Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Nobody Knows: Grade A


Nobody Knows (2004) (Japanese, subtitled).

Akira Fukushima, others. Director=Hirokazu Koreeda

Three girls, aged about 4 to 10, and one 12 year old boy, Fukushima, are abandoned by their call-girl mother in a tiny Tokyo apartment. They try to survive, mainly through the efforts of the boy, who begs and steals what he can. Fukushima is very good looking and a remarkable actor. The children’s daily lives are full of humor, innocence, and sadness. The details in their lives and of the city are compelling, especially if you’ve been there, but even if you haven’t, the photography is excellent and itself displays a Japanese sensibility. There are a few twists and turns, but basically the story doesn’t resolve; the movie just ends. I was surprised I liked this artistically done slice of life so much.

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