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This cross-cultural journey into "the ancient heart of modern Japan" records a yearlong immersion into Japanese culture by plucky Swiss-American filmmaker Karin Muller.
Traveling the country and living among ordinary people, she studies judo, zen archery, and taiko drumming; explores geisha, kabuki, sumo, and pachinko; participates in religious festivals; and watches people at work—farmers, fishermen, restaurateurs, papermakers, a forger of samurai swords, and the owner of a home-based car-parts assembly business, to name a few. "Muller is brash, intrepid," says the New York Times, "determined not only to track down what remains of traditional Japan but also to experience it herself." (A 307-page companion book records her adventures in more detail.)
6 and up
Total time: 225 minutes