Echoes from the Miike Mine

Zakka Films Presents

Echoes from the Miike Mine

Institution: US $180.00
Individual: US $30.00



On March 30, 1997, the Miike Coal Mine, the largest mine in Japan, ceased operations. The burden of its history, however, is still being borne by many: a chronicle of prisoners used in the mine, forced labor, strikes, and coal dust explosions. This documentary is the first to directly confront the legacy of the Miike Mine, reviving through eyewitness testimonies a history of struggle lasting 150 years that modern Japan is trying to forget. It took seven years to complete, interviewing over 70 individuals, from the men and women who signed up to do this backbreaking work and lived in pride by the mountain, to the Koreans who were forcibly brought to Japan and made to work down the shaft. The director Hiroko Kumagai hopes that we look at Miike not just to explore the past, but also to think about the future: what it means to work and to live courageously.

“An unforgettable labor—and therefore human—history written in the visual and aural language of emotion, supported by stunning footage” (from DVD leaflet)

——Norma Field, Professor/University of Chicago

'Echoes from the Miike Mine,' from Zakka Films

  • Vendor: Hiroko Kumagai
  • Language: Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Technical Information: DVD, All Region Free, NTSC
  • Package Details: DVD Jacket (English), Leaflet (English)


Director: Hiroko Kumagai
Producer: City of Omuta
Production Company: Office Kumagai
Camera: Koshiro Otsu
Editor: Tomiyo Ohashi

Japan Congress of Journalists Prize (2006)
Committee for the Revival of Japanese Film Prize (2006)
Cinema Front Japanese Film Best 10 (2006)
Kinema Junpo Documentary Film Best 10 (2006)

REVIEWS: Japan Times (August 14, 2011)