The erotic novelist Taeko is writing a morbid story of a family destroyed by incest, murder and abuse. Her assistant, Yuji, sets on a mission to uncover the reality of this story, but the reality might be too much to bear.
In Okayama in the mid-1930s, Kiroku attends high school and boards with a Catholic family whose daughter, Michiko, captures his heart. He must, however, hide his ardor and other aspects of ... See full summary »
A band of runaways and orphans of the war scour the countryside in search of food and shelter. They invade and then taken in by a musician and former concert pianist who's hiding out in a ... See full summary »
A high school student named Yu has a crush on one of her classmates, Yosuke. The boy spends most of his time sitting outside and playing his guitar, and Yu sits nearby and listens. One day,... See full summary »
20 years ago, an elementary school student falls on an island in the northern tip of Hokkaido. A teacher and 6 students makes contact through songs. What happened to the student who fell? ... See full summary »
Ginko seems to be living the good life: She's the respectable owner of a neighborhood drug store in Tokyo, and her daughter Koharu is about to get married to a doctor. However, Koharu's ... See full summary »
'Face' is a fascinating and difficult to categorize movie. Naomi Fujiyama gives an impressive performance (her movie debut) as the frumpy, clumsy and socially retarded Masako who one day strangles the pretty sister who loves to torment her. Masako flees from her home and then goes on a journey, both physically and emotionally, which ranges from everything from rape, earthquakes, learning to ride a bicycle, and working in a karaoke bar. All kinds of things both big and small, serious and trivial. What makes the movie consistently fascinating is the fresh approach of the unpredictable script and direction by Junji Sakamoto, a film maker I am not familiar with. 'Face' isn't really either a true life crime portrait of a murderer or a saccharine women-overcomes-the-odds-and-finally-learns-how-to-live movie that Hollywood churns out. It's somewhere in between. And how much if any sympathy or empathy you feel for Masako will depend on the individual viewer. It isn't an obvious movie, and that's what I enjoyed about it. It may not be everybody's cup of tea but I liked it a lot.
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