New York Japan CineFest Part I

Article by William Kustiono
Photo credit by Niko

On June 7, 2013, Asia Society presented New York Japan CineFest (NYJCF). This Japan CineFest features Independent Japanese Movies along with the film producers. NYJCF will screen 16 independent films for two days. The Festival was divided into three programs. This event was co-presented by Asia Society and Mar Creation, Inc. The event started from Friday, June 7,2013 to Saturday, June 8, 2013.

The two day film festival focused on mostly short films with Japanese theme, directors, and/or actors, introducing the genre of pop culture, tradition, and discovering new talent through filmmaking. This year NYJCF welcomes the selected short films from Sapporo International Short Film Festival as well as Japanese filmmakers living in the U.S.A to support their artistries and opportunities.

On Friday session there was one program presented. Program 1 features short films by US-based directors. The film ranges from drama, thriller, animation, to war films, these award-winning shorts offer rich insights into the creativity and imagination of filmmakers based in the US. Program attended by filmmakers. Sapporo Beer sponsors the event reception.


Two brothers, one car, and a strange Japanese friend are perfect ingredients for a thriller about a hypnotism that goes awry. The film is directed by Victor Tadashi Suárez. The film won the Columbia University National Undergraduate Film Festival for Best Picture, Best Acting, Audience Choice and also Naperville International Film Festival for Best Student Film.


The movie tells about the peaceful life of an elderly Japanese couple in Los Angeles has their life interrupted by Alzheimer’s disease. The film is directed by Patrick Dickinson. The film has won Ivy Film Festival for Best Graduate Film and Grand Jury Award and 2013 Student Emmy Awards for Outstanding Drama Silver Award


It is a promotional video for the School of Visual Arts, directed by Who-Fu. This interesting animation uses different styles to explore the theme of “idea.”

The Bridge

The film is about using the technology of human cloning, a man pushes the ethical boundary to be reunited with his deceased wife. The movie is directed by Hiroo Takaoka


After losing his home due to a natural disaster, a little boy befriends a seas turtle on a small island. This movie is directed by Eric Bates


The movie talks about a Japanese American schoolteacher preparing a treat for his students as a reward for good behavior. The movie is directed by Thomas Takemoto-Chock

The Hirsaki Players

The opening night of a Japanese play in New York becomes a tug of war between an up-and-coming Japanese playwright/director and his famous and aging father who is the uncooperative lead actor. The movie is directed by Jeff Sousa. The movie has won Beijing International Movie Festival for Golden Duck Award for Best Short Narrative and Sonoma International Film Festival for Best Dramatic Short Film.

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