When asked about the message she hopes to convey in the film, Ohama responded, “It’s a moving and inspiring story of how people find real joy, love and meaning in life again… even in the face of extreme loss. In our busy, cluttered world filled with stress… we tend to forget how to see and appreciate the simple things in our lives that can fill us with positive energy, joy and strength.”
In the wake of the 2011 tragedy, Ohama, a third generation Canadian with Japanese ancestry, travelled to Tohoku as a relief volunteer. She quickly found that what the people around her wanted most was someone to help them tell their stories, stories of loss and heartbreak, of fear and devastation, but also of love and endurance.
In the movie’s trailer, viewable at www.LindaOhama.com one survivor tells the camera, “I have a duty as a survivor to do much more now for my children and grandchildren… for the people of my town and the world.”
The documentary has received rave reviews at film festivals in Vancouver, Toronto, Rome and Hawaii.
Environmental Activist David Suzuki has urged that this is, “A must-see film for all concerned about humanity’s unthinking embrace of powerful technology as well as the inspiration of the human spirit.”
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said that it, “Captures the heartache of loss in the subjects’ own words, but delivers a life affirming message of hope in the face of adversity.”
While this film serves as a warning of the environmental cost of our energy consumption, it is also a film about the endurance of the people and the community of Tohoku. In the wake of a tragedy, it reminds us that love, compassion and hope are the most powerful tools for rebuilding a community.
Tickets to A New Moon Over Tohoku (東北の新月) are $10, and can be purchased through the Yukon Arts Centre. Refreshments will be provided.
The Japanese Film Festival starts on Feb. 22 at 7 p.m. at The Old Fire Hall with the film A Tale of Samurai Cooking: A True Love Story. This a free event, and light refreshments will be served.
To learn more, or to get involved with the Japanese Canadian Association of Yukon, please contact JCAY president Fumi Torigai at JCAYukon@gmail.com.