Danchi Women

An old woman living in an old Danchi, a symbolic of Japan’s high economic growth. A behind of the glory is emerged in Yokohama.


Year: 2017
Duration: 71 min.
Production format: 35mm (HDV transferred to film)
Sound format: Stereo

Location: Yokohama
Language: English or Japanese
Genre: Human documentary

Production companies: IMPLEO INC. and Assemblage K.K.
Director: Akiko Sugimoto
Producers: Seiko Kato and Alexandre Bartholo

製作年: 2017
尺: 71 分.
フォーマット: 35mm (HDV transferred to film)
音声: ステレオ

ロケーション: 横浜
言語: 英語版、日本語版
ジャンル: ヒューマン・ドキュメンタリー

製作会社: IMPLEO INC. 、Assemblage K.K.
監督: 杉本曉子
プロデューサー: 加藤成子、 Alexandre Bartholo

Danchi Woman is about a woman who lives alone among a pile of cardboard boxes reaching the ceiling and a mountain of analog home appliances. She is Shizu UCHIKOSHI, 85 years old. 30 years ago, she moved into a “danchi” or housing complex in Yokohama near Tokyo. A danchi, where she lives, is scheduled to be demolished and all residents have to move out. Besides, a young money broker, who sometimes visits her, gives her a TV while she can’t remember his name still.
This program portrays a positive UCHIKOSHI who simply lives in Seaside Road Danchi despite her aging body and loneliness, facing the problem of demolishing and moving out.

Background ~Filming started in 2008~

SUGIMOTO came across Seaside Road Danchi 8 years ago. The abandoned look of the apartment buildings against the overwhelming skyscrapers impressed her a lot. She wondered “what lives are inside these buildings” and started filming there. Once she began filming, she learned that the apartment buildings would soon be replaced. In 2008 and thereafter, she visited the apartment buildings every weekend with a video camera in hand. Later, she edited her ten months of video footage into her independent film, “Seaside Road Danchi Story” in June 2009.

Director’s Statement ~Living alone, dying alone, but still smiling~

“Living alone in old age?”, “With or without family?”, “Living in rental housing forever?”, etc. I was forced to face these issues during the filming of the lives of these women. No one can escape from aging. What’s more, injuries and accidents sometimes change the living environment of people. This film follows the replacement of some apartment buildings in Yokohama. This topic is a local issue, but it also includes themes such as the life of women and rental housing for senior citizens. I believe these themes are common issues for people all over the world.

Director: Akiko SUGIMOTO

Born idirectorn 1979 in Tokyo. After graduating from university, SUGIMOTO worked for a television production company. After working in various industries outside the visual industry for several years, she studied scriptwriting. Since 2008, SUGIMOTO has visited Seaside Road Danchi in Yokohama and completed her own independent film, “Seaside Road Danchi Story” in 2009. The film was screened at the “CREAM International Festival for Arts and Media Yokohama” and independently mainly in Yokohama. SUGIMOTO is interested in recording and presenting some of the “lives” of people in “housing complexes” in Japan and the world.