7.9/10
18,760
65 user 63 critic

Millennium Actress (2001)

Sennen joyû (original title)
Trailer
1:04 | Trailer

On Disc

at Amazon

A TV interviewer and his cameraman meet a former actress and travel through her memories and career.

Director:

Satoshi Kon
7 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

On Christmas Eve, three homeless people living on the streets of Tokyo find a newborn baby among the trash and set out to find its parents.

Directors: Satoshi Kon, Shôgo Furuya
Stars: Tôru Emori, Yoshiaki Umegaki, Aya Okamoto
Paprika (2006)
Animation | Adventure | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

When a machine that allows therapists to enter their patients' dreams is stolen, all Hell breaks loose. Only a young female therapist, Paprika, can stop it.

Director: Satoshi Kon
Stars: Megumi Hayashibara, Tôru Emori, Katsunosuke Hori
Perfect Blue (1997)
Animation | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A retired pop singer turned actress' sense of reality is shaken when she is stalked by an obsessed fan and seemingly a ghost of her past.

Director: Satoshi Kon
Stars: Junko Iwao, Rica Matsumoto, Shinpachi Tsuji
Môsô dairinin (TV Mini-Series 2004)
Animation | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Seemingly unconnected citizens of Tokyo are targeted for bludgeoning by a boy with a golden baseball bat. As detectives try to link the victims, they discover that following the assaults, the victims' lives have improved in some way.

Stars: Shôzô Îzuka, Toshihiko Seki, Michael McConnohie
Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A high-school girl named Makoto acquires the power to travel back in time, and decides to use it for her own personal benefits. Little does she know that she is affecting the lives of others just as much as she is her own.

Director: Mamoru Hosoda
Stars: Riisa Naka, Takuya Ishida, Mitsutaka Itakura
Memories (1995)
Animation | Fantasy | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

"Memories" is made up of three separate science-fiction stories. In the first, "Magnetic Rose," four space travelers are drawn into an abandoned spaceship that contains a world created by ... See full summary »

Directors: Kôji Morimoto, Tensai Okamura, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Shigeru Chiba, Hisao Egawa, Kayoko Fujii
Animation | Action | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A cyborg policewoman and her partner hunt a mysterious and powerful hacker called the Puppet Master.

Director: Mamoru Oshii
Stars: Atsuko Tanaka, Iemasa Kayumi, Akio Ôtsuka
Director: Satoshi Kon
Animation | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A twenty-seven-year-old office worker travels to the countryside while reminiscing about her childhood in Tokyo.

Director: Isao Takahata
Stars: Miki Imai, Toshirô Yanagiba, Yoko Honna
Animation | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Told in three interconnected segments, we follow a young man named Takaki through his life as cruel winters, cold technology, and finally, adult obligations and responsibility converge to test the delicate petals of love.

Director: Makoto Shinkai
Stars: Kenji Mizuhashi, Yoshimi Kondou, Satomi Hanamura
Porco Rosso (1992)
Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

In 1930s Italy, a veteran World War I pilot is cursed to look like an anthropomorphic pig.

Director: Hayao Miyazaki
Stars: Shûichirô Moriyama, Tokiko Katô, Bunshi Katsura Vi
Animation | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

In the year 2032, Batô, a cyborg detective for the anti-terrorist unit Public Security Section 9, investigates the case of a female robot--one created solely for sexual pleasure--who slaughtered her owner.

Director: Mamoru Oshii
Stars: Akio Ôtsuka, Atsuko Tanaka, Tamio Ohki
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Miyoko Shôji Miyoko Shôji ... Chiyoko Fujiwara (70's) (voice)
Mami Koyama ... Chiyoko Fujiwara (20-40's) (voice)
Fumiko Orikasa ... Chiyoko Fujiwara (10-20's) (voice)
Shôzô Îzuka Shôzô Îzuka ... Genya Tachibana (voice)
Shouko Tsuda Shouko Tsuda ... Eiko Shimao (voice)
Hirotaka Suzuoki ... Junichi Ootaki (voice)
Hisako Kyôda ... Mother (voice)
Kan Tokumaru Kan Tokumaru ... Senior Manager of Ginei (voice)
Tomie Kataoka Tomie Kataoka ... Mino (voice)
Takkô Ishimori Takkô Ishimori ... Head Clerk (voice)
Masamichi Satô Masamichi Satô ... Young Genya (voice)
Masaya Onosaka Masaya Onosaka ... Kyoji Ida (voice)
Masane Tsukayama ... The Man with the Scar (voice)
Kôichi Yamadera ... The Man of the Key (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Stephen Bent Stephen Bent ... Junichi Otaki (voice)
Edit

