(Click the + sign next to each film to view the trailer.)
+ The Great Happiness Space: Tale of an Osaka Love Thief - Jake Clennell (Documentary/Drama)
One of the truest documentaries about human nature that you will ever see. The Great Happiness Space follows male hosts while they work at Rakkyo Café and the trials that come with the line of work. You’ll start this film not feeling much for these men but by the end you will relate more to them than you know.
(this film has no trailer that I can find, message me if you need help finding the film itself)
"Just get through the goddamn day." George is a man that people expect things from, and he always rises to meet those expectations. He could find the strength every day until it was taken from him. When his secret gay lover dies in a car accident, George is left with himself, his thoughts and the melodrama of the 1960’s.
Buffalo ‘66 is a film about Billy Brown. Recently paroled, he only has one thing on his mind: revenge. When he sets out to fulfill this wish, things go according to plan..to an extent. What transpires during the night leaves Billy as well as the viewer flabbergasted.
(special thanks to yakuzadryclean for showing me this film)
When I first saw Stay in 2005, Ryan Gosling was still relatively unknown. When I left the theater, I went back a week later and watched it again. The movie focuses on Henry Letham (Gosling), a distraught and suicidal art major and his psychiatrists attempt to understand why he wishes to end his life. Speaking in riddles half of the time, the movie soon turns into a mystery as to why this man wants redemption so bad. What did he do? Does he truly deserve to die? You’ll only get the answer if you watch the film.
Survive Style 5+ is the most fun you’ll have watching a film in a long time. It’s crazy sequences are still stuck in my mind. The story follows 5 groups (or a single person) of people as their stories eventually intersect. A man that can’t seem kill his wife, although he buries her over and over she comes back from the grave with a vengeance each time, a hitman and his translator as they travel to Tokyo to take care of business, a commercial executive that thinks up funny commercials for her boss, a group of mischievous guys that get into all sorts of predicaments, and finally a family who’s father has been hypnotized into thinking he is a bird. Don’t miss out on this awesome, wacky film!
White is a wealthy professor. Black is a poor man of god. The two collide when White decides to end his life by throwing himself in front of The Sunset Limited, a subway train that makes it’s rounds every day. Black takes White back to his shabby apartment in the ghetto and has a discussion of religion, life, death, and everything in between. One of the greatest play-to-film adaptations I have ever seen. Bravo.
Lilya is a 16 year old girl that lives in Estonia. Her only friend is a boy that is even younger than her that has a crush on her. Soon after her mother abandons her for a mail-order-bride service she is left alone with her fantasies of a better life. One day she falls in love with a man that promises to take her away from the awful place she lives and give her a new life, but we soon find out his plans were much more sinister.
One of my favorite newer films, Enter The Void follows Oscar, a drug dealer living in Tokyo, and his sister Linda. The film is shot completely through the perspective of Oscar’s eyes or perception. When Oscar goes to make a deal at The Void, a popular club for drug users, tragedy occurs and his life is ended. Shortly after we see his body lying on the bathroom floor, lifeless. Then the colors shift and we are transported to another place, seeing what becomes of his sister and his friend after his death through dream-like sequences which are his soul floating through Tokyo. Definitely one of the ‘trippiest’ movies you will ever watch.
I Stand Alone is about a butcher, we never learn his name, for it is not important. What is important is the situation he finds himself in. He is married to an overweight woman and living together with her mother. He despises them, on top of that she is pregnant. As his mind begins to break down, he lashes out violently against various people and factions of society, questioning his own existence, and trying to become reconnected with his estranged daughter that he left in a mental institution so long ago. One of the harshest films on this list next to Lilya 4-Ever, I Stand Alone is less of a story about this butcher and more a story about the evil thing waiting inside all of us, waiting for the opportune moment to take control.