On-Gaku: Our Sound
Grand Prize, Best Animated Feature! – 2019 Ottawa International Animation Festival
3 Shows Only!
This film is preceded by the short film Make it Soul
When you’re a bored teenager looking for thrills, sometimes the only thing you can turn to is rock ‘n roll. Having no skill, money, or even a full set of drums, a feared trio of high school delinquents nevertheless decide they are destined for musical glory in a quest to impress their only friend Aya, avoid a rival gang, and – most importantly – jam out. Animated almost entirely by director Kenji Iwaisawa, and featuring a lead performance by Japanese alt-rock legend Shintaro Sakamoto, ON-GAKU: OUR SOUND brings its own sound and vision to the Hiroyuki Ohashi manga from which it was adapted. With pitch-perfect deadpan humor, the film presents a highly original take on the beloved slacker comedy: a lo-fi buddy film with a blaring musical finale that will leave you wanting an immediate encore.
Japan, 2019, 85 minutes, Not Rated, In Japanese with English Subtitles, Directed by Kenji Iwaisawa
“Incredibly compelling and deeply endearing. Sequences of beautifully stylized, awe-striking animation that delight and surprise…also one of the funniest films I think I’ve seen all year.”– Chris Luciantonio, FILM PULSE
“A stairway to rockers’ heaven…upends all that is typical in Japanese animation.”– Maggie Lee, VARIETY
“5-Stars! An instant classic. So fresh and distinctive, your immediate impulse is to stand up and applaud it.”– James Hadfield, THE JAPAN TIMES
“Unambiguously punk as hell.”– David Ehrlich, INDIEWIRE