A woman looks back on her family's life in Tokyo before and during WWII. A maid arrives from the countryside to work for an upper middle class family. She fits in well, but everyone's emotions are stirred up with the arrival of a student.
This movie is like 3 different films mixed in one. The first half is hard, wacky comedy. Nakatani Miki and Abe Hiroshi's chemistry was great, and I was laughing the whole time. Most of the second half, however, is straight up drama. It was a long reminiscence sequence that I found to be a bit too draggy. The last 15 minutes of this film is inspirational tear-jerker.
Although the ending really moved me, I wish they just stuck with comedy for this manga-based film. They tried to make it a bit too deep for a comedy with the drama section, and it just ruined the whole film. The ending features an epiphany scene that I personally love seeing in Japanese films, but it just wasn't enough to save this film.
I was once again impressed with Abe Hiroshi's versatility though, he just seems so natural in every single role he takes on. Nakatani Miki also did a very fine job in her rare leading role. Not great, but still a film worth watching.
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