小田香ODA Kaori
  • Japan
  • DCP



On April 1, 1945, US troops invaded Okinawa, sparking a brutal WWII battle. Many civilians hiding in caves were misled into believing they would face American brutality if they surrendered and chose suicide. In caves, Mitsuo Matsunaga narrates their tragic end in a monotone, revealing the underground agony of Okinawa's inhabitants.

'GAMA was shot entirely in Okinawa but its production was initially made possible through a partnership with the Toyonaka Performing Arts Center. When I came to a dead end while researching underground sites in Toyonaka, I learned that there was a connection between Toyonaka and Okinawa. My area of research started to go in the direction of underground spaces in Okinawa and I descended into Okinawa's underground. Knowing nothing about the limestone caves myself, Matsunaga Mitsuo, who appears in GAMA, spoke to me about the memories of these caves that had been handed down to him.

'Towards the end of shooting, he said, "I'm Matsunaga Mitsuo, of the generation born after the war," in referring to himself. For some reason I winced upon hearing it. After I let it sink in, it resonated within my body as if they were pointing me to the direction in which this work should go. These memories were passed down to him, and we are allowed to observe one part of these inherited memories as they are left behind in the form of this film. I think that this process itself is what GAMA is about.' - ODA Kaori (Excerpted from the festival catalogue of the 2023 Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival)

Festivals & Awards
2023 Yamagata IDFF
2023 IDFA
Director's Profile
ODA Kaori

Born in Osaka, Japan, in 1987, Oda Kaori is a filmmaker and artist. Through images and sounds, her works explore memories of human beings. She completed the Doctor of Liberal Arts in Filmmaking under the supervision of Béla Tarr in 2016. Her first feature, Aragane (2015) shot in a Bosnian coal mine, had its world premiere at Yamagata International Film Festival and received Special Mention. The film has been screened at festivals such as Doclisboa, Mar del Plata IFF, Sarajevo FF, TIDF, and more. Her second feature, Toward A Common Tenderness (2017), a poetic film research, had its world premiere at DOK Leipzig. Her latest film, Cenote (2019), shot in underwater caves in Yucatan Mexico, premiered in the Bright Future section at IFFR 2020. She received the Inaugural Nagisa Oshima Prize in 2020 and the New Face Award of the Minister of Education Award for Fine Arts in 2021.

2010 Thus a Noise Speaks
2011 The Wanderer
2012 The Thread of Red Cocoons
2014 Conniving
2014 Lost in Bosnia
2015 Flash
2015 Aragane
2017 Toward A Common Tenderness
2017 Theory of Colours: Prologue
2017 Ten
2018 Tune
2018 Wind Church
2019 Cenote
2019 Night Cruise
2021 Night Train
2022 Karaoke Cafe Bosa
2023 GAMA
Producer|TSUTSUI Ryohei, SUGIHARA Eijun
Editor/Sound Design|ODA Kaori
Cinematographer|TAKANO Yoshiko
Sound|NAGASAKI Hayato
Print Source


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