Saturday, February 12, 2011

“It’s an alarming clock. It wakes you up.”

It’s strange the things one has to come to a foreign country to discover about one’s homeland. Thanks to the “Morning 10 Movie Festival" sponsored by Toho Cinemas, both foreigners and Japanese alike have the opportunity to watch cinematic classics from America, Europe, and more. Last year I got to see two of my favorites, The Great Escape and Laurence of Arabia in the big screen manner that they so richly deserve. As the festival was quite popular its first season, it has just been renewed for a second year, with even more theaters and movies being involved. The 50 movies (“Red List”)shown the first year will be repeated at different locations, and 50 new movies (“Blue List”) will be shown at the originally participating theaters. For the most part, the movies are aired only once a week on Saturday morning at 10:00, as the title indicates, which is not always a convenient time. But this year at least one theater in Tokyo, the Miyukiza, will run the movie of the week for the week including multiple showings in a day.

Thanks to that clever bit of scheduling I was able to go see Shawshank Redemption yesterday evening. Though it’s one of my favorites, I wouldn’t have thought of it as a movie with the visual grandeur of the aforementioned two – but was pleasantly surprised that it really did have its own moments of rich cinematography.

However, as the Morning 10 website is in Japanese, I thought I’d type up the list of movies and dates of at least one location for my fellow expatriates and for my own reference – italics are ones I’d like to attend.

Toho Cinemas Miyukiza (Takarazuka Building, 1-1-3 Yurakucho, Chiyoda-ku. Take the JR Yamanote Line to Yurakucho Station, Hibiya Exit. Tickets here) will air the following schedule:

Feb. 5-11 Shawshank Redemption
Feb. 12-18 Field of Dreams
Feb. 19-25 The Public Eye
Feb. 26-Mar. 4 The Apartment
Mar. 5-11 Roman Holiday
Mar. 12-18 Love in the Afternoon
Mar. 19-25 Romeo and Juliet
Mar. 26-Apr. 1 Somewhere in Time
Apr. 2-8 The Godfather
Apr. 9-15 The Wild Bunch
Apr. 16-22 The Sting
Apr. 23-29 Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
Apr. 30-May 6 Plein Soleil
May 7-13 Un Homme et une Femme
May 14-20 East of Eden
May 21-27 Stand By Me
May 28-Jun. 3 Casablanca
Jun. 4-10 The Third Man
Jun. 11-17 Twelve Angry Men
Jun. 18-24 Duel
Jun. 25-Jul. 1 Silence of the Lambs
Jul. 2-8 The Name of the Rose
Jul. 9-15 The Right Stuff
Jul. 16-22 Fantastic Voyage
Jul. 23-29 Papillon
Jul. 30-Aug. 5 Bullitt
Aug. 6-Aug.12 West Side Story
Aug. 13-19 Singing in the Rain
Aug. 20-26 Laurence of Arabia
Aug. 27-Sep. 2 Ben Hur
Sep. 3-9 Some Like it Hot
Sep. 10-16 There’s No Business Like Show Business
Sep. 17-23 Amadeus
Sep. 24-30 Streets of Fire
Oct. 1-7 Limelight
Oct. 8-14 The Great Dictator
Oct. 15-21 The Great Escape
Oct. 22-28 The Bridge on the River Kwai
Oct. 29-Nov. 4 Nuovo Cinema Paradiso
Nov. 5-11 La Nuit Americaine
Nov. 12-18 Witness
Nov. 19-25 The Way We Were
Nov. 26-Dec. 2 A Room With A View
Dec. 3-9 Julia
Dec. 10-16 Rear Window
Dec. 17-23 North by Northwest
Dec. 24-30 Il Ferroviere
Dec. 31- 2012 Jan. 6 Les Enfants du Paradis
Jan. 7-13 Kramer vs. Kramer
Jan. 14-20 Rain Man


Toho Cinemas Roppongi Hills, meanwhile, in its second season will air the “Blue List” of a different 50 movies. Here they will only be aired once a week, and as the location is very popular I would recommend buying the tickets online here when they go on sale two days before the showing. (Keyaki Saka Complex, 6-10-2 Roppongi Minato-ku. Metro Hibiya Line to Roppongi Station, Exit 1C.)

Feb. 5-11 Sound of Music
Feb. 12-18 That’s Entertainment
Feb. 19-25 The Band Wagon
Feb. 26-Mar. 4 It’s a Wonderful Life
Mar. 5-11 Charade
Mar. 12-18 Sabrina
Mar. 19-25 Moonstruck
Mar. 26-Apr. 1 Goodbye Again
Apr. 2-8 The Godfather II
Apr. 9-15 The Deer Hunter
Apr. 16-22 Gone with the Wind
Apr. 23-29 Doctor Zhivago
Apr. 30-May 6 Belle du Jour
May 7-13 Les Dimanches de Ville D’Avray
May 14-20 Witness for the Prosecution
May 21-27 Sunset Boulevard
May 28-Jun. 3 From Russia With Love
Jun. 4-10 The Thomas Crown Affair
Jun. 11-17 Dirty Harry
Jun. 18-24 The French Connection
Jun. 25-Jul. 1 A Fistful of Dollars
Jul. 2-8 The Magnificent Seven
Jul. 9-15 Shane
Jul. 16-22 The Big Country
Jul. 23-29 Jeux Interdits
Jul. 30-Aug. 5 Khane-ye Doust Kodjast
Aug. 6-Aug.12 Marcelino Pan y Vino
Aug. 13-19 Il Gattopardo
Aug. 20-26 The Graduate
Aug. 27-Sep. 2 Midnight Cowboy
Sep. 3-9 Taxi Driver
Sep. 10-16 In the Heat of the Night
Sep. 17-23 The Longest Yard
Sep. 24-30 The Hustler
Oct. 1-7 Alien
Oct. 8-14 Carrie
Oct. 15-21 E.T.
Oct. 22-28 Edward Scissorhands
Oct. 29-Nov. 4 Back to the Future
Nov. 5-11 American Graffiti
Nov. 12-18 The Bad News Bears
Nov. 19-25 Breaking Away
Nov. 26-Dec. 2 La Strada
Dec. 3-9 La Dolce Vita
Dec. 10-16 Rebecca
Dec. 17-23 The Birds
Dec. 24-30 Diva
Dec. 31- 2012 Jan. 6 M*A*S*H
Jan. 7-13 Black Sunday
Jan. 14-20 The Guns of Navarone


A map of the full country’s theaters here.

Any of your favorite classics that you would recommend me to see?

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