The Taste of Tea


THE TASTE OF TEA (Cha no Aji) is the new film by Ishii Katsuhito (SHARK SKIN MAN AND PEACH HIP GIRL). It has Asano Tadanobu in it. You know I’m going to see this.

In his third feature, director Ishii Katsuhito succeeds in creating a live-action version of a new-age manga family. The film alludes to his animated “Chibi-Maruko chan”, although even his diametrically opposed “violent” debut film, “Samehada otoko to Momojiri onna (Shark Skin Man and Peach Hip Girl)” is steeped in new-age thought — right down to Terashima Susumu’s opening monologue. They stem from the same roots. The title undoubtedly signifies “software viewed while savoring one’s own cup of tea”. Hence the giant sunflower (originally “Powers of Ten” material); Little Tempo’s dub is of the same conscious violation. In which case the director’s DVD series “Grasshoppa!” is of these roots as well (of course it is — Grasshoppa Films appears in the opening credits). (REALTOKYO)

It starts today at Cinema Rise in Shibuya. And speaking of Rise, they’ve just opened a new mini-theater around the corner called Rise X. I’ve seen pictures of it in a magazine and it looks really nice, very intimate. It reminded me a lot of the Cafe Parallele in Montreal (tiny theatre/cafe that had about 30 seats; I have fond memories of seing Hal Hartley’s FLIRT there).