Kazuhiro Soda, Japan, 2018, 122 min.
Presented by Penn Cinema & Media Studies
With filmmaker Kazuhiro Soda in attendance!
Wai-chan is one of the last remaining fishermen in Ushimado, a small village in Seto Inland Sea, Japan. At the age of 86, he still fishes alone on a small boat to make his living, dreaming about retirement. Kumi-san is an 84-year-old villager who wanders around the shore every day. She believes a social welfare facility “stole” her disabled son to receive subsidy from the government. A “late-stage elderly,” Koso-san runs a small seafood store left by her deceased husband. She sells fish to local villagers and provides leftovers to stray cats.
Forsaken by the era of modernization of post-war Japan, Ushimado, a town so beloved by film director Shohei Imamura that he set two of his films there (Black Rain, Dr. Akagi), is rapidly aging and declining. Its rich, ancient culture and the tight-knit community are also on the verge of disappearing.
Portrayed in black and white photography, this latest observational documentary by Kazuhiro Soda (Campaign, Mental, Oyster Factory) poetically depicts the twilight days of a village and its people by the dreamlike Inland Sea.