“In a similar way to Minamata: The Victims and Their World, this particular film is a contrastive, reflective work that gains by being juxtaposed with what had preceded it.
Kanai Katsu: Then there’s Furuyashikimura, which I really like. What was it like making a documentary after such a long time?
“In the production diary from the editing, there were many discussions about life and the ethics of filming people who are facing death. For example, on January 2, 1975, there was such a conversation between Tamura and Ogawa.
“What Ogawa’s Sundial Carved by a Thousand Years of Notches (and the Yamagata Documentary Film Festival that it inspired) suggests is that new transnational networks must be built, no matter how unprofessional and utopian, in order to wrest at least some of the power away from the core o
“Amid this cinematic spectacle, familiar from previous films but now considerably larger and more violent, something very different is going on. In Peasants of the Second Fortress there are occasional moments when the action of the film grinds to a halt and people simply talk.
“The documentary we have been shooting for the last seven or eight years hopes to recreate the natural features – rice, earth, water – and recreate the stories sleeping in the hearts of the villagers.