WHEEL OF FORTUNE AND FANTASY
by Ryûsuke Hamaguchi
Japan, 2021, 121'
An unexpected love triangle, a failed seduction trap and an encounter that results from a misunderstanding
Meiko is startled when she realizes that the man who her best friend starts to have feelings for, is her ex; Sasaki plots to trick his college professor out of revenge, using his class-friend-with-benefits Nao, while Natsuko encounters a woman who seems to be someone from her past, leading the two to confess the feelings they have harbored in their hearts - stories about the complexities of relationships, told through coincidences that happen in the lives of women in love.
Cast & Crew
With: Kotone Furukawa, Ayumu Nakajima, Hyunri, Kiyohiko Shibukawa, Katsuki Mori, Shouma Kai, Fusako Urabe, Aoba Kawai
Producer: Satoshi Takata
World Premiere: Berlin IFF 2021 - Competition
Hong Kong IFF 2021
Moscow IFF 2021
Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize - Berlin IFF 2021
After graduating from the University of Tokyo, Hamaguchi worked in the commercial film industry for a few years before entering the graduate program in film at Tokyo University of the Arts.
He made a festival debut in 2008 with his graduation film Passion at San Sebastian and Tokyo FILMeX. He has been constantly working on films since then. These include the Japan/Korea co-production film THE DEPTHS (2010) and a series of documentary Tohoku Trilogy co-directed by Ko Sakai (Sound of the Waves, Voices from the Waves and Storytellers) from 2011 to 2013. The former two of trilogy are composed by interviews of the victims of the devastating Great Japan Earthquake, and Storytellers is a documentary about research activity in Japanese regional folktales.
In 2015, his 317-minute feature film Happy Hour won major awards at numerous film festivals starting at Locarno FF. His first commercial film Asako I & II was selected for competition at the Cannes FF in 2018. He is also the screenwriter on Kiyoshi Kurosawa's Wife of a Spy, which won the Silver Lion at the 2020 Venice FF.