The Facets Cinémathèque is located at 1517 W. Fullerton Ave. in Chicago. For more information on films playing in the Cinémathèque, please call 773-281-4114. To order advance tickets online, visit the TicketWeb website by clicking here.
BIG MAN JAPAN (Dai-Nipponjin)
"[Hitoshi] Matsumoto builds on a simple-but-brilliant comic premise with patience, subtlety and daring" -Japan Times
"Decidedly odd, even by Japanese standards, this mockumentary...is tears-down-the-face funny and a genuine, jaw-dropping oddity... What should have been a one-note joke is explored and pushed and pulled in endless directions and, miraculously, never looses its freshness" -Variety
"I hurt myself laughing at this amazingly inventive mockumentary, and because it's so good, I refuse to give away much more than an insistent recommendation" -Village Voice
Recommended! "Masumoto’s deadpan is his great strength, making what could have seemed a parallel to Peter Berg's Hancock into something much, much funnier" -NewCity Chicago
½ "[Matsumoto] is satirizing three genres: the personal documentary, monster movies and reality TV. And he does this slyly, with a scalpel instead of a hatchet" -Roger Ebert
Recommended! "Inspired" -Chicago Reader
A middle-aged slacker living in a rundown, graffiti-ridden slum, Daisato's job involves being shocked by bolts of electricity that transform him into a stocky, stick-wielding giant several stories high who is entrusted with defending Japan from a host of bizarre monsters. But while his predecessors were national heroes, he is a pariah among the citizens he protects, who bitterly complain about the noise and destruction of property he causes. And Daisato has his own problems - an agent insistent on branding him with sponsor advertisements, an Alzheimer-afflicted grandfather who transforms into a giant in dirty underwear, and a family who is embarrassed by his often cowardly exploits. A wickedly deadpan spin on the giant Japanese superhero, Big Man Japan is an outrageous portrait of a pathetic but truly unique hero. Directed by Hitoshi Matsumoto, Japan, 2007, 35mm, 113 mins. In Japanese with English subtitles.