Films of Remembrance New York

A one-day film showcase commemorating the signing of Executive Order 9066, which set the wheels in motion to forcibly relocate some 120,000 persons of Japanese ancestry into American concentration camps during World War II.

Screenings & Discussions with Filmmakers

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
3:15 to 11 p.m.


$10 each screening / $33 for All-Day Pass (Limited) / FREE for students with ID

Tenri Cultural Institute
43A West 13th St.
New York, N.Y.

See filmmaker biographies HERE

Short narratives and documentaries (4 shorts): 3:15 p.m.

• “Moving Walls” (2017, 25 min.) by Sharon Yamato. “Moving Walls” tells the story of what happened to the barracks used to house 120,000 Japanese Americans during WWII. Focusing on the Heart Mountain concentration camp, the film tells the story of how they were sold for a dollar apiece to homesteaders in Wyoming. It delves into the intersection of the mass detention and the local population in the remote areas surrounding these former concentration camps. At a time when race and ethnicity continue to raise questions about issues surrounding immigration and civil rights, the story is told from the dual perspective of those forced to live in these shoddily constructed buildings and those who chose to start new lives in them after the war. Out of an American nightmare, the barracks became part of the American dream. Discussion with filmmaker Sharon Yamato of California.

• “One-Two-One-Seven” (2016, 13 min.) by Brett Kodama. Sharon Shizuko Okazaki Kodama was only three years old when she and her family, Family No. 1217, were incarcerated at the Manzanar concentration camp in 1942. She remained there until the end of the war in 1945, orphaned when her father killed her mother and then committed suicide. Her story is just one of many from this forgotten and often-ignored part of American history. Discussion with New York-based filmmaker Brett Kodama.

• “The Orange Story” (2016, 18 min.) by Erika Street. Koji Oshima is the proud owner of a small corner grocery store, but he must now abandon everything and report to an assembly center, en route to a more permanent confinement site. His belongings, his business – everything must be sold except for what he can carry in one large duffel bag. Up against a wall, Koji receives only one low-ball offer for his store, which he has no choice but to accept. The lone bright spot during this turmoil is the friendship Koji develops with a precocious nine-year-old girl. On the day of his departure, however, Koji is saddened to learn that even this friendship has been tainted by the larger forces of fear and wartime hysteria. Discussion with producer Jason Matsumoto.

• “Tadaima” (2015, 15 min.) by Robin D’Oench. George, Akiko, Kaori, and Kazuo return to their former house in the summer of 1945, following the end of WWII and the closure of the Japanese American concentration camps. Arriving home, they find the house ransacked by vandals and in a state of disrepair. Emotions flair and each individual member of the family react differently to the homecoming. While rebuilding their home, the family is able to recover a “takarabako” – a chest of memorable items that had to be left behind before the forced relocation, bringing the family closer together. As the day draws to a close, there is a glimmer of hope that the future holds better days. “Tadaima” honors the legacy of Paul Takagi, 92-year old former incarceree, WWII veteran, Berkeley Professor Emeritus, and the director’s grandfather. The film stars Toshi Toda (“Pearl Harbor,” “Letters From Iwo Jima”), Vivian Umino, Mackenyu Maeda and Jordyn Kanaya. Discussion with New York-based filmmaker Robin D’Oench.

Feature Documentaries:

5:30 p.m.:

• “And Then They Came For Us” (2017, 47 min.) by Abby Ginzberg & Ken Schneider. Brings history into the present, retelling this difficult story and following Japanese American activists as they speak out against the Muslim registry and travel ban. Seventy-five years ago, Executive Order 9066 paved the way to the profound violation of constitutional rights that resulted in the forced incarceration of 120,000 Japanese Americans. Featuring George Takei and many others who were incarcerated, as well as newly rediscovered photographs of Dorothea Lange. Knowing our history is the first step to ensuring we do not repeat it. “And Then They Came for Us” is a cautionary and inspiring tale for these dark times. Discussion with filmmaker Abby Ginzberg and activist Chizu Omori of California.

7 p.m.:

• “Resistance at Tule Lake” (2017, 56 min.) by Konrad Aderer. “Resistance at Tule Lake” tells the long-suppressed story of 12,000 Japanese Americans who dared to resist the U.S. government’s program of mass incarceration during World War II. Branded as “disloyals” and re-imprisoned at Tule Lake Segregation Center, they continued to protest in the face of militarized violence, and thousands renounced their U.S. citizenship. Giving voice to experiences that have been marginalized for over 70 years, this documentary challenges the nationalist, one-sided ideal of wartime “loyalty.” Discussion with New-York-based filmmaker Konrad Aderer and Carl Takei and Chizu Omori of Tsuru for Solidarity.

9 p.m.:

• “Alternative Facts: The Lies of Executive Order 9066” (2019, 65 min.) by Jon Osaki. A documentary feature film about the false information and political influences which led to the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans. “Alternative Facts” sheds light on the people and politics which influenced the signing of the infamous Executive Order 9066, that authorized the mass incarceration of nearly 120,000 Japanese Americans. The film will reveal the lies used to justify the decision and the cover-up that went all the way to the United States Supreme Court. “Alternative Facts” will also examine the parallels to the current climate of fear, attitudes towards immigrant communities, and similar attempts to abuse the powers of the government. Discussion with consulting producer Lauren Kawana of California.

Tickets: $10 each screening / $33 for All-Day Pass (Limited) / FREE for students with ID

Proceeds benefit the Wayne Maeda Educational Fund

Presented by:

Media Sponsor:

Silver Sponsors:

Bronze Sponsor:

Julie Azuma

Community Supporters:

New York Japanese American Citizens League

Japanese American Association of New York

New York Day of Remembrance Committee

Tsuru for Solidarity

Japanese-Americans, Japanese in America


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