Children and adolescents have been a prominent subject for Japanese cinema during all its history. From the viewpoint of the proposed thematic scope of “Individual, Community & Society: Conflict, Resolution & Synergy”, the non-adult characters and its maturation process is a privileged theme. Cinema, as a popular culture manifestation, aims to the setting of discourses on construction of the sense of community, belonging –or lack of it– and identity. The aim of this paper is to analyze the implications of the depiction of conflictive childhood and adolescence in contemporary Japanese cinema. From selected examples, including films from prominent directors such as Kore’eda Hirokazu, Kawase Naomi, Nakashima Tetsuya or Iwai Shunji, we will try to detect the common trends and concepts behind their filmic proposals, and discuss the significance of them and its fitting in the stream of children/youngsters depictions in the history of Japanese cinema.
Jose Montaño, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain
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