Une œuvre nipponne, avec en filigrane les rapports enfants / parents, qui cumule avec une délectation toute asiatique, sympathie et morosité, avec au départ, une affaire criminelle au moult ramifications et possibles et à son achèvement, une longue et fastidieuse logomachie sur la justice débouchant sur une étrange viduité scénaristique. www.cinefiches.com
If i'm not mistaken, for more than 2 years it didn't commercially premiere a Japanese film in Lisbon and it's still from the same director that this phenomenon happens. Loving so much this director's "Maborosi", i should launch rockets, but no. Much seduced by academism and rhetoric language and music, only in the moments of the conversations between the criminal and the defense lawyer in prison this film arises.
I'm glad Kore-eda decided to shake things up, his usual schtick was getting a bit stale. Unfortunately this really didn't grab me the way I hoped. Great performances as expected and I enjoyed the examination of the flawed Japanese justice system, but on the whole I was left rather cold. But maybe that was the point.
Viennale, DCP _ Not the strongest Koreeda by any means. But it starts like a thriller with all the usual codes and becomes slowly but surely a Koreeda film. The writing is nevertheless a bit confusing. Another lonely male figure who lost contact with his family, another day in Japan full of trains and food. But this almost religious take on murder and justice was made unclear to me due to too many unnecessary twists.
Reviews have been mixed, given this is dark territory for Koreeda. I believe its detractors have missed the point, failing to even understand the meaning of the title. The director's humanism is very much alive here, even in the midst of deceit and despair; it's just delivered with the resignation of a condemned man. Truth is unknowable and perhaps we don't deserve to know when willing to mete out judgment on a life.
A very good courtroom procedural with a brilliantly complex performance from the always great Kōji Yakusho. Still, this is a major change of pace from Koreeda and I don't know that I'm a fan of the new style. He does familial drama best and I hope he returns to form on his next feature.