An earth-quake causes a nuclear crisis in a fictive Japanese prefecture. In wake of the disaster, the members of the Ono family who reside just outside the border of the mandatory ... See full summary »
Following the detonation of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the Japanese military and the government clash over the demand from the Allies for unconditional surrender. Minister ... See full summary »
Toward the end of World War II, middle-aged soldier Keita is entrusted with a postcard from a comrade who is sure he will die in battle. After the war ends, Keita visits his comrade's wife ... See full summary »
Tamako graduated from a university in Tokyo, but she now lives with her father back in Kofu. Tamako doesn't help her father or tries to get a job. She spends her time just eating and sleeping throughout the four seasons of the year.
The trials, tribulations, and joys of raising a child. The film follows the everyday events of a family with one boy, coming up to his second birthday, interspersed with occasional thoughts... See full summary »
A gem from Japan, where so many of the world's best films are being made today. Stylistically, this isn't anything all that special. It's just a simple drama (with some comic overtones) about recognizable people going about their lives. Yuko Tanaka, best known for voicing the character Lady Eboshi in Princess Mononoke, plays a 50 year old spinster. She's takes pride in her health, spending each morning in a vigorous workout as she delivers milk up and down the steep hills of Nagasaki. After she is done with this part time job, she works her regular job as a clerk at a grocery store (called S-Mart, which made this Army of Darkness fan giggle). Along her milk route lives a 50 year old man, whose wife is dying. It turns out the milk woman and the man, a child services worker, dated in high school, and each apparently still have something of a crush on the other. The film actually has some major narrative problems. When the screenwriter actually wants the two unrequited lovers to unite, he uses a pretty unbelievable deus ex machina technique. The climactic sequence is also really forced. But most of the film is beautifully small and observant of the two main characters, as well as many side characters. The film also has several subplots that seem like they will eventually weigh the film down, but never end up doing so. I think the best thing in the film is Tanaka's heartbreaking performance as the lonely milk woman, who has resigned herself to being alone for the rest of her life. Whatever the problems were, the film mostly transcends them.
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