Close Up

13 November 2021: Ascent


Fiona Tan, 2016, 81 min
Japanese & English with English subtitles
Introduced by Sonali Joshi

Fragments of letters between a writer and her deceased partner, Hiroshi, recounting a journey up Mount Fuji, are interspersed with ruminations on war-time and post-war Japanese society and culture. Comprising 150 still images of Mount Fuji – from archival material to amateur photos – acclaimed artist, Fiona Tan, crafts an extraordinary portrait of Japan's most revered mountain. Balanced delicately between documentary and fiction, Ascent is at once an ode to Japan’s great icon, a reflection on the social history of 20th century Japan, a study of grief and a meditation on the nature of photography and film.

Screening as part of Urban, Natural, Human: Exploring Japan on Screen

Information on further screenings as part of this programme can be found at:

Screening as part of Japan 2020: Over 100 years of Japanese Cinema, a UK-wide film season supported by National Lottery and BFI Film Audience Network.