おやすみ (Oyasumi): A Collection of Japanese Canadian Short Films
Thursday, May 25 2023 | 7:00 PM
The Cinematheque | 1131 Howe St., Vancouver
Tickets $14 | Buy Now!
Powell Street Festival Society is proud to join the Cinematheque in co-presenting おやすみ (Oyasumi), a special evening featuring 12 Japanese Canadian short films curated by Natalie Murao. This screening will be followed by a Q&A with filmmakers in attendance.
From the program guide:
おやすみ (oyasumi) – or “goodnight” in Japanese – is often the last thing you hear before you close your eyes and drift off into darkness. おやすみ stems from the verb 休む (yasumu) which means “to take a break’ or “to be absent”. It implies a moment of rest, a moment to pause, a moment when no one is there. This program brings together 12 short films that demonstrate the many definitions of おやすみ while highlighting the past 30 years of Japanese Canadian filmmaking. This collection (not a retrospective!) reveals stories of intergenerational memories, unspoken histories, and the process of healing. Although bittersweet in their themes, there is a comfort in these films coming together – like a kiss on the forehead as you fall asleep.
Films in this program include English and Japanese dialogue. All films will have either subtitles or open captions in English. Read full details on this program on The Cinematheque’s website.
Tickets are being sold directly through the Cinematheque. Purchase online now to avoid disappointment at the door!
This event will start promptly at 7:00 PM; arrive early to allow time to purchase tickets, grab snacks from the lobby concessions stand, and settle in.
General Admission: $14, Seniors: $12, Students: $10. See the Cinematheque for full details.
About the Curator
Natalie Murao is a yonsei (fourth generation) Japanese Canadian filmmaker and educator. Her work explores themes of generational disconnect, personal memory, and communication. She aims to expand the notion of Asian diasporic cinema by creating an in-betweenness of styles that embody the diaspora itself.
She received a BFA in Film Production from Simon Fraser University. Her graduating film, FLOATING LIGHT (2017), won the ShortWork Student Award at Whistler Film Festival. Her follow-up film, NO MORE PARTIES (2020), played at festivals such as Sundance, TIFF Next Wave, and Palm Springs Shortfest. It was exhibited online through the digital TIFF Bell Lightbox. Her latest film and first documentary, BLUE GARDEN (2022), is currently on the festival circuit.
Natalie has received mentorship through Sundance Ignite, VIFF Catalyst, and Experimental Forest Films. In tandem with filmmaking, she has facilitated educational programs for local institutes such as The Cinematheque and VIFF.
2023. Meredith Hama-Brown. 6 min. @meredithhamabrown
A woman grieving the recent loss of her partner has a mysterious alien encounter in her backyard.
2022. Kaho Yoshida. 2 min. @kahoanimation
Tired of being talked at by men, a woman takes a sensual trip with unusual friends.
2022. Sophia Wolfe. 8 min. @maiwolfe
頂 (itadaku), meaning to receive, accept, or take, is a meditative ritual and an attempt to connect with the ancestors.
2020. Cindy Mochizuki. 2 min. @cindy_mochizuki
Artist Cindy Mochizuki asks her mother about the three-legged mermaid-like creature known as amabie.
In the Shadow of the Pines
2020. Anne Koizumi. 8 min. @annekoizumi
A filmmaker reflects on the childhood shame she felt about her immigrant father and how it shaped her identity.
2019. Yuko Fedrau. 8 min. @yukofedrau
Local drag artist and mother of House of Rice Shay Dior introduces us to RICECAKE, Vancouver’s queer Asian dance party.
2017. Mayumi Yoshida. 10 min. @immyyoume
When a struggling artist returns to Japan for her grandmother’s funeral, a staggering family secret upends everything she’s ever wanted out of life and love.
2017. Kodai Yanagawa. 5 min. kodaiyanagawa.com
Lush plants mysteriously grow through the walls and a man is transported into the forest of his memory.
Fish in Barrel
2009. Randall Okita. 8 min. @randallokita
The struggles of a young man facing his demons erupt into visions that question what lies below the surface.
Advisory: Implied suicide
Yellow Sticky Notes
2007. Jeff Chiba Stearns. 6 min. @meditatingbunny
A visual self-reflection using the same yellow sticky notes that consumed a filmmaker’s life and blinded him to major world events.
Advisory: Gun violence
Sayonara Super 8
2006. Pia Yona Massie. 6 min. pia-yona-massie.com
Personal archival footage is used to ask questions about the fragile nature of memory, human relationships, and the foibles of the medium itself.
Minoru: Memory of Exile
1992. Michael Fukushima. 19 min. @michaelfukushima
In a blend of hand-drawn animation and archival materials, Minoru and his son, director Michael Fukushima, narrate their family’s internment, deportation and eventual return to Canada.
Advisory: Racism and internment
This event takes place at The Cinematheque in Downtown Vancouver, located at 1131 Howe St.