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387 Ratings

Still the Water

Futatsume no mado | 2つ目の窓

Directed by Naomi Kawase
Japan, France, 2014
Romance, Drama


On the Japanese island of Amami-Oshima, a 14-year-old boy named Kaito stumbles upon a dead body floating in the sea. He attempts to solve the mystery of the body with the help of his girlfriend Kyoko as the pair experience growth through exposure to the never-ending cycle of life, death, and love.

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Still the Water Directed by Naomi Kawase
Even by Kawase’s own standards, the symbolism plumbs new depths of vapidity… The semi-improvised dialogue, part mumbled banalities and awkward pauses, part quasi-Buddhist homilies about cycles of life, death and regeneration and the spirit of place, is particularly trite.
July 03, 2015
Kawase’s work isn’t particularly well-known away from the festival circuit: as far as I’m aware, Still the Water is the first of her films to be given even a limited cinema release in the UK. It’s perhaps not quite strong enough to kick-start a Kawase craze, although fans of Hirokazu Kore-eda’s tender family dramas should find much to enjoy. It’s cinema to drift through. You can feel it washing between your toes.
July 02, 2015
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It strains hard to present itself as an rhapsodic, elemental teen love story set against a natural backdrop of the glowing moon, the crashing waves and the shimmering branches. But the final product comes across as crushingly self-conscious, all cute, boil-in-the-bag visual metaphors bemoaning the unpredictability of life and love, and dialogue which comprises of cheap, faux-poetic philosophising.
July 01, 2015
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