A film by Cláudia Varejão


The Ama-San - the women of the sea - for a great variety of seafoods for over 2000 years. Most of them are between 50 and 85 years old. What they do, challenges the traditional role of women in oriental society, as well as the very nature of femininity itself. The film follows the everyday lives of three women of different ages who have dived together in the sea around a small fishing village on the Shima peninsular for 30 years. Shot between the silent, underwater world and rural life on land, this film is a unique portrait of a tradition that is not expected to survive much longer.

«The closer I got to know these women, the more I looked at the hidden sea inside the Ama-San.»
Cláudia Varejão

More Infos

  • Credits


    Mayumi Mitsuhashi 三 橋 ま ゆ み

    Masumi Shibahara 柴 原 真 澄

    Matsumi Koiso 小 磯 松 美

    Director, camera

    Cláudia Varejão

    Assistent director

    Aya Koretzky 是 月 文


    Takashi Sugimoto 杉 本 崇

    Special camera

    Masakazu Akagi 赤 木 正 和


    João Braz

    Cláudia Varejão

    Editor assistents

    Diogo Allen

    Joana Góis

    Maria Maranha

    Color grading

    Paulo Américo Da Silva

    Intern color grading

    Yulia Pak

    Sound Design and pre-mix

    Hugo Leitão

    Sound mix

    Dominik Avenwedde

    Coordination sound post-production

    Daniel Almada

    Production manager Portugal

    Bárbara Valentina Japão

    Miho Fukushima 福 嶋 美 穂

    Coordination production

    Celeste Alves

    Coordination post-production

    Marta Lemos

    Business affaires

    Mariana Vasco

    Technical supervisor

Rui Xavier


    ilhas studio


    Bikini Visual Effects and Animation

    Attic Sound Lisbon

    Dubbing Stage Tonbüro, Berlin


    Isolda Chiho Rodrigues

    Etsuko Motoki 悦 子 元 木

    Francisca Cortesão

    Maho Kinoshita

    Luisa Yokochi

    Takashi Sugimoto 杉 本 崇

    David Nist (Jvta)

    Subtitling & Translation English

    Submarines – Subtitling & Translation German and French


    Terratreme Filmes

    João Matos

    Leonor Noivo

    Luísa Homem

    Pedro Pinho

    Susana Nobre

    Tiago Hespanha

    Coproduction Switzerland

Mira Film


    Vadim Jendreyko

    Associate Producer

    Hercli Bundi

    Backoffice Switzerland

    Nadine Forster

    In coproduction with

    Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen SRF


    Urs Augstburger SRG SSR

    Sven Wälti 

  • Technical Details
    Duration112 min
    Original LanguageJapanese
    SubtitlesEnglish, Portugese
  • Festivals

    17th Kaohsiung Film Festival

    October 20, 2017 - November 05, 2017

    64th Sydney Film Festival

    June 07, 2017 - June 18, 2017

    57th Krakow Film Festival

    May 28, 2017 - June 04, 2017

    19th Docaviv International Documentary Film Festival Tel Aviv

    May 11, 2017 - May 20, 2017

    14th CPH:DOX International Documentary Film Festival Copenhagen

    March 16, 2017 - March 26, 2017

    32° Festival Internacional de Cine de Guadalajara, Competition

    March 10, 2017 - March 17, 2017

    19th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival

    March 03, 2017 - March 12, 2017

    15th DocPoint Helsinki Documentary Film Festival

    January 23, 2017 - January 29, 2017

    3° Porto Post Doc Film & Media Festival, Competition

    November 26, 2016 - December 04, 2016

    57° Festival dei Popoli Firenze, Competition

    November 25, 2016 - December 02, 2016

    10. Fünf Seen Filmfestival, Competition

    July 27, 2016 - August 07, 2016

    51st Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, Competition

    July 01, 2016 - July 09, 2016

    22e Visions du Réel Festival international de cinéma Nyon, Competition

    April 15, 2016 - April 23, 2016

  • Awards

    Fünf Seen Filmfestival 2016

    Lobende Erwähnung - Dokumentarfilmpreis

    International Filmfestival Karlovy Vary 2016

    Special Jury Mention

    Porto Post Doc: Film & Media Festival 2016

    Teenage Award

    doclisboa Festival Internacional de Cinema Documental 2016

    Íngreme/Doclisboa Award for Best Portuguese Competition Film