Film: Two documentary films

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Naked man with CP on highwayHara Kazuo is a Japanese documentary filmmaker (and photographer) famous for works such as the The Emperor's Army Naked Marches On. His first film, Goodbye CP (さようならCP or Sayonara CP) was made in 1972 with the cooperation of the radical disability group Aoi Shiba no Kai (青い芝の会), which was composed of people with cerebral palsy (CP). The film's portrayal of the plight of people with severe disabilities in the early 1970s in Japan was darkly disturbing and the film was criticized for its tone at the time. For several decades, Goodbye CP was not widely available but Hara's production company Shissho Productions has recently rereleased it on DVD and VHS (Japanese language only). Dartmouth's Jeffrey Ruoth has a good write-up of Hara's filmography.

On a lighter note, blog reader Paul De Zan let me know about a new documentary film called Mad Hot Ballroom which is about New York City public school elementary kids getting involved with ballroom dancing. I haven't had a chance to view the film yet, but from the clips shown on the website, it looks absolutely fantastic. A must-see:

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This page contains a single entry by Karen Nakamura published on May 28, 2005 3:27 PM.

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