KAZUHIRO SODA’S OBSERVATIONAL DOC ‘INLAND SEA’ – CINEMA DU REEL REVIEW

INLAND SEA // ROCK SALT RELEASING
After success at Paris’ 40th Cinéma du Réel International Film Festival, Kazuhiro Soda is taking his silent, black + white observational documentary to this year’s 65th Sydney Film Festival this June.

Los Angeles, CA – May 22, 2018 –Inland Sea shows another consequence of the departure of the younger generation: the village is depopulated.” – Sancho Asia, Christophe Jegu.

World-famous Japanese filmmaker, Kazuhiro Soda, took this silent, black and white Observational Film #7 ‘INLAND SEA’ (‘Minatomachi’) has just competed in Paris’ 40th Cinéma du Réel International Film Festival and is set to compete in the 65th Sydney Film Festival this June.

Produced by Kiyoko Kashiwagi, ‘INLAND SEA’ takes place in a small village called Ushimado, which has been deserted by the era of modernization in post-war Japan by documentation the remaining inhabitants of the village. “Ushimado is one of those villages in Japan, but also in the Western world, which are becoming increasingly rare, inhabited by a community where neighbors are not strangers, but people we know personally, or even intimately,” observed Sancho Asia’s Christophe Jegu.

Soda documents Wai-chan, the 86-year-old fisherman who continues his lifetime routine of “not letting go of his net. He continues do to everything from A to Z by himself, from repairing the nets to selling his catches at the village auction. He does he job with application, only more slowly and with more difficult than in the past,” (Jegu), who dreams about retirement. Soda observes the “late-stage elderly” Koso-san, who runs a small seafood store left by her deceased husband, providing leftovers to the many stray cats as well as Kumi-san, an 84-year-old villager who wanders the shores. “Like an echo of Mental, a 2008 documentary work on psychiatric hospital. [Kumi-san] assures that her blind son was taken away against her will to be put in an institution; a situation that leads her to have thoughts that are fatal at the end of an existence that has not always been easy,” observed Jegu. He added, “The filmmaker is here even more present, as a catalyst for action, than in his previous documentaries.”

“If Kazuhiro Soda draws the sad conclusion of a community with close social ties disappearing, the people he has chosen to follow give by their dynamism a sacred lesson to younger generations. If the sinner and the fishmonger are in such a form, they must in pursuit of an intense professional activity,” wrote Jegu.

Soda, whom is celebrated for his observational documentaries that adhere to his “Ten Commandments” (influenced by Frederick Wiseman) – ones that prohibit him from doing pre-shoot research / writing a synopsis before filming – has formed a revolutionary type of documentary, one in which he spontaneously rolls the camera, but captures something deeper – a village and their community facing abandonment and being forgotten. As Jegu expressed, the film’s “Scenes [were] filmed with a look full of humanity by the filmmaker.”

Kazuhiro Soda’s “Ten Commandments”:

1. No research.

2. No meetings with subjects.

3. No scripts.

4. Roll the camera yourself.

5. Shoot for as long as possible.

6. Cover small areas deeply.

7. Do not set up a theme or goal before editing.

8. No narration, super-imposed titles, or music.

9. Use long takes.

10. Pay for the production yourself.

Andréa Picard, Artistic Director of Cinéma du Réel raved, “With its sensitive approach and gentle curiosity, ‘INLAND SEA’ approaches a certain timelessness. The generous and emphatic engagement that emerges from the film is both moving and beautiful.”

Amongst the many talented films from all corners of the world, the 2018 Sydney Film Festival (SFF) will display the latest from distinguished Japanese filmmaker, Kazuhiro Soda (‘Campaign’, ‘Mental’, ‘Oyster Factory’) and his black and white observational documentary, ‘INLAND SEA’ (‘Minatomachi’). SFF will take place from Wednesday, June 6th – Sunday, June 17th for the festival’s 65th year.

ROCK SALT RELEASING is Hollywood’s newest independent sales and distribution label spearheaded by Acquisitions Executive Daisy Hamilton and Dean Fernando at TriCoast Worldwide. ROCK SALT RELEASING has acquired the worldwide rights for prominent Japanese director Kazuhiro Soda’s (‘CAMPAIGN’, ‘MENTAL’, ‘OYSTER FACTORY’) black and white observational film, ‘INLAND SEA’ (2018, 122 min, Observational Film #7). For more information about ‘INLAND SEA’, please visit: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt6869686/.

For ‘INLAND SEA’ press inquiries, please contact jenna@tricoast.com

INLAND SEA (2018, 122 min.) Directed by Kazuhiro Soda. Editor: Kazuhiro Soda. Cinematographer: Kazuhiro Soda. Original Music: Kazuhiro Soda. Japan/USA. Silent. Laboratory X, TriCoast Worldwide, Rock Salt Releasing.

PRODUCTION COMPANY: Laboratory X – Kiyoko Kashiwagi, Kazuhiro Soda.

ROCK SALT RELEASING: Daisy Hamilton and Dean Fernando.

About TriCoast Worldwide: TriCoast Worldwide is a premium international sales agent, representing the best of US and international films at all the major film markets. Sister company to TriCoast Entertainment and TriCoast Studios, the company is located at the Studio facility in Culver City, Los Angeles.

Founded by: Strathford Hamilton and Marcy Levitas Hamilton.

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