Toho - 2005 - 133 minutes - PG
Seen this title numerous times before finally deciding to sit down one night and watch it. This was the time when I watch one movie I reviewed and needed a cleanser to wash those vile images from my mind. Well, this did it for me. It's a rather interesting film, featuring a talented cast, including Maki Horikita (if you're familiar with Japanese movies and drama, she's recognizable in this one), and Koyuki from "The Last Samurai", opposite Tom Cruise. The story centers on relationships of several individuals trying to make their way in late 1950s Tokyo in the midst of its post-war reconstruction.
It is filled with everything, from comedy to drama. Depending on the person, it'll make you laugh and cry as relationships are formed, while some are torn apart. I have to tell you, I really, really enjoyed this movie. "The Butcher" was definitely a mind-blender, saturating your very being with guilt-ridden emotions, while this one uplifts, even inspires. As a fan of Maki's previous work (Nobuta wo Produce, Atashinchi no danshi), it pleases me that even though starring alongside a great cast, she equally shares the spotlight in several scenes.
The beginning is kind of slow, which is usually the case in these type of films, but takes off later on. Other than that, it was a perfect movie for me. I would definitely give this movie a try.