. In the five years since the natural TIFF section was established, the Earth’s natural environment has deteriorated even further, and the screen images underscore the fact that our environmental problems are becoming even more serious. We are faced with unremitting reality as the beautiful South Sea Islands submerge before our very eyes as a result of global warming and the worldwide waste problem threatens to significantly reduce the lifespan of the planet. Even as we contemplate our environmental problems, however, we still always wind up with a solid sense of the beauty of nature on Earth, the cultures that mankind has spawned, and the abundance of living creatures with which we co-exist. Time and again we are moved by the wonder of Italian shepherds living in harmony with animals and nature, or the beauty of the crystalclear tones of yodeling echoing in the Swiss mountains. For the sake of the wonders that our planet bestows on us, the Tokyo International Film Festival will be attempting to convey the following message through film: that we must face up squarely to our environmental problems and cherish the priceless cultures that the Earth and mankind have produced. At this critical turning point marked by the fifth edition of this section, we will be presenting eight powerful documentaries on the themes of nature, mankind, and environmental problems—each of them overflowing with a sense of love for this Earth.

Special Presentation – Raymond Chow Special All Night Screening

To honor the achievement of Hong Kong’s leading producer, Raymond Chow, the TIFF is awarding him the Special Appreciation Award this year. Three of his films will be screened throughout the night to commemorate the occasion. Jackie and Jiangshi (hopping ghost), who took the 1980s by storm, come back to the screen once more!

Special Presentation – Corman's Way

One of Hollywood’s most gifted masters of filmmaking, Roger Corman will serve as Jury President for the International Competition at the 25th TIFF. Three films will be screened all night among more than 550 films he produced and fifty others he directed in a career spanning nearly 60 years.

TIFF in Nihombashi

From classics that have association with Nihombashi to new documentaries that look at various ways of “being Japanese”, Kaneto Shindo’s masterpiece that pursues the image of the Japanese, and the recent much-talked about hit film that looks at the way one Japanese person ended his life, will be screened over three days. Japanese mind will be closely scrutinised in Nihombashi.

Special Programs and Allied-Events Lineup

Bunka-Cho Film Week 2012

"Bunka-Cho Film Week" will award excellent documentaries, and individuals in recognition of their long years of distinguished service to the film industry. The project will also hold symposiums and talk events to offer opportunities for people involved with films in differing capacities to gather together.。

[Date] 10.20 Sat - 10.27 Sat
[Venue] Roppongi Hills, Cinemart Roppongi
[URL] http://bunka-cho-filmweek.jp/

Minato Screening

The Minato Screening, a favorite of young and old,as well as with families, is a co - host program by TIFF and Minato City Committee composed of local community members and merchants. Do not miss the Live Voice-over Screenings.

[Date] 10.20 Sat / 10.27 Sat
[Venue] TOHO CINEMAS Roppongi Hills, Roppongi Hills Arena

U. S. -Japan Film Academy

Jim Whitaker, one of the most celebrated Hollywood movie makers, is coming to share his latest film and discuss what it takes to be a filmmaker in Hollywood.

[Date] 10.22 Mon
[Venue] Roppongi Academyhills 49 Tower Hall
[URL] http://connectusa.jp/

25th Tokyo International Women's Film Festival: Finale

Tokyo International Women's Film Festival, which started in 1985 to produce Japanese female directors, will come to a close after this year. We have lined up 3 films that are worthy of the finale. We thank you for your support over the years and look forward to seeing you at the venue.

[Date] 10.21 Sun
[Venue] Instituto Cervantes de Tokio
[URL] http://www.tiwff.com/

TIFF / Tohoku project - JAPAN IN A DAY, a single strong step which links us to the future through "The Power of Films, Now!"

Featuring the special opening film, Japan in a Day, panel discussion will be held by linking the Tohoku site and Tokyo sites (Roppongi Hills). One year since "that day", what is conveyed by this moment in time worldwide.

[Date] 10.22 Mon
[Venue] Roppongi Academyhills 49 Tower Hall , Tohoku University Aobayama Campas

Symposium on Motion-Picture Filming

A two-part symposium will be held on the subject of cinematography. The topics discussed will be the respective outlooks for film and digital cinematography in the future, and the latest developments in digital cinema, such as the 4K image format.

[Date] 10.25 Thu
[Venue] Roppongi Academyhills 49 etc.
[URL] http://cweb.canon.jp/cinema-eos/index.html

The Forest of the Asian Cinema

Special screenings in commemoration of the publication of "The Forest of the Asian Cinema" (Sakuhinsha), a full-scale guide book about Asia films. Many films screened at the past TIFF will be shown.

