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BFI Japan 2020’s Classics Collection – 5 Must-See Movies

Hideko Takamine in When a Woman Ascends the Stairs (1960)

BFI Player is currently playing host to the excellent Japan 2020 season.

Its Japanese Classics collection showcases great movies from the Golden Ages of the 1930s and 1950s, the post-war generation who shook the system from the 1960s onward, plus the filmmakers who came to prominence in the 1980s and 1990s.

Spanning multiple genres, the collection contains some of the best films ever made. Choosing five you should start with was tough.

But, here is a quintet of movies we think provide a good introduction to the collection…


For more information on BFI Japan 2020, click here

To view Japan 2020 on BFI Player, click here


FLOATING CLOUDS (1955)

We make no apologies for this being the first of two M...

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The Tale of Princess Kaguya

The-Tale-of-Princess-Kaguya---Isao-Takhata,posterDirector: Isao Takahata

Writer: Isao Takahata, Riko Sakaguchi

Cast: Chloe Grace Moretz, James Caan, Mary Steenburgen, Lucy Liu, Darren Criss (English language version), Aki Asakura, Tatasuya Nakadai, Takeo Chii, Nobuko Miyamoto

Cert: U

Running time: 137mins

Year: 2013

    

The lowdown: 80 year old Studio Ghibli co-founder Isao Takahata’s probable swansong happens to be his finest movie. A bold, enchanting, retelling of the one thousand year old Japanese folktale The Bamboo Cutter, it’s as fresh as Frozen and as visually daring as the best of Pixar. Magical, thrilling for all ages and captivating throughout, if Studio Ghibli does shut up shop for good now Hayao Miyazaki has retired, this is a wonderful film to bow out on.

The-Tale-of-Princess-Kaguya---Isao-Takhata,-bamboo-babyThe-Tale-of-Princess-Kaguya---Isao-Takhata,-walking-through-bamboo

The full verdict: Less well-known than Hayao Miyazaki, Isa...

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