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Can a candidate with no political experience and no charisma win an 
election if he is backed by the political giant Prime Minister 
Koizumi and his Liberal Democratic Party? This cinema-verite 
documentary closely follows a heated election campaign in Kawasaki, 
Japan, revealing the true nature of "democracy."

In the fall of 2005, 40-year-old, self-employed Kazuhiko "Yama-san" 
Yamauchi's peaceful, humdrum life was turned upside-down. Japanese 
Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) had 
suddenly chosen him as its official candidate to run for a vacant 
seat on the Kawasaki city council. Yama-san had zero experience in 
politics, no charisma, no supporters, no constituency, and no time to 
prepare for the impending election.

The election was critical for the LDP. Yama-san's loss would 
automatically oust the LDP from its position as the dominant 
political party on the council. Thus, the LDP forms a strong campaign 
team consisting of every LDP politician from the Kawasaki region to 
fight the intense battle against the party's opponents—all veterans 
of the Democratic Party, the Communist Party, and the Kanagawa 
Network. The campaign team invites many of the LDP's political big 
shots—Nobuteru Ishihara, Yoriko Kawaguchi, and even Prime Minister 
Koizumi himself—to back its inexperienced candidate—a rare sight 
for an election in a politically insignificant suburban town.  
Adhering to the campaign tactic of "bowing to everybody, even to 
telephone poles," Yama-san visits local festivals, kindergarten 
sports events, senior gatherings, commuter train stations, and even 
bus stops to offer his hand to every one he sees.
       
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