The best movie events right now
Daiei Film Festival
Marking the 75th birthday of film studio Daiei, now known as publishing giant Kadokawa's filmmaking arm, the company's own cinema in Shinjuku rolls out this 21-flick programme featuring the very best of Daiei-produced film. Focusing particularly on movies with female protagonists, the lineup includes Kon Ichikawa's 1960 Cannes Jury Prize winner Odd Obsession, based on Junichiro Tanizaki's novel 'The Key', and three different film adaptations (1949, 1960 and 1967) of 'Naomi' ('Chijin no Ai'), another Tanizaki classic. For the full programme and schedule, see here (in Japanese only).
Catch a movie outdoors on a hot summer evening at Ebisu's Garden Place, where screenings start from 7.30pm on 12 August days. The free films will be shown on a big screen set up in the middle of the complex, with the programme including light fare like Irish musical comedy Sing Street (2016), Giuseppe Tornatore's Oscar-winning Cinema Paradiso (1988) and 2014 documentary Iris, which tells the story of 95-year-old New York fashion icon Iris Apfel – uplifting and harmless fun, in other words.
Alain Delon Programme
In the ’60s and ’70s, French charmer Alain Delon was one of the most popular actors practically everywhere in the world – with the notable exception of the US. The Le Samouraï star was big in Japan too, and the recent announcement of his upcoming retirement made national headlines. Bunkamura's Le Cinéma looks back at Delon's career with this five-film programme, which consists of The Last Adventure (1967), Luchino Visconti's The Leopard (1963), Any Number Can Win (1963), La Piscine (1969) and Swann in Love (1984). Note that all films will be shown with Japanese subtitles only.
Qualite Fantastic! Cinema Collection 2017
Shinjuku's Cinema Qualite holds its annual festival in summer this year, again highlighting an international cast of indie flicks, including a few previously unreleased in Japan. Jim Jarmusch's Gimme Danger, a documentary about the emergence of Iggy Pop's band The Stooges, should be worth catching, perhaps along with Noah Baumbach and Jake Paltrow's 2015 biographical documentary De Palma and Russian war drama Battalion (2015), which tells the story of a women-only unit that fought in World War I. Friends of B-grade horror will want to look out for cult classic Street Trash (1987) and Horrors of Malformed Men (1969), Teruo Ishii's 'ero-guro' creation that's partially based on a story by Edogawa Ranpo. Once released, the full programme can be viewed here (in Japanese only).
Tokyo's best cinemas
Catch a double bill at one of the city's oldest cinemas (over 50 years and counting). Films are shown in a variety of languages, with Hollywood flicks featuring as highly as Japanese movies, all presented on classic 35mm prints. There are only double bills on offer, so set aside an afternoon and make the most of it.