An earth-quake causes a nuclear crisis in a fictive Japanese prefecture. In wake of the disaster, the members of the Ono family who reside just outside the border of the mandatory ... See full summary »
Bullied and diminished by his fellow employees, demure and bashful Ryoichi Suzuki finds support in an unusual friendship with a turtle. Together they will share many adventures and finally conquer the world.
Set in Kabukicho, an entertainment and red-light district in Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan. The main character Tatsuhiko doesn't have money or a job. One day, he meets a scout who recruits girls ... See full summary »
Shiro is twenty-seven years old and is tormented by his father's terminal cancer diagnosis. He copes by communicating his care and love to his father. We see the father and son relationship... See full summary »
In an alternate Japan, territorial street gangs form opposing factions collectively known as the Tokyo Tribes. Merra, leader of the Wu-Ronz tribe of Bukuro crosses the line to conquer all of Tokyo. The war begins.
Keiko Suzuki is a lonely waitress in Tokyo. Her father passes away of cancer and she becomes obsessed with the passage of time. And so, three weeks before her 22nd birthday, she decides to ... See full summary »
– Far into the future people are shadows of their former selves. Humans are far too short-lived and vulnerable, so artificial intelligence pervades the universe. One humanoid robot named Yoko, delivers packages to the fringes of distant galaxies. She has time on her hands so she listens to the audio diary of her predecessor, wonders at the fluttering of moths and peeks inside the packages. The parcels are filled with non-essential items that only humans could appreciate; faded photographs, bits of cloth and little mementos of every description. She is intrigued. As she interacts with humans on scattered planets Yoko learns to ride a bicycle and appreciate sounds, among other things. She sees that machines aren't so perfect and make mistakes just like humans do. "This film will give you a greater understanding of what it means to be human," said the director in Toronto. The film is set with 1950s décor and is shot nearly all in black and white, with a burst of color during one scene that represents "nostalgia for the past."
The eerie and abandoned feeling to the city scenery is all too real because it was shot in the cordoned off area around Fukushima. The film crew obtained permits and included non-professional actors who were evicted from the area at the time of the disaster. All sounds were recorded after the scenes were filmed. This imaginative and cerebral film is slow-going. I appreciate slow-moving films, yet felt the points could have been better made in less time. All in all it is wonderful to see the mechanical Yoko begin to appreciate memories, taking pictures, throwing a ball to a dog, music, games and all the little things that humans appreciate. Three and a half of five stars. Seen at the Toronto International Film Festival 2015.
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