Blue Hour


Rafael 2 Sat, Oct 5, 2019 2:45 PM
Rafael 2 Thu, Oct 10, 2019 9:15 PM
Film Info
Section:World Cinema
Mind the Gap
Running Time:92 min.
Director:Yuko Hakota
Producer:Daisuke Toyama
Hideki Hoshino
Screenwriter:Yuko Hakota
Cinematographer:Ryûto Kondô
Editor:Daisuke Imai
Shim Eun-kyung
Daichi Watanabe
Kaho Minami
Print Source:Bitters End
Note Writer:Nadia Ismail


Japanese director Yuko Hakota's sincere and touching debut full-length feature follows Sunada (Kaho, a Japanese TV darling who also co-starred in Hirokazu Kore-eda’s Our Little Sister), a 30-year-old TV commercial director whose work and home lives leave something to be desired. With her quirky best friend Kiyoura (Korean actress Shim Eun-kyung) who fancies herself an amateur chanteuse, she embarks on a road trip from Tokyo to her childhood home in the countryside of Ibaraki. In a setting that's both familiar and changed, Sunada and Kiyoura reimagine themselves and consider how one's childhood shapes a person. Full of gorgeous color thanks to cinematographer Ryûto Kondô (Shoplifters, MVFF 2018), Blue Hour is a visual treat which evenly blends awkwardly funny scenes with emotionally stirring drama in this remarkable coming-of-age-in-your-30s tale.

Additional Information

Yuko Hakota was born in 1983 in Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan, where she set her debut feature Blue Hour (2019). The film was inspired by her own experiences growing up there. Hakota won the Asian New Talent Award for Best Director at the 2019 Shanghai International Film Festival. She is a graduate of Tokyo University of Arts’ Fine Arts program and began her career directing commercials.