Deep in the Valley 谷中暮色

Official Selection the 59th Berlin International Film Festival 第59回ベルリン映画祭正式招待作品


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All-star cast of Yanaka locals : temple monks, a cemetery caretaker, an Edo carpenter, a local historian...

The film portrays many real Yanakans who work at the cemetery and in artisans’ studios. They include Toyota Kobayashi, a calligraphy master for gravestone inscriptions; Fumio Okamoto, a fifth-generation craftsman of Edo face dolls and matoi (emblem poles for Edo firemen brigades); Yoshiaki Kikuchi, a traditional Edo carpenter (he also supervised the carpentry scenes in the film); Mr. Matsuoka, a twelfth-generation Buddhist monk of Ryogonji Temple; Tatsuya Seki, a local photographer who took photos of the burning of Five-Story Pagoda while a junior high-school student; Hiroshi Kawakami, a bar owner at Hatsune Promenade, the only pre-war wooden arcaded street remaining in Tokyo; Kozo Noike, the president of Yanaka Neighborhood Association; Miyoko Ogawa, a long-time cemetery caretaker at Jozaiji Temple; and local historian Katsuhiro Kato. Their vivid memories of the neighborhood and their first-person accounts of Five-Story Pagoda gave reality and depth to the film.
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