Film and TV

Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo Opens at FilmBar Thursday

Don't be fooled when you sit down for  Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo. You're not in for a Godzilla-type, ass-kicking, beetle taking over Japan's famous mega-city; You're actually in for something much better.

Writer-director-producer Jessica Oreck's debut film opens with a Japanese boy in an insect shop begging his dad fork over $57 for a beetle.

The film's actually full of bugs, but Oreck's purpose isn't to freak-out her audience. Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo explores the Japanese love of insects, not only in current pop culture, but throughout the ages.

Check out the film at downtown's new movie venue, Film Bar from Thursday, February 24 through Wednesday, March 2, and more information after the jump ...

Visually, the film's sprinkled with close-up shots of crickets, dragonflies, caterpillars and beetles, with shots of Zen gardens, children giggling at the sight of their squiggling, rainbow-shelled pet beetles and punk rockers with beetle-inspired pompadours.

And did we mention how big these beetles are? We're talking the kind of beetles you sacrifice a shoe for, but in Japan you'd scoop it up in your hand and say, "guess what kids, we've got a new member of the family!"

Beetle Queen's part philosophical and enlightening, but there's also a healthy dose of humor. Take the beetle-seller zipping down the highway in his Ferrari with all his bug-catching gear. Who knew insect-selling could be such a lucrative business?

The film in mostly narrated in Japanese with English subtitles save for a few passages in English, clocks in at 90 minutes and is not rated.

Along with Beetle Queen, Film Bar is also showing two other Japanese related films this weekend, Big Man Japan and A Colt Is My Passport, any of which would cap off a perfect day after soaking in Japanese culture and food at the Matsuri Festival.

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Theresa Cano
Contact: Theresa Cano