Review: Queer Japan (2019)

Queer Japan

Release Date: December 11, 2020

Run Time: 1 hour & 39 minutes

Reviewed By: Adam

Queer Japan explores the lives of Japan’s contemporary LGBTQ culture, bursting at the seams with multi-faceted and uninhibited artists as well as audacious activists fighting for equality and understanding. The documentary profiles individuals from across the spectrum including drag queen Vivienne Sato, erotic manga artist Gengoroh Tagame, butoh dancer Atsushi Matsuda, multimedia artist Nogi Sumiko, HIV+ advocate Hiroshi Hasegawa, activist Akira the Hustler, and transgender author Tomato Hatakeno.

So I’ll start with this, even though my rating is low, don’t avoid Queer Japan.

I loved the vibrant colors and everyone had an interesting story… however, focusing was tough for me during this one. I usually don’t have any issues with focusing on the story/video while I’m reading the subtitles, but for whatever reason I did with Queer Japan. This made it very tough for me to enjoy.

This leads me to my final take, and it could very well just be from the lack of focus I had, but I felt disconnected from the overall story and felt like it jumped around too much. I’m glad they were able to get all of these stories out there, but maybe turning Queer Japan into a mini series would’ve been the better move. This way every story could’ve made up a new episode and been easier to focus on. I’m curious what everyone else will think.

Queer Japan is currently available via Theatrical At Home and on Digital HD, including Apple TV, Prime Video and Google Play.

Reel ROB Rating: 4.25 out of 10 stars

Post Credits Scene: No

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