(My Secret Cache)
Dir: Shinobu Yaguchi
83 min., 35mm, 1:1.85, Color, EP
Produktion: Toho Co., Ltd; Pia Corporation Buch: Shinobu Yaguchi, Takuji Suzuki. Kamera: Masahiro Kishimoto. Ton: Noboru Ikeda. Musik: Kuniaki Yagura. Schnitt: Miho Yoneda. Produzenten: Hideyuki Takai, Hiroshi Yanai.
Darsteller: Naomi Nishida (Sakiko), Go Riju (Edogawa), Taketoshi Naito (Morito).
Uraufführung: 15. 2.1997, Cinema Carite, Tokyo.
Weltvertrieb: Toho International Co., Ltd., Hibiya Park Bldg. 8-1, Yuraku-cho, 1-chome, Chiyoda-la, Tokyo, Japan. Tel.: (81-3) 3213 6821, Fax: (81-3) 3213 6825.
Sat 22.02. 11:00 Kino 7 im Zoo Palast Sat 22.02. 21:15 Delphi Sun 23.02. 12:30 Arsenal Mon 24.02. 17:00 Akademie der Künste
One day, the bank is robbed, and Sakiko is taken hostage by two armed robbers who grab five hundred million yen. They drive into Aokigahara Jukai (sea of trees), a vast wilderness area at the foot of Mt. Fuji, and accidentally fall into a ravine. Both robbers are killed, but Sakiko is spared.
Rescued, Sakiko becomes an instant media favorite as the courageous bank robbery victim. The press crowd at her door, but only for a month. She later finds out that the money the robbers took off with has not been recovered. She remembers that a suitcase sunk into a pond before she was rescued. Sakiko finally attains her goal in life. She tells her family about the money, and persuades them to go on a picnic in the Jukai so she may be able to locate the pond. The expedition turns out to be futile.
Lady Luck has not forsaken Sakiko. Watching the TV news one day, Sakiko learns that geologist Morita, a professor at Tamagawa University, is a specialist on Aokigahara Jukai. She immediately goes to the university and meets Prof. Morita and his assistant, Edogawa.
Following Edogawa's advice, Sakiko decides to study geology at the university. She quits the bank, cancels all her bank accounts, gets herself an apartment, and begins studying for the entrance exams. She successfully passes the exams, and plunges into the world of geology, purchasing expensive equipment for research. At the same time, she takes courses in scuba-diving and rock climbing. Naturally, she becomes bankrupt, and unable to pay her tuition or rent, she works at a bar. She participates in swimming meets and rock climbing contests for the prize money.
As Edogawa is visiting her apartment one day, the floor caves in because of the heavy equipment. The landlady is furious and orders all the equipment to be removed. Edogawa is kind enough to borrow a truck from the university to transport the equipment to her parents' house. While Edogawa leaves the truck parked, Sakiko steals it, equipment and all, and heads for the Jukai to put her luck to the final test.
(...) MY SECRET CACHE tells a story about middle-class apathy, obsession with money and feminist self-discovery in contemporary Japan in a grotesquely hilarious fashion.
As the director of the internationally acclaimed Down the Drain, an upbeat comedy about a somnambulistic high school girl, Shinobu Yaguchi creates in this 35 mm debut film another powerful heroine who recklessly takes any risk to get the money. As in Down the Drain, he uses visual puns and narrative irony exquisitely to turn the heroine's serious efforts into an absurd comedy and transforming her hyperactive obsessiveness into a charming slapstick. Enfant terrible of Japanese independent cinema, Yaguchi refers mockingly to an aerial photography of the wilderness from Stanley Kubrick's The Shining and inserts a playful flip cartoon of still images shot by a bank surveillance video. Mixing genres of adventure, crime and films of self-determined women in a B-picture fashion proves Yaguchi's sheer inventiveness as a genuine auteur.
Naomi Nishida, a celebrated model of commercials and fashion magazines, stars in this riotously funny comedy as money-obsessed Sakiko and brillantly demonstrates her ability to act as an ingenious comedienne. MY SECRET CACHE also displays a superb ensemble of actors including popular actor/film director Go Riju (Zazie and Elephant Song) as the nihilistic teaching assistant Edogawa and veteran actor Taketoshi Naito as geologist Morita. (...)
* The wilderness area in this film is Aokigahara Jukai (sea of trees), located at the foot of Mt. Fuji. The Jukai is vast and considered a mysterious place, since compasses often malfunction and people easily lose their sense of direction. The whole area is covered with dense forests, and the numerous paths are intricate. It is also a popular suicide site, since bodies are not found easily. Every year, the local police organize a search party for bodies of those who are reported missing or have left clues hinting at suicide.
Shinobu Yaguchi, director and screenwriter, was born in 1967. He enrolled in the Tokyo University of Art and Design as a graphic design major, but he soon launched his career as a filmmaker. While turning out a number of 8mm and video works, Yaguchi took on part-time jobs at film studios as an assistant to the production designer.
In 1990, he received in the Grand Prize at the PFF Award 1990 for his 8mm Ame-Onna / Rain Woman. The film follows two carefree girls in his eclectic style which reveals his exceptional spontaneity.
Yaguchi's first feature was Down the Drain, which was made on a Pia Film Festival's scholarship program. This off-beat comedy laden with black humor follows the plight of an ordinary high school girl who is confronted by a series of misfortunes.
MY SECRET CACHE is Yaguchi's second feature film. Once again a female protagonist becomes his vehicle for a rollicking comedy.
1986: Frustrater (8mm). 1987: Kaikisen / The Tropics (8mm). 1989: Asaki Yumemishi / Flimsy Dreams (8mm), Suisen Terebi / The Water Capped TV. 1990: Ame On-na / Rain Woman (8mm). 1992: Hadashi No Picnic / Down the Drain (16mm). 1996: HIMITSU NO HANAZONO/My secRet Cache.
© 1997 by International Forum of New Cinema. All rights reserved.