Free Film at the Asia Pacific Cultural Center

The film, Departures, will be playing for free this Thursday, February 21, at 7 p.m. at the Asia Pacific Cultural Center, located at 4851 S. Tacoma Way Tacoma, WA 98409. The film is directed by Yojiro Takita, and stars Masahiro Motoki, Ryoko Hirosue, Tsutomu Yamasaki. The film is 130 minutes and refreshments will also be available.

Departures is a 2008 drama that features Daigo Kobayashi, a devoted cellist in an orchestra that has just fell apart, and decides to move back to his hometown with his wife to look for work. He answers a classified ad titled “Departures”, thinking it is an advertisement for a travel agency only to discover that the job is actually for a funeral professional who prepares deceased bodies for burial and entry into the next life. While his wife and others despise his job, Daigo takes certain pride in his work and begins to perfect the art of “Nokanshi,” acting as a gentle gatekeeper between life and death, between the departed and the family of the departed.

Patsy Surh O’ Connell, Founder/President of the Asia Pacific Cultural Center, commented on what she thinks of the movie: “It is a very different subject matter but, I think as a community we have to know and go through learning other’s cultures. I thought this was handled very delicately and very beautifully in this film. I love the cello music which starts out in the movie.”

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Patsy discussed the best thing about the movie night, “I would like people to know that the possibility of the art walk that takes place in Tacoma could be extended to South Tacoma Way where we are located. I want people to come and learn about the Asia Pacific Cultural Center. We have the gallery space to view the art work as well. We have exhibiting artists every two months. Right now we have Lorraine Toler, an oil painter, that has painted about 12 paintings of the last empress of Korea and it’s going to be up until the end of this month. It is free for people to look at from 9 am to 5 pm Monday through Thursday at the Asia Pacific Cultural Center.”

Free movie nights at the Asia Pacific Cultural Center have taken place every month on the third Thursday of the month since September 2012.

When asked who she recommended come to the movie, Patsy replied, “I like to see the public learn culture through movies. The best thing about our movie experience is not only it’s free; we have discussion after the movie. We talk about the people from those countries and we’ve shown movies from the following cultures so far: Samoa, Korea, Vietnam, and Australia. There will be people who are from the culture that was hi-lited in the movie talking about their experiences. It’s really a learning experience and great interaction with other people.”

For more information about the event, please call the Asia Pacific Cultural Center at: 253 383-3900. “Come and experience the discussion of the movie. The movie is compelling. Here is a quote from Daniel Boorstine, a historian, “Trying to plan for the future without a sense of past is like trying to plant cut flowers.” (You don’t have roots Patsy explained).

By: Carly Calabrese, staff for

7 thoughts on “Free Film at the Asia Pacific Cultural Center”

  1. I’m going to check this movie out (sounds interesting and fun). This will be my first time going to a movie night with the APCC.

  2. I’ve actually heard of this movie a couple years ago. It had some really great reviews. I’ll see you there.

    1. This film was different than I expected, but a good movie. Since the APCC does a movie night the third Thurs. of every month, I’m wanting to recommend we watch the “Snow Flower and the Secret Fan.”

      I’ve never seen it, but it sounds good and maybe they’d want to show it since they show different Asian films at the APCC (Asia Pacific Cultural Center).

      1. I thought the over all movie was good. It makes people aware of the different cultures we have all around the world. And their beliefs as well. In this case when people die in Japan. Did you know that in Japan (and anyone correct me if I’m wrong) the traditional burial is cremation. Because Japan is a small country cemeteries like here in the US take up to much room.
        And yes we should see the next movie. I’m looking forward to it.

        1. The President didn’t seem too interested because she’s seen the movie and didn’t like the movie version vs. the book. We had the opportunity to get it when we were at Best Buy, but we didn’t.

          It looks like the film is $11.66 for the dvd new and to include shipping from Amazon.

  3. How do you know if you’ve never seen the movie? Like the saying goes “Don’t judge a book by its cover” the same goes for movies.

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