The sudden death of his wife plunges a terminally ill man into profound grief. Realizing how little he knew her and how little he showed her his affection, he devotes his last weeks to fulfilling her long-cherished dreams.
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A beautiful, beautiful film... It's filled with melancholy, loneliness we often face at some point in our lives. It deals with the paradoxes of our lives and conflicting nature of it. This film has a serious tone, and while some situations are tragic, there are also great and lifelike tragicomical moments mainly when the main character gets lost in Tokyo :) Definitely amazing film!
A touching and moving film from director Dorrie that grasps the bond of marriage and traces the journey of a man who after her death realizes he kept her from realizing her dreams and thus travels to Japan to achieve them somewhat before reuniting with her. Splendid performance by Elmar Wepper anchors the muted emotions lying underneath and brings the script to life. Perhaps Dorrie's best.
3.75 Not without flaws and some improbably plot points but the accuracy of the family dynamics and the touching nature of the ideas that it explores makes this worth a viewing if you appreciate contemplative cinema. Ozu comparisons might be overstating it but it remains a good film despite it's rather unappealing look (being shot on video - such a shame for such beautiful locations) and generally poor camera work.
A remarkable film. One where MUBI's now legendary technical glitches add to the film (a couple of freezes which seemed like planned moments of stillness). The film isn't easy to sum up without spoiling its effect but it feels like a film of two parts and they complement one another perfectly. It's about life and death and all in between.
I sensed a very sentimental criticism about individualism in modern european culture. Even a husband is indifferent to his wife and a child to his parents. The sequences in Japan emphasise the contrast between two cultures over two caring japanese characters, a dancer and a homeless. Besides, it's worth watching for its Ozu references.
You may worry about losing someone, maybe losing yourself without him/her around the cold arms of death, afraiding leaving her/him may be... You can't know, you can't even guess... If you are... Don't spent time worrying, just try to be better for that person, since you have time, you; both of you, together...
For me the highlight of this film is the poignant beauty of the relationship of the old couple. And the way the feel of "emptiness" crept slowly through the film, from the first revelation of their relationship with their children and then throughout the rest of the film. The emotional impact is slow but sure, and then you realize you're already drenched in it.