Aruzentin Babaa (2007)
   
(Argentine Hag)
Cast
Koji Yakusho: Satoru Wakui
Kyoka Suzuki:Yuri
Maki Horikita: Mitsuko, Satoru's daughter
Aiko Morishita:Sanae Takimoto
Satomi Tezuka:Yoshiko Wakui
Ittoku Kishibe:Junzo Shirai
Naoki Tanaka
Kitaro
(August 22, 2007
The DVD (R 2 ) of  "Argentine Hag"  will be on sale on October 3, 2007.
It has no English subtitles!.

(April 6)
Here is the interview with Koji Yakusho and director Naoki Nagao. If you click the '1M'
or '500' k on the botom left , you will be able to see the three -minute video clip of the greeting session by the
main cast on March 6 at Nakano Sun Plaza Hall, Tokyo.

(April 3)
A wonderful photo of director Nagao and the main cast, taken on the opening day March 24, can now be seen,
if you click "What's new" on the official website of "Argentine Hag".  Koji Yakusho is breathtakingly  
handsome!

(March 29)
Three more Interviews with Koji Yakusho on "Argentine Hag!"
( 1 )      ( 2 = video clip)     ( 3  )

(March 24)
Another
video clip of the interview with Koji Yakusho on "Argentine Hag".

(March 21)
'Argentine Hag' will be released on March 24 in Japan. Director Naoki Nagao, Koji Yakusho, Kyoka Suzuki
and Maki Horikita will greet the audience at two movie theaters in Tokyo on the opening day.

You can watch a
video clip of the interview with Koji Yakusho and Kyoka Suzuki.
Please click  蜀咲函(1Mbps) under the picture.

(March 10)
Here is
another photo gallery site. You can see more photos of this movie. Koji Yakusho's clothing outfit is
very fanny.

(March 7)
The premiere showing for "Argentine Babaa" was held on March 6 in Tokyo.
Koji Yakusho, Kyoka Suzuki, Maki Horikita and director Naoki Nagao greeted audience from the stage.

(March 3)
Here is t
he photo gallery site for this movie. Click each pic for enlargement.

(January 13, 2007)
The full trailer of "Argentine Baba(Hag) has been set up. Please click
the official website
of this film. You will need either Windows Media Player or Quick Time to see the trailer.
Koji Yakusho as a gravestone mason in this film is breathtakingly charming!

(December 20)
The official website of "Argentine Baba(Hag)" was updated.  It has now the introduction, story, cast and staff
pages.

(December 10)
I have just found that IMDb set up the "Argentine Baba" page.
What pleased me most about the staff is that Yoshikazu Suo is in charge of music!  He was also in charge of
"Shall we dance?" music in 1996.  Fantastic!

(August 15)
The press conference of "Argentine Babaa" was held on the 13th in Shirakawa, Fukushima prefecture.  You
can watch the conference and some shooting scenes
here.

These  photos of Koji Yakusho, Kyoka Suzuki, and Maki Horikita are superb!  Asked about his first
impression of Suzuki as Argentine hag, Koji mentioned that even with an old woman's make-up, Suzuki is still
beautiful, adding that it was not surprising that the tombstone craftman, Satoru, had got atrracted to her.

In the film, we will be able to see Koji and Suzuki dance the tango!  Koji said that he had practiced dancing
the tango with Suzuki for nearly 20 hours and that his dancing practice for "Shall we dansu? " in 1995 had
helped him greatly.

The shooting of this film started on July 20 in a farm in Nasu, Tochigi prefecture and it is due to wrap up
toward the end of August.

(July 31)
On July 30, the Sport Nippon reported that Koji Yakusho and Kyoka Suzuki would star in a new film entitled,
"Aruzentin Babaa" (Argentine hag) based on a novel by Japanese novelist Banana Yoshimoto's "Arugentin
Babaa" (Argentine Hag).

Koji 's role is that of a widowed tombstone mason, Satoru, who falls in love with a 50-year-old woman, Yuri
(which means lily), nicknamed ,"Aruzentin-babaa (Argentine hag). Yuri is so called by the townspeople
because years ago she used to teach the Argentine tango in her three- storey building, which is now  near to
ruines.

In bilingual published form Yoshimoto's novel, "Arzentin Babaa" has the Japanese original on one page and
the English translation is on the facing page. This beautiful book has a shimmering silvery cover and inside
there are lots of lovely little paintings and photos. I read it through in a couple of hours tonight and  while
reading, my heart was filled with warm emotion.

The story shows Satoru's deep sense of the loss of his wife and the significance of life  gradually restored
through his love to this rather queer-looking but somehow attractive woman, and suggest the rebirth of both
Satoru and Yuri.

Kyoka Suzuki is an attractive 38-year- old actress ,but the director Nagao dared to select her. He told the press
that he "
wanted to have an actress with the most transparancy and the best acting ability in Japan, as it is a
very difficult role."  Suzuki says, "it is my pleasure to be in a film of my favorite story."  She has been avidly
practicing Tango, and even traveled to Argentina in July for that purpose. Yakusho states, "I believe it will be
a picture-book-like heart-warming fantasy." (
The underlined section is based on a translation by Hoga Central
site).
Written by Banana Yoshimoto
Directed by
Naoki Nagao
Release date: March 24, 2007
Created on July 31,2006
Updated on August 22, 07
Banana Yoshimoto's Official Site
   (Japanese & English)
IMDb: Argentine Baba
The flyer of "Argentine Hag"
Click the picture for enlargement
The Japan Times Review
by Mark Shilling