Tokyo idols

Tokyo idols

DVD - 2017 | Japanese
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Documentary getting at the heart of a cultural phenomenon driven by an obsession with young female sexuality and internet popularity. With a provocative look into the Japanese pop music industry and its focus on traditional beauty ideals, filmmaker Kyoko Miyake confronts the nature of gender power dynamics at work.
Publisher: Brooklyn, NY : KimStim, Inc., [2017]
Copyright Date: ©2017
Branch Call Number: JAPANESE ENGLISH 781.630952 TOK
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (approximately 88 minutes) : DVD video, digital ; 12 cm
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1KLIP1
May 07, 2018

One can say a lot about men and their outlook in life when life is not easy for them at the home front - work work work but little love at home or not any at all. At least these Idols create something for them to hang on to, to give some meaning to their life. Are these girls really abused? One wonder about it - if it was so, would so many young girls line up to be abused? I believe it is a job with easy perks - just like prostitution. Women enters because it is easy to enter and not always by force. Ms. Minori Kitahara, is a super-critic of the idol industry here, but one must ask her the question if singing was ever hard for a talented singer?

s
StarGladiator
Feb 24, 2018

This is a fascinating documentary on the idol segment of Japan's entertainment industry - - and it most definitely is a facet, a winnowing process, for their entertainment sector. Prior to watching this enlightening documentary, I was confused by what I'd read about the idol industry: on the one hand, there were articles about creepy old guys showering attention on teenaged Japanese female idols while other articles made it sound like an entry-level segment of the Japanese entertainment industry, which indeed it is!
Most of the male fans - - and there are young and old female fans - - appear to range in age between 20 to 35 years old. For some it appears to be a male-bonding experience, more of older brothers showing support for younger siblings - - quite tribal in nature, and therefore quite Japanese. [It had never occurred to me - - prior to viewing this - - that given the rigid Japanese social structure there really aren't any equality-based group activities for the Japanese male - - now I grasp the popularity of those Samurai/Ronin themes!]
The documentary focuses on the young and sweet [and very industrious and hardworking] Rio, who like the other idol participants, is seeking to break into the highly competitive entertainment sector. To a neutral observer [IMHO, myself] it appears like one gigantic Mickey Mouse Club, with young female idols winning popularity contests [voted on by active, money-spending fan-consumers] to reach the next level, i.e., a singing contract, a voice part in a new Anime production, a movie or TV role, et cetera.
A lot of grueling work is undertaken by these young and hardworking idols, regardless of whether they succeed or fail!
And the idol industry seems like a predictable response to the devastating financial hits the Japanese economy has suffered these past 20-some years [with at least some blame going to the world's central bank, the Bank for International Settlements].
I can't imagine myself spending sums of money to support an idol [be a fan], but then I've never been a rock fan nor a sports fan, et cetera.
A Japanese feminist writer/journalist, Ms. Minori Kitahara, is a super-critic of the idol industry and suggests that the idols are feeding into men's fantasies, which may be accurate, except that it is structured - - entertainment industry-wise - - in the most meritocratic manner observable as entrance into an entertainment career - - which negates her commentary. Does journalist Kitahara wish to shut down the entire Japanese entertainment industry?
Justin Lowe, of The Hollywood Reporter, said this documentary // . . . reveals more contradictions than consensus \\ and he is exactly spot on!
From the link below:
http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/aalya-ahmad/2017/05/cyber-goddesses-tokyo-idols-and-men-who-worship-them

// Kitahara observes scornfully that men no longer have to work at real relationships -- they simply buy fantasies. \\
The question might also be asked, why do men have to work so much at real relationships today??? [This documentary brings to mind a common business plan in America whereby corporations staff their sales forces with mostly women when their target of the sale are men - - the old computer corporation, DEC, used to employ 75% of their sales force with women, and many other examples for this business model exist. Not saying I support it, simply that it IS the reality!]

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