This sensitive, thought-provoking film, known as “Karera ga Honki de Amu toki wa” in Japan, offers another take on the Japanese family and brings to light the status of the LGBTQ community and transgender rights in Japan today by exploring an unconventional family’s unconditional love.
At ll, Tomo (Rinka Kakihara) learned self-sufficiency early on. Her mother regularly disappears for days, sometimes weeks, leaving Tomo-chan to raise herself. Uncle Makio (Kenta Kiritani) takes Tomo in until her mother resurfaces, but he explains things are different; he now lives with transgender girlfriend Rinko (Toma Ikuta).
Tomo is shy at first, but gradually the unfamiliar domesticity of this loving household begins to feel like home. The trio form a family unit, comically embarking on a knitting project to celebrate Rinko’s legal name change. Labeled “freak family” by her classmates and interrogated by child protective services, Tomo’s growing awareness of prejudice draws her even closer to Rinko.
The film won the Teddy Jury Award at the Berlin International Film Festival and the International Achievement Award at the 2017 Outfest Los Angeles LGBT Film Festival.
The screening is presented by Faith UMC’s Social Action Committee and Greater L.A. JACL. All are welcome. For information, call Louise at (310) 327-3169.