The Land of Hope
Kibou No Kuni
Japan | 2012 | 133 minutes | Sion Sono
Based on the events following the 2011 Tōhoku disaster, a multigenerational rural family is forced to make impossible choices and painful decisions in the aftermath of a devastating earthquake and the resulting nuclear fallout.
May 17, 2013
SIFF Cinema Uptown Festival
|3:00 PM||Date has passed|
May 21, 2013
SIFF Cinema Egyptian
|9:30 PM||Date has passed|
Prolific director Sion Sono, known for focusing on the dark side of Japanese society, departs from his usual subject matter in this naturalistic drama, inspired by true events, about a rural family's struggle to survive the aftermath of the devastating Tōhoku earthquake of March 2011 and the resulting Fukushima nuclear crisis. Set in the fictional prefecture of Nagashima, The Land of Hope follows the plight of farmer Yoichi Ono (Jun Murakami) and his pregnant wife Izumi (Megumi Kagurazaka), whose lives are upended by the earthquake, tsunami, and subsequent nuclear reactor meltdown. While most of Nagashima lies within the 20-kilometer evacuation zone, their property sits just outside the perimeter, forcing the Onos to face an agonizing dilemma about whether to stay and risk becoming contaminated by radiation or to give up the farm that has been in their family for generations. Concerned for their unborn child, the Onos decide to leave while Yoichi's parents stay behind. However, the new, highly urbanized city they move to does not give them much comfort, as Izumi becomes paranoid that the radiation is still following them. Back on the farm, Yoichi's parents face mounting pressure from the authorities to leave, but they decide to stay for reasons that are later revealed. Partially filmed within neighborhoods wiped out by the tsunami or turned into ghost town by fears of radiation, The Land of Hope is a poignant drama about identity, loss, and survival that has the immediacy and realism of a documentary.
Sion Sono is a controversial filmmaker and poet. He was born in Toyokawa, Japan and is best known for his movies and avant-garde poetry performances. Sono has attracted both domestic and international acclaim with his recent run of films, including Cold Fish (Venice Film Festival, 2010) and Guilty of Romance (Cannes Film Festival, 2011).
Sponsored in part by Delta Air Lines, Snoqualmie Tobacco Company & Liquor Store, The Japan Foundation Los Angeles
|Principal Cast:||Isao Natsuyagi, Naoko Otani, Megumi Kagurazaka, Jun Murakami, Hikari Kajiwara|
|Running Time:||133 minutes|
|Producer:||Yuko Shiomaki, Yuji Sadai, Mizue Kunizane|
|Filmography:||Guilty of Romance (2011); Himizu (2011); Cold Fish (2010); Love Exposure (2008); Exte: Hair Extensions (2007); Hazard (2005); Strange Circus (2005); Noriko’s Dinner Table (2005); Suicide Club (2001); Dankon: The Man (1998); Bicycle Sighs (1991)|
|International Sales:||Pictures Dept. Co.Ltd.|