Saturday, June 27, 2009

Departures (Okuribito)

a very moving film

daigo kobayashi is a cellist who has recently lost his gig and needs to find a new job. he applies and gets offered a job he knows nothing about, and it turns out it's for a business that prepares dead bodies for their departure. he keeps this a secret from his wife and friends because they look down on such things. daigo eventually gets good at it, and sees what he does as beautiful and necessary (which it is). we all die, and we all deserve some peace and respect in the end. daigo is still coming to grips with the death of his mother (for which he was absent for her funeral), and his father's disappearance when he was young. there is plenty of beautiful cello music to move the story along, especially the flashbacks of daigo as a child.
the film is very well made, and the story is very moving, and each character is well developed. i'm not sure if this was the best foreign film of 2008, but i can see why it won the academy award. it's very good.

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