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Pockets of Beauty: Japan Indies Film Festival 2020





My friend Mike, who lives in Tokyo, is running the Japan Indies Film Festival this year, in association with the Raindance Festival in London. Mike tells me that the festival was originally going to be held in a theater, but then "all of this" happened... so now it is online.

The trailer above is for "Life of a Geisha", which premiered in 2018 - and Mike says that it was the first film to sell out three showings in all of Raindance history. It is showing again with JIFF, beginning on November 16, here.

I've just looked briefly at some of the films that will be screened, and this looks fantastic! Some of the films are available now for viewing, so I'm going to try to watch a few before the actual festival dates (Nov 16-17 in Japan, 17-18 in the US). I'm not entirely sure what "immersive" means, but these look fascinating.

Here is the full press release:

Good news filmmakers! 

Japan Indies Film Festival will run November 16/17 immediately after our international partner, London's Raindance Film Festival ends (October 28 - November 7). Following government advice, our debut festival will be online only using a state-of-the-art (and very expensive) digital delivery system.

This platform is the exact same platform that is running Cannes, Sundance, Toronto, SXSW and Raindance Film Festival. This is will be Japan’s very first FREE online film festival. We thank Raindance Film Festival for helping us to show your films to the world!

"The JIFF platform is an ideal stepping stone to the very important Japanese audience for independent films. I am delighted that we are able to support this innovative venture with like-minded individuals.” - Elliot Grove, Founder, Raindance | British Independent Film Awards

All films will be available here (sign up now to watch the films for free!): https://bit.ly/2I0pSeU


Mike Rogers

Founder/Program Director

JIFF Japan Indies Film Festival

There is a lot of talk around the world now about how we are in a "spiritual war." And we are. I don't think you even have to come from a religious perspective to see that. The way I see it is, there are two forces battling each other: Creation vs. domination; freedom vs. tyranny; peaceful coexistence vs. violence. As it says at the top of this blog, there is the river, often filled with blood from the violence imposed by one side of humanity–and there are the banks, where all of life happens. Where people create, and trade, and just get on with their lives. 

There are many ways of engaging in this spiritual warfare, but in my view the most powerful way to fight the forces of violence and tyranny and domination is to simply create. To create beauty, and meaning, in the face of all the destruction, the force, the ugliness, and the tremendous efforts being put into dividing us all against each other. The forces of darkness–and that is exactly what we are up against–can inflict a lot of damage, they can kill, they can impoverish, they can destroy. But they cannot stop us from telling our stories and loving the people in our lives and creating beauty wherever we can. There are many ways to fight evil, and I think that this is one of the best. So, if you think so too, go on over to the JIFF site, check out some films, donate to support them if you can, and make a small strike against evil in the world.