Plot & Details
The almost-forgotten Billiken rage hit Japan in 1908 -- it was a weird, American-imported, seated figure with a pointy head and pot belly that looked a bit like the Japanese god for fortune and luck that adorned many buildings of that era. Noted filmmaker Junji Sakamoto uses this ungainly icon to spin this comic fantasy about the ever changing face of Japan's second city -- Osaka. Once a noted feature of Osaka landmark Tsutenkaku Tower, the Billiken was crated up and forgotten in a stairwell. One day the crate falls and the statue is smashed, freeing its spirit Tetsuta Sugimoto). At first, the apparition is happy to be free of his physical constraints and is raring to change the fortunes of any and all. Though the skeptical are many, he manages to convince a ne'er-do-well yakuza trying to go straight that he is the real thing. Unfortunately, when the sprite tries to reattach the gangster's severed pinky, he puts the thing on backwards. Other good deeds prove to be more successful, and soon he is swamped with people looking for luck. The bad guy of the film -- an evil businessman in a silk suit (Ryutaro Gan) -- wants to tear down Tsutenkaku Tower, the source of Billiken's powers. Will Japan's yen-mad business practices succeed?
- Director(s): Junji Sakamoto