SOLOMON’S PERJURY PART 1: SUSPICION | ソロモンの偽証 前編
North American Premiere
Running Time: 121 minutes
Language: Japanese with English subtitles
Director: Izuru Narushima
Cast: Ryoko Fujino, Anna Ishii, Tomita Miu, Shimizu Hiroya
Showtimes: Sunday, July 5, 3:00pm at Walter Reade Theatre
Published as a three-volume novel in 2013, Solomon’s Perjury is Miyabe Miyuki’s most ambitious work to date. The author, who writes books in the detective, fantasy and science-fiction genres, is known for her portrayals of powerless women, including housewives, prostitutes and bankruptcy victims. For Solomon’s Perjury, she turned to another underclass: children.
A 14-year-old boy is found dead, buried under the snow of his high school. The police and teachers are quick to dismiss the case as suicide, despite an anonymous letter claiming that the boy was pushed. A group of the boy’s classmates, led by the fearless Ryoko Fujino, push against their teachers, parents and the police to stage their own mock trial to discover the truth.
The Japanese film industry can sometimes dumb down its most ambitious projects. The choice of Izuru Narushima as director is not surprising; what is surprising is that he was allowed to tell his tale of guilt, shame and redemption with intelligence and a lack of sensationalism. The movies’ exhilarating first part leads up to the eve of the trial, in which the students will play the roles of judge, jury and both the prosecution and defence councils. The second film focuses on the trial where both shocking and subtle revelations send irrevocable tremors through the high school and the adults surrounding the case.
Part of New Cinema From Japan. Presented with the support of Japan Foundation New York.