February 7, 2023

Gray Gordon
(336) 926-6490

Filmmaker Retrospective: Kinuyo Tanaka, Japan's Most Underrated Filmmaker

Kinuyo Tanaka was a Japanese actress and director who was an influential figure in Japanese cinema during the 20th century and yet isn't as celebrated in the West as her male peers. In tandem with our ongoing Cinema East series, in honor of Women's History Month, and in collaboration with CASCADIA International Women's Film Festival, we're highlighting the life and work of Tanaka with a selection of seven films featuring her work in front of and behind the camera. These films will include introductions from special guests, including Colleen Laird, Professor of Japanese Popular Culture at UBC who specializes in Japanese media and gender studies. Please check our website for the most up-to-date information.

Wed. Mar. 1 - Love Letter (1953)
Sat. Mar 4 - The Moon Has Risen (1955)
Wed. Mar 8 - Forever a Woman (1955) Sponsored by CASCADIA Intl. Women's Film Festival in honor of Intl. Women's Day
Sat. Mar 11 - Love Under the Crucifix (1962)
Wed. Mar 15 - Girls of the Night (1961)
Wed. Mar 22 - Equinox Flower (Ozu Yasujiro, 1958)
Wed. Mar 29 - Wandering Princess (1960)

Born in 1909, Tanaka began her career as an actress in the 1930s and quickly became one of Japan's leading stars, appearing in over 200 films throughout her career. In addition to her acting work, Tanaka also became one of the first women in Japan to direct films, breaking barriers in a male-dominated industry. She was known for her versatility and range, both on and off the screen, and her contributions to Japanese cinema have earned her a place in film history as a pioneering female filmmaker. She boldy placed women at the center of her film as poets, sex workers, heroines, and victims of social injustice. 

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Founded in 1998, the Pickford Film Center serves the Whatcom community by screening independent films 365 days a year, producing and presenting the annual Doctober film festival, the Bellingham Children’s Film Festival, numerous film series and special events.  The Pickford offers free documentary film showings to all Whatcom middle schools through Doc-ED and partners with students and schools for many other events during the year.

        We acknowledge that Whatcom County is located on the unceded territory of the Coast Salish Peoples. They cared for the lands that included what we’d call the Puget Sound region, Vancouver Island and British Columbia since time immemorial. This gives us the great obligation and opportunity to learn how to care for our surrounding areas and all the natural and human resources we require to live. We express our deepest respect and gratitude for our indigenous neighbors, the Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe, for their enduring care and protection of our shared lands and waterways.
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