Abraxas follows the story of Buddhist Monk Jonen (Suneohair) who dreams of being a musician. Having left his old life as a punk singer behind, he’s now leading life as a dutiful monk, husband and father.
Jonen is clearly a man with issues and he sees music as a way to spiritually connect with the universe and excercise his demons. In his search for his sense of “self” he neglects everyone else around him, his depressed friend, pupils, hard working devoted wife and adorable child and even the monastery dog.
Jonen decides to launch his comeback in the small town he’s now resident in. After overcoming the hesitations of his wife, neighbours and colleagues he plays in the monastery’s courtyard making the neighbours wonder what all the to-do was about.
The film’s star Suneohair is well known in Japan but doesn’t have a fan base overseas needed to help Abraxas become popular in other countries. Although this film is well-thought out, visually quirky and has some great acting performances, it is unlikely to be enough to take it out of the festival circuit and onto a general release. If you want to see it on the big screen, the time to see it is now.
Japanese with English Subtitles. Abraxas will be shown as part of The International Buddhist Film Festival.