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 »
After the final credits there's a short scene with the mysterious plant person in the subway tunnel. See more »
By Dan Miyakawa
Performed by Dan Miyakawa Ensemble See more »
No map and very few sounds
What can I say? The movie did not live up to the promise of its opening scene. It's well-shot and nicely lit, with a few postcard-perfect views of Tokyo, but the story makes no sense, the characters are poorly written, and Sergi Lopez is horribly miscast as the male lead. The ending is a formulaic cop-out.
The trailer tries to sell the movie as a sex thriller, which it's most decidedly not. It's a tale of two lost souls in a big city who try to find solace in each other, but fail, for various reasons.
Rinko Kikuchi performs well as a quiet fish market worker who moonlights as a paid assassin, but her character remains an enigma throughout the movie, which makes it difficult for the audience to connect or empathize with her. She bares her body more than once in fairly explicit sex scenes - and what a nice body it is - one only wishes the director could give us similar insight into her soul.
Sergi Lopez does his usual macho strut with a hint of menace which might have worked in a different movie, but feels utterly out of place in an upscale wine merchant from modern-day Tokyo. He is very unconvincing as Rinko's love interest, and is further hindered by his corpulent, scary hairy physique and significant age difference with his co-star. I could not for the life of me believe in chemistry between the two of them.
The omnipresent narrator, an older sound engineer who maintains chaste friendship with Rinko's character and gives the movie its title, is the most sympathetic of all, but he is more of a convenient voice-over device than a fully-fleshed character. Other parts are one-dimensional at best.
Recommended only for indiscriminate art-house fans, Japan fetishists, and furries.
18 of 27 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this