The Kirishima Thing

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Kirishima film still
Japan 2012 Rated G 103:00 Japanese with English subtitles

Daihachi Yoshida’s simple yet poignant story explores the human geography and intense hierarchy of Japanese high school in the face of turmoil brought on by the disappearance of the unseen character Kirishima. From the elite athletes to the girls in the school band to the Movie Club nerds, all of the students find their lives in flux as they await the return of the mysterious and nearly legendary title character.

Rumours begin to fly about why Kirishima made his decision, leading to misunderstandings, confusion, and misguided anger amongst his peers. Meanwhile, Ryoya Maeda, head of the film club, decides that this is the time to make the movie of his dreams.

Based on the best-selling novel Kirishima, Bukatsu Yamerutteyo by Ryo Asai (2010), The Kirishima Thing tackles the subject of high school hierarchies and the experience of living in a tightly controlled social environment. Beautifully acted, written, and directed, the film is certainly deserving of the accolades it has received.

– HK