This meditative selection of the 2011 Sundance Film Festival stars real-life rocker Suneohair as anarchic noise rocker Jonen. The film introduces him as a violent stage presence that specializes in distortion and self-abuse, but fast forward a few years and Jonen has unpredicatably settled down with a family and a new profession as a Zen Buddhist monk. While speaking at a local high school Career Day, Jonen’s unrealized inner turmoil boils up and he sets off on a required path towards a return to his roots.
Abraxas has the lightly comedic, heavily inspiring atmosphere that characterizes many a major Japanese film from Shall We Dance to Departures. Both heartbreaking and revelatory, this is perhaps the first film that accurately conveys the true musical beauty and power of heavily distorted noise. Highly recommended.
Abraxas makes its Philadelphia Premiere this Thursday at 7:30 PM at the Prince Music Theater courtesy of the Philadelphia Japan Arts Matsuri.