SCREENING: Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo on 12/3
BEETLE QUEEN CONQUERS TOKYO (2009)
Thursday 12/3 at 21:00 @ Exile Room
Director: Jessica Oreck/ Country: USA, Japan / Duration: 90’
In densely populated and hyper-developed Japan, people of all ages still make room for a tiny bit of wilderness in their lives. It is only fitting that they have become captivated by nature’s most efficient invention in space, design and function – insects. Sold live in vending machines and department stores, plastic replicas included as prizes in the equivalent of a McDonald’s Happy Meal and the subject of the No. 1 videogame, MushiKing, from the smallest backyard to the top of Mt. Fuji, insects inspire an enthusiasm in Japan seen nowhere else in this world.
Like a detective story, the film untangles the web of influences behind Japan’s captivation with insects. It opens in modern-day Tokyo, where a single beetle recently sold for $90,000, then slips back to the early 1800s, to the first cricket-selling business and the development of haiku and other forms of insect literature and art. Through history and adventure, Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo travels all the way back in time to stories of the fabled first emperor who named Japan the “Isle of the Dragonflies.” If nothing else, it is bound to make you wonder whether our instinctive aversion to insects is nothing but the product of our Western upbringing!
IN JAPANESE WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES * FREE ENTRANCE