I don't think I've ever seen a movie that manages to be both funny and sad at the exact same time, essentially throughout it's entire running time. We're introduced to Eburi, a chubby employee of an advertisement company who's single joy seems to be the one day a week he goes out drinking. However, his life is about to change. His drunken rantings has caught the attention of two journalists, who he, in his drunken state, promises to write a masterpiece of a novel. Not finding anything better to write about, he starts recalling his own life.
Using every means to convey a story; from animation, to aesthetics of silent cinema to stop motion The Elegant Life of Mr. Everyman is filled with playfulness, creativity and soul. Eburi's observations of life are poignant, feels true to life and are of a irresistibly humorous manner. Kihachi Okamoto truly manages to capture what could very well be called the essence of life, or at least these peoples essence of life. Everyone in this movie, that are given a decent amount of screen time, feels like real people. It's never glamorous, everybody are flawed, and it's all related through the keenest observation. The movie notes the trite situation of life, the everyday struggle through reality, and it does it like no other movie I've ever seen before.
I sat bewitched. Laughing out loud at numerous occasion, while never losing my smile, yet feeling the underlying sorrow in almost every scene. Sometimes the tragedy takes precedence, but in the next minute I'm essentially rolling around in uncontrollable laughter because the scene and mood turned 180 degrees. Essentially every aspect of this movie is perfect. It's creative artistic touches, beautiful visuals, in-depth performances all compliments each other. It manages to be hilarious, intensely captivating and profound. I take my hat off to Okamoto, who has now earned a solid spot among my favorite directors.
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