Storyline

A movie studio is being torn down. TV interviewer Genya Tachibana has tracked down its most famous star, Chiyoko Fujiwara, who has been a recluse since she left acting some 30 years ago. Tachibana delivers a key to her, and it causes her to reflect on her career; as she's telling the story, Tachibana and his long-suffering cameraman are drawn in. The key was given to her as a teenager by a painter and revolutionary that she helped to escape the police. She becomes an actress because it will make it possible to track him down, and she spends the next several decades acting out that search in various genres and eras. Written by Jon Reeves <jreeves@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements, violence and brief mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese | English

Release Date:

14 September 2002 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Millennium Actress See more »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,732, 14 September 2003, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$37,285, 28 September 2003
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

A visual nod is made to the films of Yasujiro Ozu in a scene where the protagonist is talking with her mother, which is framed in the director's iconic style: a static symmetrical interior shot, the camera placed at the height of a sitting man's eyes and a deliberate mise-en-scene, complete with teapot. See more »

Goofs

In the film, a small tremor occurs before a major earthquake. Usually this should happen in reverse, even in an area of high seismic activity such as Japan. See more »

Quotes

Chiyoko Fujiwara: The full moon...
The Man of the Key: It won't appear tomorrow, but I like This moon better. After the full moon begins to wane. But after fourteen nights, starting tomorrow, I hope to see it again. I gotta go.
Chiyoko Fujiwara: But, you are hurt!
The Man of the Key: My friends are fighting in Manchuria. The painting is not of much help.
See more »

Connections

References Ran (1985) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Defying time and space, love is consummated
20 December 2003 | by sunsetriderSee all my reviews

Reprising roles that span a millennium, an actress who longs for her first love re-enacts the drama of affirming her love for him. 'Millennium Actress' puts the theme of unrequited love in a light that is universally encompassing. It is ultimately a story of a pure-hearted character whose loving devotion to one person, innocently conceived and passionately guarded, lends itself sentience and weaves fiction with stark reality of often longing and despair. There is no doubt that this film has left me profoundly impressed.

'Millennium Actress' adopts an esoteric 'film within film' form that is disclosed in flashbacks by the actress, Chiyoko. Her highlights of her cinematography is interwoven with real events of her life, and both fiction and non-fiction aspects of her life adhere to the context of concise Japanese history. Some of these flashbacks at least in their thematic references recur more than once, and variations between them become clever plot devices that lend meaningful depth of time and space to the film.

The recurring and consistently relevant symbols in the flashbacks not only pique the viewer's interest, but also anchor a means to explain the psyche of Chiyoko. Her reaction in each flashback and present to one particular entity is another indication of her perspective on her love, one of many signs of deep implication that enhances the film.

The animation in the film tends to be minimalist except for a few instances where it is cast in significant passage of film (for example running), but the art direction and technique which realize various era of Japanese history and provides a fluid transition between fictional flashbacks to accounts rooted in reality is most elegantly and superbly executed. Character design is accordingly appealing, especially the depiction of Chiyoko through various stages of her life that delineates the same dignity and purity. So much so that it seems almost as if Chiyoko itself transcends to some abstract form of ideal love, only unrequited, and therefore something of great potential but not wasted; since it essentially defies time and space, as allegorically portrayed in her various film roles.

The director Satoshi Kon commented in his interview on his pleasure with the music, which seems to be electronically assembled with a lot of repetition. It sometimes stands out as a bit overbearing and idiosyncratic, yet considering the nature of theme from the film it does not detract from the overall viewing experience.

Only note of letdown, if there is any point to it at all, comes from my personal disdain for a rather melancholy sequence at the end. Yet, a conventional Hollywood resolution would not apply here. As a footnote to my rambling, and for which I must apologize, I should add that 'till death do us part' could not be more opposite of what this film professes.

9/10


12 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 65 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed