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I Want to Destroy America

<i>I Want to Destroy America</i> is a documentary about the life and career of musician Hisao Shinagawa, a Japanese singer/songwriter who has refused to give up on his elusive dream of success and stardom, regardless of personal cost and the solitary reality of his life. For over 50 years he has cast himself as the Japanese Bob Dylan. Moving from Tokyo to America in the 70s, following the footsteps of his hero Woody Guthrie, he befriended Johnny Cash and Townes Van Zandt after hitchhiking to Nashville. Now into his 60s, he plays his music on the streets of Los Angeles while living in near poverty, still hoping to find an audience in a manner that is admirable, bittersweet, and ultimately, heartbreaking.

  • Peter I. Chang
  • Mitch Cullin
  • Hisao Shinagawa
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Feature
  • Genres:
    documentary, music documentary, bio documentary, international, arthouse, independent
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 6 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    August 23, 2006
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    Japan, United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
    Black & White and Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Atlanta Underground Film Festival
    Atlanta, Georgia, USA
    August 23, 2006
    North American Premiere
  • Santa Fe Film Festival
    Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA
    December 8, 2006
  • Gallery Septima Filmmaker Retrospective
    Tokyo, Japan
    July 31, 2010
    Japan Premiere
  • Guild Cinema Special Events
    Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA
    December 12, 2015
Director Biography - Peter I. Chang

Peter I. Chang is a Taiwanese-born artist and filmmaker. <i>I Want to Destroy America</i> is his first feature documentary. His most recent feature, <i>Tokyo is Dreaming</i>, is a city symphony on various fragments of the megalopolis in the span of an entire day. The film had its world premiere at the Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival and its US premiere at the Phoenix Art Museum.

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