Sarusuberi: Miss Hokusai

Miss Hokusai

classified 12A S

Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme 2016


Please note: This was screened in Feb 2016

Keiichi Hara
Kumiko Asô, Gaku Hamada, Kengo Kôra
90 mins, Subtitled, 2016, Japan

Set in early 19th century Japan - and based on the original 1980’s manga series Sarusuberi by female artist Hinako Sugiura - this award-winning animation brings to life the story of O-Ei, a free-spirited woman overshadowed by her larger-than-life artist father; the ukiyo-e master and printmaker, Katsushika Hokusai.

Though hardly a household name to Western audiences, Katsushika Hokusai (referred to as Tetsuzo by his inner circle) was responsible for creating what is arguably the most widely reproduced piece of Japanese art - The Great Wave Off the Coast of Kanagawa (the iconic azure swell gets a visual wink in the film). Producing dazzling works for powerful clients, he was assisted at the time by his talented and outspoken daughter O-Ei, who not only helps her father in the workshop but is also often left to deal with matters at home such as regularly visiting her mother and younger sister. With her motto “With 2 brushes and 4 chopsticks, we’ll get by anywhere” she shows in both her determination and also the way she sees herself as an equal partner to her erratic father that she is a worthy inheritor of both his stubbornness and his talent - a combination that makes her art so powerful that it soon leads her into trouble.

Creating a wonderfully detailed recreation of 19th Century Edo life through combining hand-drawn 2D with 3D techniques, the film scooped three awards at the 2015 Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal, including the Satoshi Kon Award for best animated feature film.

  • Love Japanese animation? Don't miss Howl's Moving Castle screening daily at 12:40 between Mon 8 - Fri 12 Feb.
  • Make a day of it! Enjoy Japanese specials and Children's menu in our Café/Bar, as well as free origrami.