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Japan, 2009 (MIFF 2010, Neighbourhood Watch)

Director: Hitoshi Matsumoto

Cube meets Being John Malkovich.

Japan's hugely popular comedian Hitoshi Matsumoto (Dainipponjin, MIFF 08) demonstrates his maturation as a filmmaker with this piece of candy-coloured weirdness.

An anonymous man - played by Matsumoto in a noteworthy example of great physical comedy - wakes up to his unexplained imprisonment in an empty, rectangular room wearing only polka dot pajamas. Where is he? Who did this to him? In a totally different reality, a green-masked wrestler, Escargot Man, prepares for a very important match.

Matsumoto flexes his creative muscle in the handling of two disparate tones and storylines that sensationally come together, in an exuberant and wholly original film.

“A mind-melting journey into the deepest realm of [Matsumoto's] imagination. To say that Symbol is difficult to describe is an understatement of epic proportions.” - Toronto International Film Festival

D Hitoshi Matsumoto P Akihiko Okamoto S Hitoshi Matsumoto, Mitsuyoshi Takasu WS U-Media L Japanese, Spanish, English, Russian w/English subtitles TD 35mm/2009

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