Kamei Fumio Retrospective [Post-War Documentary Films]

All Living Things Are Friends—Lullabies of Birds, Insects and Fish

(“Seibutsu mina tomodachi kyoiku hen: Tori mushi sakana no komori uta”)
- 1987 / Color / 16mm / 165 min

Narration: Kobayashi Kyoji
Song: Kato Tokiko
Staff: Abe Yutaka, Arase Mitsuo, Ishikura Masako, Imai Shigeyuki, Imai Hiroshi, Ueno Tamako, Ono Tadashi, Ono Matsuo, Ono Yoshinobu, Katto Isamu, Kikuchi Shu, Kusunoki Tokuo, Takasaka Satoshi, Kobayashi Ken, Kondo Katsuyuki, Shimizu Shizue, Segawa Hiroshi, Takaiwa Hitoshi, Takahashi Tatsuo, Takizawa Rinzo, Tajima Tadanori, Tanikawa Yoshio, Tezuka Yo, Tokizane Shohei, Nakao Kanji, Nakano Kunio, Nishi Keiko, Nozaki Keizo, Hamada Hideo, Fujibayashi Shinji, Mori Takuji, Yano Chikara, Watanabe Kazuhiko, Watanabe Masami
Production Company: The All Living Things Are Friends Production Committee
Source: Japan Document Film

This film was begun under the working title The Man Who Became a Bird: A Cinema Essay by Kamei Fumio. It starts with shots of Alaskan wilderness and red salmon spawning, then moves to the Tokara Islands (near Tanegashima in southern Japan), Kamakura and areas deep in the mountains of Chichibu. Themes such as the earth, the environment, society, education and the relationship between human beings and nature about which Kamei had long considered are related via the narration. At the end of the film, as dinosaur bones are shown, the narration tells us, “Listen, you humans!! Too much is too little. Too much strength is no good. Too much size is no good. Look at me! Look at me well.” It continues, “We’d better heed the dinosaur’s warning—the antidote for reckless knowledge is wisdom. We must set our sights on coexistence rather than wanton competition; we must remember that we can be satisfied even if we make sacrifices.” Over 20 film companies contributed film footage. The staff consisted entirely of volunteers and all production costs were covered by donations. The film took three years to produce. Kamei fell ill in December 1986, but finished the last of the editing to complete this, his last film. He passed away the following year.

• Kamei Fumio Retrospective [Pre-War Works] Hiking Song | Shape without Shape | An Introduction to Radio: The Audience | School Broadcasting | The Geology of Fuji | Airspace [Pre-War Documentary Films] Shanghai | Peking | Fighting Soldiers | Kobayashi Issa [Post-War Documentary Films] A Japanese Tragedy | Children of the Base | The People of Sunagawa | Wheat Will Never Fall | Still It’s Good to Live | Record of Blood: Sunagawa | The World Is Terrified: The Reality of the “Ash of Death” | Living in a Rough Sea | Fluttering Pigeons | Voice of Hiroshima | Men Are All Brothers | Towards a World without Arms | All Must Live: People, Insects and Birds | All Living Things Are Friends—Lullabies of Birds, Insects and Fish [Feature Films] War and Peace | A Woman’s Life | Become a Mother, Become a Woman | Woman Walking Alone on the Earth [PR and Educational Films] Poem of Life | Invitation to Japanese Architecture | Penmanship | Quiet Construction Methods | Living with Ideas: A Profile of Sharp | Let’s Weave a Rainbow | Hong Kong, Taipei | Norihei Travel Manners | The Southern Cross Is Calling | Wishing for Tomorrow’s Happiness [Other Works] Underwear Makes the Woman | The Models and the Photographer | Kamei on Kamei: A Record of Yesterday’s Film Production Discussion Group | Human Conceit: The World of Director Kamei Fumio