Still Walking

Still Walking

Director: Hirokazu Kore-eda

Cast: Hirokazu Kore-eda, Hiroshi Abe, Yoshio Harada, Yui Natsukawa

     
 

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Director Hirokazu Kore-eda writes and directs this family drama that unfolds over the course of a single summer day as the Yokoyama family gathers for a rare reunion held to commemorate the death of the one who was taken before his time. It was 15 years ago that eldest Yokoyama son, Junpei, drowned in a tragic accident, and the onlySee more details below

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Overview

Director Hirokazu Kore-eda writes and directs this family drama that unfolds over the course of a single summer day as the Yokoyama family gathers for a rare reunion held to commemorate the death of the one who was taken before his time. It was 15 years ago that eldest Yokoyama son, Junpei, drowned in a tragic accident, and the only changes around the family home since that fateful day are so subtle that they're not likely to be noticed by anyone outside of the immediate family. Retired family patriarch Kyohei (Yoshio Harada) used to run a successful medical clinic out of the home, though the lights in his medical examining room haven't even been turned on in years. The tiles in the kitchen where energetic Toshiko (Kirin Kiki) cooks family meals are slowly coming loose, and as youngest son Ryota (Hiroshi Abe) arrives home, he does his best to hide the fact that he's currently unemployed. His older sister, Chinami (You), has also arrived with her family, and does her best to entertain everyone despite the undeniable cloud of melancholy hanging over the home. As the festive gathering commences and Toshiko lays out a lavish meal, it gradually becomes obvious that resentment and sorrow bonds this family as powerfully as love.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
Reminiscent of both Yasujiro Ozu's Tokyo Story and Kiyoshi Kurosawa's Tokyo Sonata in tone, this Japanese family drama explores a day in the lives of relatives as they commemorate the death of a beloved son. Though Still Walking features little plot development, it boasts well-crafted characters and painfully honest dialogue. More than a decade after his death, Junpei still figures prominently the Yokoyama family's lives. A shrine to him has a prominent place in his parents' home, and stories about the young doctor's life pervade conversation. More significantly, his brother, 40-year-old Ryota (Hiroshi Abe, Chocolate), still struggles to escape Junpei's shadow in the eyes of his mother and father. Accompanied by his new wife, Yukari (Yui Natsukawa, Hana), and her ten-year-old son (Shohei Tanaka, also from Hana), Ryota reluctantly travels to his parents' house for the memorial, where he reunites with his sister, Chinami (You, Nobody Knows), and her family. The matriarch, Toshiko (Kirin Kiki, Tokyo Tower), often hilariously lectures everyone on a variety of topics, while her husband, Kyohei (Yoshio Harada, Hana), remains quiet and reclusive, emerging from silence only to criticize. Ryota is a frequent target of Kyohei's attacks since his doctor father is unhappy he chose to be an art restorer rather than take over the family business. As the relatives eat their way through the day and visit Junpei's grave, the audience learns that Junpei's accidental death 15 years ago isn't the only element threatening to tear the family apart. Still Walking continues the themes of death, tragedy, and family that director Hirokazu Kore-eda established in previous films such as Hana, Nobody Knows, and Distance. His early documentary films also inform this drama's naturalistic feeling, which is buoyed by wonderful performances from everyone involved. Kore-eda has worked with a number of the film's actors -- Natsukawa, You, Tanaka, and Harada -- in his previous films, and these performers all provide authentic turns in their roles, even young Tanaka. As the film's center, Abe gives a remarkably human, layered performance in the role of Ryota, who is sympathetic but still flawed in his treatment of his family. With Still Walking, Kore-eda is continuing his path as heir to the throne of revered Japanese auteur Ozu. This subtle, meditative film dwells in the details of the Yokoyama family's lives on this single day that is at once special and entirely ordinary. Nostalgia and melancholy reign in Still Walking, but moments of humor punctuate the pain with brilliant results.

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Product Details

Release Date:
02/08/2011
UPC:
0715515067515
Original Release:
2008
Rating:
NR
Source:
Criterion
Region Code:
A
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Time:
1:54:00
Sales rank:
254

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Hiroshi Abe Ryota Yokoyama
Yoshio Harada Kyohei Yokoyama
Yui Natsukawa Yukari Yokoyama
Kazuya Takahashi Nobuo Kataoka
Shohei Tanaka Atsushi Yokoyama
Hotaru Nomoto Satsuki Kataoka
Ryoga Hayashi Mutsu Kataoka
Tomoya Taguchi Actor
You Chinami Kataoka
Kirin Kiki Toshiko Yokoyama
Haruko Kato Actor
Susumu Terajima Sushi delivery person
Yukari Horie Actor
Yoshiharu Takahashi Actor
Mitsuhiro Tamura Actor
Miyuri Kudo Actor
Keisuke Tanaka Actor

Technical Credits
Hirokazu Kore-eda Director,Editor,Screenwriter
Gontiti Score Composer
Taguchi Hijiri Producer
Takeo Hisamatsu Executive Producer
Toshihiro Isomi Production Designer
Yoshihiro Kato Producer
Kazumi Kawashiro Executive Producer
Kazuko Kurosawa Costumes/Costume Designer
Keiko Mitsumatsu Production Designer
Shuji Ohtake Sound/Sound Designer
Lee Bong Ou Executive Producer
Mutsuki Sakai Makeup
Keiichi Sanbe Production Manager
Yutaka Shigenobu Executive Producer
Yukata Tsurumaki Sound/Sound Designer
Yutaka Yamazaki Cinematographer

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Scene Index

New high-definition digital transfer, supervised and approved by director Hirokazu Kore-Eda and director of photography Yutaka Yamazaki, with DTS-HD Master audio soundtrack; New video interviews with Kore-Eda and Yamazaki; Documentary on the making of the film, featuring on-set footage; Trailer; Plus: a booklet featuring an essay by film critic Dennis Lim and recipes for for the food prepared in the film

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