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Japan, 2007, 137 Minute Running Time
Genre/Subjects: Asian, Drama
Programs: Contemporary World Cinema, New Directors ShowcaseLanguage: Japanese English Subtitles
DIRECTOR: Nami Iguchi
Producer: Yoshihiro Nataga, Toshikazu NishigayaEditor: Nami Iguchi, Noriko Masuhara, Atsushi UnnoScreenwriter: Yuka Honcho, Nami IguchiCinematographer: Akihiko SuzukiPrincipal Cast: Hiromi Nagasaku, Kenichi Matsuyama, Yu Aoi, Shugo Oshinari
Mirume is a nineteen-year-old student at a small-town art school where Yuri, twenty years his senior, teaches lithography. Following chance meetings, they become enmeshed in a romantic liaison, and Mirume proves an eager learner under the tutelage of the free-spirited Yuri. But as his ardor warms, her feelings cool. Mirume finds comfort in the company of classmate En, who encourages his love affair even as she harbors a secret crush on him—and even as she herself is the unwitting object of the affections of Domoto, Mirume’s likewise tongue-tied best friend. When Yuri suddenly stops coming to school, Mirume is driven to seek her out at home, where he is startled to learn the realities of her life.
Based on Naocola Yamazaki’s eponymous novel, Sex Is No Laughing Matter is a mischievous dramedy that echoes The Graduate as it turns still-common assumptions about May-December relationships on their heads. Director Nami Iguchi (The Cat Leaves Home) collaborated with screenwriter Yuka Honcho to create a narrative that blurs the line between farce and drama, thereby getting at the ordinary truths beneath not-so-ordinary love affairs. Casting against type, Iguchi put glamorous young Japanese stars in the roles of the insecure, inexperienced students whose gestures and expressions reveal what they cannot say.
Asian Art Coordinating Council
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