Hula Girls is the find of the whole San Diego Asian Film Festival for me! I saw the subbed version last night, and it blew me away! Funny, sad and truly heartwarming. It's even true – there really is such a place in Japan – a northern (cold) mining town, that found prosperity through a most unlikely "Hawaiian Paradise" theme park in the mid-sixties, when there was a Hula craze sweeping Japan.
This is also a perfect movie for The Princesses, since their Mom is a Hula dancer and it's Japanesey like them. Only being subbed could be a problem though, since they don't really read yet! ^^
UPDATE: Hula Girls is available for pre-order from yesasia.com! This is the Region 1 subbed version…
It is 1965 and Mary Quant's miniskirts have not yet reached the remote town of Joban, but exciting, new changes are definitely blowin' in the wind. With the end of the Korean War, the enormous demand for coal has dropped significantly and the golden years for the Joban Coal Mining Company are drawing to a close. Will the town survive the massive layoff of its workers? Will the dream of transforming the sooty mines into a lavish spa resort come true?