The Cats of Mirikitani

( 3 )

Overview

Filmmaker Linda Hattendorf offers a remarkable profile of a man who, after surviving one of the most shameful episodes in American history, finds his nation preparing to make the same mistakes all over again. Jimmy Tsutomu Mirikitani is an elderly man of Japanese heritage who lives on the streets of New York City, where he makes a meager living peddling his drawings. Mirikitani specializes in sketches of cats, but that's hardly the only thing he draws. When he was a young man, Mirikitani lived in California ...
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Overview

Filmmaker Linda Hattendorf offers a remarkable profile of a man who, after surviving one of the most shameful episodes in American history, finds his nation preparing to make the same mistakes all over again. Jimmy Tsutomu Mirikitani is an elderly man of Japanese heritage who lives on the streets of New York City, where he makes a meager living peddling his drawings. Mirikitani specializes in sketches of cats, but that's hardly the only thing he draws. When he was a young man, Mirikitani lived in California during World War II and found himself in an internment camp in Tule Lake, CA, where Japanese-Americans were stripped of their rights and locked away because of racist assumptions about their loyalties; his years in Tule Lake are a common subject in his more personal work. In the wake of the terrorist attacks of 9/11/2001, Mirikitani found life in New York City harder than ever for the homeless, and filmmaker Hattendorf, who had struck up an acquaintance with the artist, offered to let him move into her home. As Mirikitani slowly but surely takes over Hattendorf's flat under the gaze of her camera, he shares with her horrifying stories of his days in internment, discusses the emotional scars that have yet to heal from his experiences, and his growing rage over the casual racism that has taken over New York in the wake of 9/11 -- racism which mirrors his own experiences in the 1940s. The Cats of Mirikitani was screened in competition at the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival.
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Special Features

Additional Scenes; Image Gallery; Trailer
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/12/2010
  • UPC: 767685208557
  • Original Release: 2006
  • Rating:

  • Source: New Video Group
  • Time: 1:14:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 24,042

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Tsutomu Mirikitani Participant
Technical Credits
Linda Hattendorf Director, Cinematographer, Editor, Producer, Screenwriter
Keiko Deguchi Editor
Philippe Desloovere Sound/Sound Designer
Sally Jo Fifer Executive Producer
Joel Goodman Score Composer
Masa Yoshikawa Cinematographer, Producer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Cats of Mirikitani
1. January 2001 New York City [7:43]
2. Government Mistake [4:20]
3. Family Wiped Out [4:17]
4. September 2001 [4:37]
5. Hope and Hate [5:16]
6. Remembering Hiroshima [9:49]
7. Trust [10:06]
8. Renuncíant [4:57]
9. Never Retíre [10:47]
10. Tule Lake Pilgrimage [6:14]
11. Ghost People [1:23]
12. End Credits [3:52]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Cats of Mirikitani
   Play Feature
   Scene Selections
   Bonus Features
      Additional Scenes
         Interview With Professor Shimomura
         Seattle Family Reunion
         Meeting Janice Mirikitani
         Jimmy's First Solo Exhibition
         Return to Hiroshima
      Gallery
      Trailer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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(3)

4 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 19, 2012

    A Must See

    This is a fantastic movie. If you can't afford full retail here, you can get this moving movie as a DVD rental. Either way, watch it.

    Jimmy Tsutomu Mirikitani is an artist in the truest sense of the word and Linda Hattendorf's film brings his heartfelt story to the full light of day. Bravo and well done.

    Highest recommendation.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    DO NOT MISS: The Cats of Mirikitani

    The story is poignant, enraging, tender and impressive. It will draw you in, and give you inspiration to reach out to others. It is brings clarity and perspective on a terrible and embarrassing chapter in our history. It would be a brilliant film choice to show to High School and College students.

    Many will be able to relate to this film through their own experiences (or those of friends/family, etc), of oppression, racism, poverty, homelessness, broken families, and isolation as well as remaining hopeful in the face of fear and betrayal. The joy of being re-connected to family, finding friendship and a sense of belonging, and the freedom and inspiration in artistic expression that comes from such a deep, lonely place is incredibly moving. This is a great film.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews