Tamako is a 13-year-old girl in her first year at high school. Her grandfather (Kenzo) returns home from prison and proceeds to deal with her school bullies. As Tamako starts to gain ... See full summary »
Tamako is a 13-year-old girl in her first year at high school. Her grandfather (Kenzo) returns home from prison and proceeds to deal with her school bullies. As Tamako starts to gain respect for her grandfather the pair find themselves being summoned by the local Yakuza leader. Written by
The story revolves around the grandpa, Godai Kenzo, who we learn has spent the last 13 years of his life in the local prison somewhere in Tochigi-ken, and is released and comes back to the house of his adult son, who is married and has a middle school daughter named Tamako. Godai's wife does not want to have anything to do with her husband and leaves for Nagoya.
Apparently, Godai had killed someone associated with the local mob, which is why he ended up in prison, but the motive for the crime is not what one would think.
The story is about the friendship between the elderly Godai and his granddaughter Tamako. The movie captures life outside the big city, and how young kids who start as bullies there who veer off the path, can end up in a lifestyle of thugs.
The pace holds one's attention, and there are a couple of tense scenes, but it does not resort to gratuitous violence, the characters are well developed, and there are subtle scenes of comedic relief to balance the somewhat serious message of crime and redemption. If you are expecting an action mystery, this is not the movie for you, but I enjoyed the slice of Japanese life, and how people can change their ways.
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