Is Japan a strange country?


I often hear people from other countries saying “Japan is a strange country”.

When they come to Japan, they seem to get culture shocks in many ways.

There is an interesting cartoon movie about Japan, titled “Japan -The Strange Country”, and it was created by a young Japanese designer.

Since this video made me think a lot, I want to introduce it to you.

The creator is Kenichi, who lives in [W:Nagoya].


This is his description for the movie.

“This is my final thesis project. I created info-graphic, motion piece. My objective is to make Japanese people to think about that everything happening here in Japan, isn’t that normal. So I created this video from foreigner’s point of view, rather than Japanese people’s point of view.
Both English and Japanese versions are available.
By the way, please don’t call me racist, because I am one of short, small eyes Japanese ;P”


Japan-The Strange Country (English ver.) from Kenichi on Vimeo.


In Kenichi’s website, there are a lot of comments on his video.

Most of them are from people in other countries, but there are a few from Japanese. Let me show you a couple of them.


“It’s kind of self-torturing but interesting. On what standard, do you say Japanese are short? There are lots of countries have the same average height as that of Japanese in the world. As well as small eyes. It sounds like many forests are cut down for disposal chopsticks but actually most of them are made of scrap woods.”

“The video itself is excellent. But just like other comments, I think it was too simplified. It could plant negative image. Since I have lived in a foreign country for a long time, it’s a little disappointing. Please make different county’s one too. Japan is not as strange as you think.”

“The video was so great! I was impressed! There is no lie and so true to the reality. I want to show it to ordinary people. But there are lots of strange things in other countries, so I think Japan is better than those. The prices are right, the towns are safe, the people are kind, good food, beautiful nature, deep history, many cultures, I think Japan is a wonderful country!”


The comments on the video can be seen in this page and this page.

My opinion on this movie is that I don’t think he is sending wrong information through the movie but he simplified Japan too much.

I just couldn’t smile after seeing this.

Living in Japan everyday, there are also fun and touching moments of course, so if those things were introduced in the movie, my impression could be different.


Still, I think there is significance of his movie, and the construction and how he conveys are well done, so I want to applaud him.

If you are interested, visit Kenichi’s website below.





This is JAPAN Style!


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