SXSW Film

Daily reviews and interviews

Campaign

D: Kazuhiro Soda

With the Dem primary seemingly starting already, the last thing we need is another reminder about the relentless stage management of politics. But Campaign is a window into an arcane world few of us will ever see: the electoral machine in Japan. Kazuhiko Yamauchi, a political novice, is running for an open seat on the Kawasaki City Council. Having the backing of then-Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's Liberal Democratic Party gives him advantages he's refreshingly frank about, but it also means his every move is vetted by the party brass, down to whether he refers to his spouse as "wife" or "housewife." (It's the latter.) Campaign is fascinating stuff, with Yamauchi trying to be all things to all people – but it's also hilarious. With his omnipresent sash and PA system, Yamauchi's campaign work is almost Borat-esque, as he frantically runs around, making pledges to the disinterested, including children.


1:30pm, Alamo South Lamar

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