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Ana Valeria Becerril,
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A woman lives in a small village in Russia. One day she receives the parcel she sent to her husband, serving a sentence in prison. Confused and angered, she sets out to find why her package was returned to sender.
Subtle, poetic film about loss, redemption and acceptance
Saw this at TIFF on Saturday night. Packed theatre, sadly the director and none of the actors were in attendance. This was the first Naomi Kawase film I've seen, and I really enjoyed it. She's taken a relatively common film story line - an unlikely friendship between two people - and turned it into something quite authentic and memorable. One person is struggling with profound loss (blindness - he's a photographer) and the other is offering help while also working out her own issues (her father's death and her mother's senility). Kawase treats this subject matter very delicately, with lots of camera playing with light and several long- held close-ups of faces. The sound editor of this film should win a very big award, by the way. Sounds clearly play a big role in this film, and it's recorded and handled very well.
Kawase shoots her actors in a strange way, and I haven't figured out yet if it was intentional for this film only, or if it's something she's done in her other films. She often cuts off the tops of heads when framing her actors. It's so obvious it must be intentional, and maybe it relates to a line in the film when the photographer says he can see better when he looks down. I'm not sure, but it's definitely noticeable and something to consider.
Beautiful film...I was glad to get tickets to see a film from a director I was not familiar with, and also a film that will likely not be easy to see in a theatre outside of the festival circuit.
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