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Dolls (2002)

Three stories of never-ending love.


Takeshi Kitano


Takeshi Kitano
3 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Miho Kanno Miho Kanno ... Sawako
Hidetoshi Nishijima ... Matsumoto
Tatsuya Mihashi ... Hiro, the Boss
Chieko Matsubara ... Ryoko, the Woman in the Park
Kyoko Fukada ... Haruna Yamaguchi, the Pop Star
Tsutomu Takeshige Tsutomu Takeshige ... Nukui, the Fan
Kayoko Kishimoto ... Haruna's Aunt
Kanji Tsuda Kanji Tsuda ... Young Hiro
Yûko Daike ... Young Ryoko
Ren Osugi ... Haruna's Manager (as Ren Ôsugi)
Shimadayu Toyotake Shimadayu Toyotake ... Tayu, Puppet Theater Narrator
Seisuke Tsurusawa Seisuke Tsurusawa ... Puppet Theater Shamisen Player
Minotaro Yoshida Minotaro Yoshida ... Puppeteer of Umegawa the Courtesan
Yoshida Yoshida ... Puppeteer of Chubei
Shôgo Shimizu ... Matsumoto's Father


Three stories of undying love: Bound by a long red cord, a young couple wanders in search of something they have forgotten. An aging yakuza returns to the park where he used to meet his long-lost girlfriend. A disfigured pop star confronts the phenomenal devotion of her biggest fan. Written by <intlpress@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Romance


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Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


This is the last Takeshi Kitano film to feature music by Joe Hisaishi. Kitano claimed that it became too expensive to hire Hisaishi for soundtracks while Hisaishi claimed that he didn't like the screenplay of the movie. Actually, they both had an argument about some pieces which weren't selected for the soundtrack, and where to put the others in the movie. They stopped working together since then. See more »


Referenced in Embrace (2007) See more »


Written by Joe Hisaishi
Performed by Joe Hisaishi
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User Reviews

Beautifully told modern-day myth
1 May 2005 | by rooprectSee all my reviews

I was not aware that beauty like this existed in the world. In _Dolls_, director/writer Kitano draws us into a classical myth set in contemporary Japanese society. You may recognize elements borrowed from traditional legends (Oedipus, Arabian Nights, etc); however the central theme is, as far as I know, an original. It is the story of the "leashed beggars" who are introduced in the beginning, and whose story unfolds in a challenging, non-linear way as the film progresses.

I call it "challenging", because the viewer is compelled to pay attention to every detail in order to realize the plot and sublime theme. In that respect, it is much like _Citizen Kane_, told in fragments which the viewer must assemble and interpret. The underlying philosophy is yet more elusive and will have you debating for days afterward.

To me, what made this film superior to _Citizen Kane_ (through no fault of Orson Welles!) is the extreme use of colors and vivid scenery. The stunning backgrounds become a silent character in the movie, filling in for the sparse dialogue and periodic silence. As we evolve through Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter, the saying comes to mind "a picture is worth a thousand words". If this review makes sense to you, then you will not be disappointed!

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Official Sites:

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Release Date:

12 October 2002 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Lutke See more »

Filming Locations:

Niigata Prefecture, Japan See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,067, 12 December 2004

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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