Life isn't easy for a group of high school kids growing up absurd in Japan's pervasive pop/cyber culture. As they negotiate teen badlands- school bullies, parents from another planet, lurid... See full summary »
Nine convicts escape from prison; most are convicted murders. They commandeer a van from a strip club. Their plan is to find a stash of counterfeit money that a deranged cell mate told them... See full summary »
A spell of time in the life of a family living in rural Tochigi prefecture, north of Tokyo. Though her husband is busy working at an office, Yoshiko is not an ordinary housewife, instead ... See full summary »
A young woman's husband apparently commits suicide without warning or reason, leaving behind his wife and infant. Yumiko remarries and moves from Osaka to a small fishing village, yet ... See full summary »
Two young guys work in a plant that manufactures oshibori (those moist hand-towels found in some Japanese restaurants). Their weird bond is based on uncontrollable rage--something neither ... See full summary »
Kenji, abandoned by his mother, scrapes out a meager existence doing odd jobs including driving bar hostesses and their customers home. Besides this he takes care of the sister of an old ... See full summary »
Yasuo is a gangster just released from jail. Believing his boss double-crossed him, enraged Yasuo is on his way to find the boss. But before setting out for the dangerous trip, Yasuo asks ... See full summary »
Three couples are staying at a lakeside cottage with their children. They want them to prepare intensely for a prestigious high school's entrance exam with the help of a private tutor. One ... See full summary »
Survivors of a random act of violence struggle to continue living
It has been almost 6 years since I saw this film, yet this film can stick with me and still offer me things.
After a tragic incident of violence, a bus driver tries to find two other teen-aged survivors, a brother and sister. The sparse black and white camera work provide an insight into the bleak emotional landscape as they just stumble through as "walking dead". Having lost a father, I can identify with the characters. What is touching is the lack of communication and dialogue between the actors (whic includes the lead of the Japanese "Shall We Dance" ). Yet there is love and communication made even by just the thumping on bus walls. Words fail them.
The camera work is bleak yet stunning in composition and texture. Minimal yet just enough to feel the principals trying to find meaning in life. One can also speak of the Japanese economic downturn and the resulting introspective dramatic films such as Hirokazu's "After Life". If have experienced grief or if you'd like to find some insight into it, this may be a film. It seemed shorter than the four hours, but you are forewarned.
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