Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Another "Yasukuni" Update

VAOJ readers have been following the story about the controversial documentary film "Yasukuni" directed by Li Ying. Now it turns out a movie theater in Tokyo has decided against showing the film for fear of inconveniencing its neighbors.

According to the theater spokesperson, "The film is talked about so much that it may create trouble and we don't want to cause inconvenience to building tenants."

Read more about the story at Japan Today.

Link to "Tokyo cinema decides against screening 'Yasukuni' documentary"

Also in the news today is a story about a teachers' union suing a hotel for canceling a reservation and contract for a venue for their meeting. The hotel canceled because it feared actions against the union from right wing extremist groups. Read more...

Link to Teachers union chief criticizes Prince Hotel for not letting them hold meeting

What is going on here? Businesses are deciding not to let people see controversial films and teachers hold union meetings. Are the lines being drawn? Business to the right? All to avoid inconvenience? Again, what is going on? Big black trucks blast loud music and propaganda not so the people can hear it but to drown out other voices. VAOJ is certainly not hiding its biases, but the major issue here is an unwillingness for dialogue and discussion. And of course visual anthropologists want to see the film... Hopefully coming to a theater near you (Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka) on April 12. Please check your local listing. Or ask a teacher...

Update to the Update (March 26, 2008): Read more about one of the film's producers, Ai Wan, in Japan Today: http://www.japantoday.com/category/entertainment-arts/view/from-china-doll-to-yasukuni-shrine

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