Zushi Beach located in Kanagawa is only about an hour train ride from Tokyo. It is a popular getaway for Tokyoites looking to escape the stifling summer heat and for the past six years has been the host of the Zushi Beach Film Festival. The festival takes place during the end of April through the first week in May, otherwise known as Golden Week. (Golden Week is a collection of four national holidays within a seven day period. It is one of Japan’s three busiest holiday seasons, besides New Year and the Obon week.)
A giant 300-inch screen is placed on the sand and patrons seated on folding chairs and blankets enjoy an eclectic selection of films ranging from Hollywood blockbusters, Indy films to pop culture classics. Each day of the festival has a different theme with a coordinating film screened after sunset. On some days, there are talks or slideshows which precede the film.
There are food stands and a shopping bazaar set up on site and they too change daily in order to keep up with the going theme of the day. Bringing food and beverages from outside is prohibited in an effort to help support the businesses that participate in the annual film festival.
Although it is a film festival, a day of fun at the beach is encouraged with areas set up for skateboarding, volleyball and wall climbing. There are also several workshops available for different age groups.
The event begins at 11:00 AM each day with the screenings taking place at 7:00 PM. Tickets are available at the entrance and cost ¥1,000 for adults and ¥500 for junior high school students. Elementary school students and younger children are admitted for free.
During Golden Week, beaches and other recreational spots become quite crowded but do not let that deter you from enjoying a day at Zushi Beach and experiencing an outdoor film festival like no other. The beach is approximately a 15 minute walk from the JR Zushi Station.
Web page: http://zushifilm.com/