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Big in Japan

Where to Watch Big in Japan


Big in Japan is a musical dramedy released in 2014 starring David Drury, John Jeffcoat, and Aya Kawahara. The film is a fictionalized recount of a surreal music tour that fuses indie rock, pop culture, and entertainment industries. John Jeffcoat, known for his work on Outsourced and Bingo Nights, directed the film. He also had a significant role as a character, alongside playing the role of director.

The protagonist, David Drury, plays a version of himself as a papier-mâché head-wearing bassist of a struggling Seattle band, Tennis Pro. The film opens with Drury and his bandmates Sean Lowry and Philip A. Peterson, struggling to gain recognition in their hometown’s overloaded indie music scene. They endure the discomfort of playing in empty bars and dealing with indifferent audiences.

When the band reaches a point of existential crisis, fed up with the lukewarm reception on the local Seattle scene, a quirky and bold decision is made. Driven by the urge to break free from the torpor they are in, they decide to take a leap of faith and follow the path to Japan, caring for nothing more than achieving their dreams and making a name for themselves. And so, the band uproots their lives, jet off to Tokyo in search of fame and success, with a plan of making an impression on the international stage.

Accompanying them is real-life documentarian John Jeffcoat, who not only directs the film but also features in it. He beautifully incorporates elements of reality and fiction in a humorous yet thought-provoking way, straddling the line between a genuinely impressive music documentary and an indie road movie. Jeffcoat's contributions both behind and in front of the camera enhance the film's layered narrative and charm.

Once in Japan, they encounter the eclectic and electrifying pop culture, owing to the vivacious performance of Aya Kawahara, who captures every aspect of Japan's eccentric entertainment industry. Through her feisty performance, we are given a glimpse into the idiosyncrasies and portrait of fame in the form of Japanese celebrity, TV shows, and the frenzied fanbase. This, in turn, paves the way for several comical and bewildering experiences for the fresh-to-Japanese-culture band members who are tossed into constant surprise and challenges.

Woven carefully into the comic and lighthearted narrative are some serious questions about the significance of fame, creativity, and personal value that each character wrestles with as the storyline progresses. These elements give the story its depth and authenticity, raising it above the typical fish-out-of-water narrative.

The music in the film is the backbone, consisting of infectious and energetic rock sounds underpinning the narrative. The soundtrack, rich in indie spirit, alone is worth the price of admission. It channels the confusion, frustration, joy, and hilarity the band members feel throughout their journey in foreign land.

In casting themselves and blurring the line between reality and fiction, the band members present an authentic depiction of the music world. The film strikes a chord as it delves into the struggles and triumphs of a band that refuses to give up on their dreams, making it as much a story about the resilience of the human spirit as it is about music and fame.

As the film moves toward its climax, it weaves a fascinating narrative about ambition, friendship, and self-discovery. Through a humorous and poignant lens, it provides a fresh perspective on the meaning of success and the lengths people are willing to go to attain it.

Big in Japan is a triumph of human spirit, laced with idealism, dreams, self-deprecation, and rock and roll. With vibrant performances, a running commentary of satirical humor, and infectious indie music, this film is sure to entertain audiences while leaving them with food for thought—a must-watch for fans of music and engaging filmmaking alike.

Big in Japan is a Comedy movie released in 2015. It has a runtime of 100 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 6.1..

How to Watch Big in Japan

Where can I stream Big in Japan movie online? Big in Japan is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at Amazon Prime, Pluto TV, Tubi TV, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD, Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Big in Japan for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.

John Jeffcoat
David Drury, John Jeffcoat, Aya Kawahara
Also directed by John Jeffcoat
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