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Map of the Sounds of Tokyo (2009)

R  |   |  Drama, Thriller  |  28 August 2009 (Spain)
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Ratings: 6.1/10 from 1,674 users  
Reviews: 15 user | 38 critic

A dramatic thriller that centers on a fish-market employee who doubles as a contract killer.



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Title: Map of the Sounds of Tokyo (2009)

Map of the Sounds of Tokyo (2009) on IMDb 6.1/10

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Credited cast:
Manabu Oshio ...
Takeo Nakahara ...
Hideo Sakaki ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Kôsuke Hishinuma
Jun Matsuo ...
Joan Potau
Josep Sandoval


A dramatic thriller that centers on a fish-market employee who doubles as a contract killer.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Thriller


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





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Release Date:

28 August 2009 (Spain)  »

Also Known As:

Carte des sons de Tokyo  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$8,000,000 (estimated)

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Production Co:

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Did You Know?


Isabel Coixet claims that she came up with the idea of Rinko Kikuchi's character while promoting The Secret Life of Words (2005) in Tokyo. Coixet was taking pictures during a walk through the city. She arrived at a fish market and tried to take one of a girl who was cleaning fish. The girl refused to get photographed, so Coixet started imagining possible reasons for that refusal. See more »


After David joins Ryu at the Love Hotel after cutting his hand, Rinko Kikuchi (Ryu) is laying on a couch. Her shoulder is covered in the two close ups but largely uncovered after the cut where the camera is further from her. See more »

Crazy Credits

After the final credits there's a short scene with the mysterious plant person in the subway tunnel. See more »


Featured in Fantasmes! Sexe, fiction et tentations (2013) See more »


One Dove
Performed by Antony and the Johnsons
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User Reviews

Lost in the sounds of Tokyo
30 August 2009 | by ( – See all my reviews

Having enjoyed greatly many of Isabel Coixet's movies (notably "Things I never told you" and "The secret life of words") I must say I was quite disappointed by this last movie.

It is difficult to point out what fails in this movie, but I certainly did not connect at all with its characters and situations. The movie is set in Tokyo, but contrary to "Lost in translation" here the movie tries to build half on Japanese characters and half on western ones, which really demands a deeper knowledge about japan. It is difficult for me to believe the Japanese part of the movie, first of all they all seem to speak very good English, which is, at least, difficult to believe, e.g. why would the Japanese girl, played by Kinko Rikuchi, speak good English at all?, why is the other guy working with the Spanish seller almost American? Must say maybe I am biased by my own experience with the Japanese people I met in japan, but certainly communication is in general much tougher than what Isabel portraits here.

Of course all the visual and sound stuff is really good, beautiful takes, nice sounds etc, but the story really does not make any sense to me from the beginning to the end. As the movie develops I got mostly bored, the sex scenes seem empty, repetitive and with no special purpose.

We do not get enough info to actually feel anything for any character, starting from the friendship between the guy recording sounds and the girl and ending by the business-man and his daughter. Everything seems fake to some extend and the whole story really appears to be built to serve as an excuse to go to Tokyo and enjoy the visual landscapes of the city (maybe just a documentary about the fish market would suffice).

Sadly, I must say I got nothing of what I was expecting: neither a nice insight into Japan, nor a situation I could connect with. I certainly would prefer to watch "Lost in Translation", read Amelie Nothomb or watch a good documentary about japan to see beautiful takes of the country, instead of spending two precious hours at the cinema.

In any case, I hope I ll enjoy better the next one from Coixet! (and I ll certainly keep enjoying Japanese food meanwhile)

33 of 54 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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