Hachimiri Madness: Japanese Indies From the Punk Years
At the same time that the Japanese studios were going into tailspin decline at the end of the 1970s, a rude burst of amateur cinematic anarchy was erupting from the underground. This new jishu eiga, or “autonomous film,” was a cinema by and for outsiders, many of them shooting run-and-gun-style in the streets on cheap 8mm film (hachimiri in Japanese). The jishu film movement, which found a home after 1977 at the Pia Film Festival in Tokyo, was the cinematic analog of the experiments in extreme independent music happening in Japan at the same time, and would act as the incubator for a generation of renegade talents like Sogo Ishii, Sion Sono, and Masashi Yamamoto. A barrage of youthful energy, anti-authoritarian rage, and go-for-broke moviemaking, Hachimiri Madness sifts through the blast zone rubble of this creative explosion to present some of the most pungent examples of jishu filmmaking, accompanying Metrograph’s runs of Yamamoto’s What’s Up Connection and Robinson’s Garden, and Suwa’s 2/Duo. Protective goggles strongly advised.
Series materials restored from the 8mm print original positive to 2K digital, with newly translated English subtitles by Pia Film Festival in collaboration with the Forum of the Berlin International Film Festival and the Hong Kong International Film Festival at the Tokyo Laboratory Ltd.