- Overall 9.0
- Story 9.0
- Acting/Cast 10
- Music 9.0
- Rewatch Value 9.0
"We don't usually talk much. Actually, we can't." - Toshiya
A glimpse into the life of Miyata, a middle-aged father who can't, or doesn't know how, to talk about feelings. Stuck in a rut with the prejudices of his generation ("men don't cry"), he clumsily navigates his very few personal relationships... Insults followed by rough apologies, encouragement disguised as badmouthing, lies told to "protect" his children (but in reality those lies are read more to protect his own self-image). It's a simple story of a man learning to reconnect with his own emotions.
A working-class man living in a society built around the education industry/market, Miyata can't help but blame "the times" for his own situation. Working but never earning quite enough, he feels left behind in this world of "machines" and private universities, both symbols of the generational and emotional gaps between Miyata and his children.
Another major theme is "loss". The scenes involving Miyata's wife (his dream sequences, the tape player, his one-sided conversations with her...) show another side to his personality: affectionate, lonely, and deeply affected by the loss of his love. Sanada, Miyata's only friend, also experiences loss, but deals with it in a very different way. He serves as both a catalyst and a comfort while Miyata attempts to repair his rusty family bonds.
A quiet and contemplative film, showing an experience of life that doesn't so often get fair treatment in media. 10/10 for Mitsuishi Ken's performance. I felt everything, and now I have a different understanding of my own family relations.