[Date] 10.2 Tue~10.13 Sat
[Venue] Athénée Français Cultural Center
[URL] http://www.athenee.net/culturalcenter


Three masterpieces of Masayuki Suo (film director) are going to be shown on Oct 8th. Mr. Suo and many movie stars are going to show up in the talk event on this day.

[Date] 10.8 Mon
[URL] www.tsuino-shintaku.jp

Korean Cinema Week 2012

Korean Cinema Week marks its 12th year since it started in 2001. Excellent and latest Korean films will be screened again this year from a variety of genres that show the charm of Korean films, most of which are being screened for the first time in Japan.

[Date] 10.20 Sat - 10.23 Tue
[Venue] Korean cultural center Hanmadang Hall
[URL] http://www.koreanculture.jp/

Short Shorts Film Festival & Asia "Focus on Asia" & Workshop

A special screening of selected Asian and Japanese short films that have been introduced in the past Short Shorts Film Festival & Asia will be held along with a filmmaking workshop.

[Date] 10.25 Thu - 10.28 Sun *The Workshop will be held on 28.
[Venue] Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography
[URL] http://www.shortshorts.org/

China Film Week in Tokyo 2012

In this commemorative year, the 40th Anniversary of the Normalization of Diplomatic Relations between Japan and China, China Film Week in Tokyo 2012 will be held in October.

[Date] 10.20 Sat~10.25 Thu
[Venue] Tokyo
[URL] http://cjiff.net/

Future Line-up Collection of Tokyo International Film Festival

An exciting line-up presentation by all film distributors involved in the "Eiga-kan he ikou" executive committee. This event will stimulate the movie-going market and promote interest in TIFF.

[Date] 10.25 Thu 15:00~
[Venue] TOHO CINEMAS Roppongi Hills Screen2
[URL] http://www.eigakan.org/movies/top

Tanabe-Benkei Film Festival 2012

The film competition is being held for young auteurs. We appoint film world experts and those who hold Kinema Junpo's first grade film certification as the special judges.

[Date] 11.2 Fri - 11.4 Sun
[Venue] Kinan Cultural Center
[URL] http://www.tbff.jp/

Polish Film Festival in Japan 2012

An exciting series of screenings of numerous digit ally re s to re d Polis h films , featuring Andrzej Munk, exquisitely selected by Director Jerzy Skolimowski, a long-time favorite of the TIFF.

[Date] 11.24 Sat- 12.7 Fri
[Venue] Theatre Image Forum

CineGrid@TIFF 2012

This event demonstrates and discusses the state-of-the-art collaboration technology, network-based workflow and archiving for current and future digital contents creation by world-leading people.

[Date] 10.23 Tue
[Venue] Roppongi Academyhills 49 Tower Hall , Tohoku University Aobayama Campas
[URL] http://www.cinegrid.org/

Economic Contribution of the Japanese Film and Television Broadcast Industry

Movies’ economic contribution to society will be examined. Panel discussions will be based on the survey, research and analysis, which was conducted this year by Mitsubishi Research Institute. Direct contribution, indirect effect and future prospects will be discussed.

[Date] 10.22 Mon
[Venue] Roppongi Academyhills 49 Auditorium

Regional Cooperation between Hong Kong and Japan

The case study provides the latest information about Hong Kong's contents & entertainment industry and the cooperation model between Hong Kong and Japan, especially Sapporo and Kyushu areas.

[Date] 10.23 Tue
[Venue] Hotel Nikko Tokyo

JFC Locations Fair 2012

This is an annual gathering of regional film commissions throughout Japan. A presentation of attractive locations and matching seminar for regional cities and filmmakers will be held during the fair.

[Date] 10.24 Wed
[Venue] Roppongi Academyhills 49 Tower Hall
[URL] http://www.japanfc.org/

Green Energy Festa in TIFF

Significance of popularizing renewable energy and the system to facilitate it will be discussed, with the participants through short films in the symposium.

[Date] 10.27 Sat
[Venue] Roppongi Academyhills 49 Tower Hall
[URL] http://www.enecho.meti.go.jp/saiene/kaitori/index.html

KEIRIN.JPThe 25th Tokyo International Film Festival will be held with funds provided by Japan Keirin Association.TIFF History
24th Tokyo International Film Festival(2011)