2011 Program Detail »

Jimmy Murakami: Non-Alien

Jimmy Murakami: Non-Alien

Jimmy Murakami

Jimmy Murakami: Non-Alien

Directed by: Sé Merry Doyle
Runtime: 75 min
Year: 2011
Country: Ireland/USA

Jimmy Murakami is a Japanese American who grew up in the United States, developed a well-respected career in Hollywood, and established a full life in his adopted country Ireland. He is an Oscar-nominated animator, whose films include When the Wind Blows and The Snowman. While it would seem that he has a wonderful life, his childhood continues to haunt him.

Murakami was only eight years old when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor during WWII. He and his family, along with over a hundred thousand Japanese Americans, were sent to internment camps. Murakami’s family spent four years in the Tule Lake camp in the California desert, where his sister Sumiko died of leukemia.

This documentary film showcases Murakami’s series of paintings reflecting on his time at the Tule Lake camp and culminates in Murakami’s return to Tule Lake to confront his pain and anger.
—Sharon Kim

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Preceded by:

Four Immeasurables

Four Immeasurables

Directed by: Keith Johnson
Runtime: 7 min
Year: 2010
Country: Australia

As a Chinese calligrapher prepares to paint, he tries to hold onto his past.

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Fumiko Hayashida: The Woman Behind the Symbol

Directed by: Lucy Ostrander
Runtime: 15 min
Year: 2009
Country: USA

A photograph of Fumiko Hayashida in 1942 became a symbol of the Japanese American internment. At the age of 97, she travels back to the Minidoka internment camp for the first time since she was released 63 years prior.


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