Film: The Tsunami And The Cherry Blossom (津波そして桜)
Director: Lucy Walker
Venue: BFI, London
Running time: 40 minutes
The brave Japanese
- First Public Screening – Premiere
- Shown as part of the BFI London Film Festival
- Plus… Lucy Walker in Conversation
Awards:2012 Academy Awards – Documentary Short Subject – Nominee
Unfortunately, the circumstances and subject matter are on the low side.
We fade in on a much talked about opening scene. It’s one of destruction, the loss of homes, vehicles, belongings and worst of all, lives. The Tsunami has hit this area.
It’s March 11th 2011. To many, this is a date best forgotten about or one to be for remembrance of those who perished in the latter quake-come-tsunami.
If the latter wasn’t enough the events had a dramatic and terrifying effect & impact on the local nuclear plant. Haven’t these folk suffered enough? This is all a viewer can ask at this time.
Family, friends, homes and more have been lost. It’s witnessed in the peoples’ voices, tears, eyes and hearts. This tragic turn of events is going to take so long to be forgotten. Although, if the truth be told, it will always be remembered, & unfortunately often.
I was beginning to wonder how the title’s flower – Lucy Walker’s original intended study, story and documentary – would appear in this film. How can we turn from traumatic occurrences to a plant of great beauty?
I can’t explain how but this transition does take place, engagingly, cinematically and therefore stylishly.
You see, the Cherry Blossom is known for it’s short life. The Cherry Blossom’s Living and then Dying & then re-Living serves as a more than apt metaphor and comparison for those loved ones who’ve disappeared from ones’ sights. On the subject of re-living, or at least re-appearing it’s worth noting that Ms Walker again has enlisted the help of her good friend Moby for the soundtrack to this picture [a fact made to the audience by Ms Walker after the film, whilst in conversation with a certain Jess Search – incidentally a long-time and old-days acquaintance of Lucy’s].
From photos and memories being taken of this popular flower, to wishes of long life and ‘never again’ praises to the Glamorous & Glorious Gardener’s Gem of a favourite, we note it’s significance on many levels.
Ultimately, this almost wondrous cinematic document shows that nature springs both beauty and tragedy on us.
Keep an eye out for Mini Mini’s interview with Lucy Walker, the director of this film and other ones. Check out those others if you can – essentially Countdown To Zero, Blindsight, Devil’s Playground & Waste Land. The latter being another Oscar Nominated documentary but at the same time a title not to far from what we witness in The Tsunami And The Cherry Blossom… An area of Japan which almost becomes a wasteland.
Lucy’s brief chat before the film and in conversation afterwards elaborated on both her experience in this film itself plus her career, along with clips from the various documentaries.
So, you want a taster?
Find the following Mini Mini Movie (i.e. Trailer) & other Mini-er Movies at:
“Tiny Tiny Tsunami”