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Online Screening 2016




Phillip Noyce


Worked as an actor in several Japanese film productions after university. Since 2000, he has worked primarily as a director of commercials, music videos and documentaries. Matsunaga followed his good friend, artist and gender bender Pyuupiru from 2001 to 2008 for his documentary Pyuupiru (2009). Pieta in the Toilet (2015) was nominated for the Grand Prix at the Jeonju International Film Festival, and won the Best New Actor Award in the Japan Academy Prize, and screened at the International Film Festival Rotterdam and Tokyo International Film Festival.

All MATSUNAGA Daishi films

Lowlife Love

2015 / JAPAN / Feature / 111 min

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Tetsuo (Kiyohiko Shibukawa) is a lowlife. A film director with a small indie hit many years back, yet he has never gotten any further as he refuses to go against his 'artistic integrity'. He's a real loser. Despite being in his late 30s, he still lives with his mother and sister, borrowing money off them and scrounging from all he comes in contact with. This includes his best friend Mamoru (Yoshihiko Hosoda), who makes porn films with him for dodgy characters in order to make money, as well as the film actors' school they've setup to exploit their students as well as for him to sleep with wannabe actresses. He's a real jerk. Then one day two new students come to his school: Minami (Maya Okano), a naive and fresh girl from the countryside who wants to be an actress and Ken (Shugo Oshinari), a scriptwriter who has been living overseas. Tetsuo sees something in Minami and feels she has what it takes to be a real star and Ken has a brilliant script which could be the fantastic new project which would relaunch his career as a director, with Minami his muse. With the help of Kida (Denden), an unsavory film producer, they strive to turn this project into something tangible, but Minami's ability starts to turn the heads of other film directors such as Kano (Kanji Furutachi) and Shinjo (Kanji Tsuda) and soon Tetsuo's world starts to fall apart at the seams... Will Tetsuo's past exploits catch up to him or will he be able to hold it all together and start afresh?


2011 / JAPAN / Short / 30 min

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Matsunaga’s enthralling documentary Pyuupiru 2001-2008 was one of last year’s(2011) revelations, but it offered few clues as to how the director would fare on a narrative fiction film. Well, he fared magnificently. Despite being only 30 minutes in length, Boys, a tale of bullying and the solace of a woman’s breasts, is a triumph of subtle direction and observation by Tom Mes(Midnight Eye). Great to see Matsunaga’s first stab at fiction after last year’s documentary Pyuupiru 2001-2008. I actually preferred this. For a 30-minute short it manifested a remarkably adept grasp of pacing and plotting, it looked great, and there was an actual sense of purpose to it too. I think we’re seeing a really interesting filmmaker emerging here. (by Jasper Sharp:Midnight Eye)


2015 / JAPAN / Feature / 118 min

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Sayonara is the collaborative brainchild of noted Japanese playwright, Oriza Hirata, and leading robotics engineer, Hiroshi Ishiguro (Osaka University Graduate School of Engineering) who have fused art and science to bring the world its first acting duo starring a human and a robot.
After the original stage production of Sayonara premiered in Tokyo and Osaka, it went overseas to Austria and France to great acclaim and continues to be in high demand for showings around the world. The stage version is being adapted to feature film format for the very first time.
The central character of the android Leona is played by a very human-like robot, Geminoid F, developed by Hiroshi Ishiguro. Her counterpart, Tanya, is a human who lives with the android, and is played by Bryerly Long, reprising her stage role. The unique duo is bolstered by a strong support cast of top Japanese acting talent including Hirofumi Arai, Nijiro Murakami.