I Wish (2011) poster
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 386 users
# of Watchers: 876
Reviews: 1 user
Ranked #4673
Popularity #8828
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After his parents get divorced, Koichi winds up living with his mother and grandparents in Kagoshima, while his brother Ryunosuke lives with their father in Fukuoka. The brothers dream of their family being reunited one day, so they're both very excited when the Kyushu Shinkansen is completed, especially when they hear that a miracle will occur when the first trains meet. Because of this, they decide to do whatever they can do make sure this miracle actually takes place. Edit Translation

  • English
  • Türkçe
  • magyar / magyar nyelv
  • dansk
  • Country: Japan
  • Type: Movie
  • Release Date: Jun 11, 2011
  • Duration: 2 hr. 8 min.
  • Score: 7.7 (scored by 386 users)
  • Ranked: #4673
  • Popularity: #8828
  • Content Rating: G - All Ages

Where to Watch I Wish

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Cast & Credits


I Wish (2011) photo
I Wish (2011) photo
I Wish (2011) photo
I Wish (2011) photo
I Wish (2011) photo
I Wish (2011) photo


Jia M
4 people found this review helpful
Jul 24, 2016
Completed 0
Overall 8.0
Story 7.5
Acting/Cast 10
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 6.5
Hirokazu Koreeda is a film makers that wields a gentle yet powerful touch especially in portraying his trademark family films. I Wish is no exception. Relatively much more upbeat and energetic compared to Nobody Knows or Like Father Like Son, I Wish is a tale of brotherhood and ultimately of growing up.

Koreeda understands children. Here, he portrays the children's "innocent" and wishful thinking in a manner that it should be. Koichi's wish of a family being together (to his final wish) shows a 12-year-old child's longing and eventual acceptance of the things he can and cannot change. Ryu's wish for something reflects his innocence to his final wish reflects his growth and understanding. This is the same for the other young supporting characters as well.

I Wish isn't dramatic, perhaps it would even come out not as strong as Koreeda's other films (it's tone is similar to that of Our Little Sister and both were received well in Cannes). But it didn't matter because the star of the film are the children and how they're making sense and living their own respective situations. It's gentle and it's so natural. Once again, Koreeda proves his consistency as a director with his trademarks: frame and music pacing, young talented cast, little details, family theme, the apparent contrasts, beautiful cinematography and symbolism.

Here, we have much more upbeat songs which reflects the film's overall tone. The two leads being brothers in real life is a very good decision as it helps a lot with the chemistry. That's also saying that the young cast is such a delight to watch. The little details in the sponge cake, swimming trunks, volcanic ash, CD, vegetable, horse-meat sashimi are recurring and symbolic throughout the film.

The central theme revolving around two bullet trains intersecting is also a really nice touch: it reflects the brothers and their life. Each living at the end of each other (one in Kagoshima, known from being next to a volcano and the other in Fukuoka while not "countrysides", it's less suffocating that Tokyo; hence, really beautiful setting) and each of them going in their separate ways. Hitching a plan to meet and see this "miracle" of two trains symbolizes them.

The apparent contrast between the two also compliment each other: the eldest is unhappy and grumpy, the younger one is energetic and happy. Living in Kagoshima is problematic while living in Fukuoka seems more carefree. The father is a happy-go-lucky while the mother is more serious. Koichi wears a uniform to school and lives with his grandparents while Ryu doesn't wear a uniform and lives his father and his band mates. These contrast work to show the opposite between the two yet what also ultimately ties them together: brotherhood.

Perhaps the fact that its 2 hour running time seem to feel a little draggy and long to watch. I had no problem with Our Little Sister's lack of direction/ultimate goal and just mere storytelling which is similar to I Wish but I think I Wish touches on little sub-plots that could have been avoided so as to not let it feel like it was too stretched out. But other than that, this is another one of Koreeda's great works.

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  • Movie: I Wish
  • Country: Japan
  • Release Date: Jun 11, 2011
  • Duration: 2 hr. 8 min.
  • Content Rating: G - All Ages


  • Score: 7.7 (scored by 386 users)
  • Ranked: #4673
  • Popularity: #8828
  • Watchers: 876

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