Directed by Shinji Aoyama

The sensational novel by Shinya Tanaka, “Tomogui (Dog-Eat-Dog),” which garnered attention nationwide for winning this year’s Akutagawa Prize – one of the most prestigious Japanese literary awards – will be adapted into a film by director Shinji Aoyama (“Sad Vacation” and “EUREKA”).


In 1988, Toma, aged 17, lived with his father, who was engaged in some shady dealings, and his mistress Kotoko in a town by a river. He would sometimes visit his mother, Jinko, who ran a fish shop on the other side of the river, and have her prepare the fish he caught in the river.

Daily witnessing his father’s abusive sex with Kotoko, Toma felt repulsed, yet was acutely aware of the fact that the same blood ran in his veins. Then, he became engrossed in burgeoning sexuality that he ventured into with his girlfriend, Chigusa Aida. Their relationship, however, came to an abrupt end one day, when he turned violent towards her during sex, just like Father.

In the meantime, Kotoko, pregnant with Father’s child, ran away from home when the whole town is flooded by the approaching typhoon. Enraged, Father went on search for her, only to come across Chigusa in a shrine he happened to pass by, where she was waiting for Toma to make up with him.

Director's Profile : Shinji Aoyama

An award winning director Shinji Aoyama was nominated for Golden Palm for "Desert Moon" in 2001 and won FIPRESCI Prize and Ecumenical July for "Eureka", as well as nominated for Golden Palm in 2000.

In 1996, Shinji Aoyama made "Helpless" a film set in his native Fukuoka, starring Tadanobu Asano. His 2000 film "EUREKA" also set in Fukuoka, opened at the Cannes Film Festival where it received both the FIPRESCI prize and the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury. Together with the 2007 film "Sad Vacation" that was officially invited to Venice International Film Festival in its ORIZONTTI section, "EUREKA" and "Helpless" comprise Aoyama's <Kitakyushu Saga>. Aoyama's literary output includes his 2001 novelization of "EUREKA", which won the Yukio Mishima Prize, as well as the novel Hotel Chronicles, which was nominated for the Noma Literary Prize in 2005.

Aoyama's whole filmography including his latest and internationally acclaimed "TOKYO PARK", is available at


Directed by Shinji Aoyama
Producer: Naoki Kai / Writer: Haruhiko Arai
Cast: Masaki Suda, Misaki Kinoshita, Yukiko Shinora, Ken Mitsuishi / Yuko Tanaka
Original Story by Shinya Tanaka, "Tomoguri"(Published by Shueisha)
Production: Stylejam World Sales: Rezo
2013/Japanese/colour/102min/ 1: 2.35 / 5.1ch
© Shinya Tanaka/SHUEISHA, 2013 THE BACKWATER Film Partners


Scene Photos