Relatively young Japanese master Hirokazu Kore-Eda remains the best successor to Ozu regularly showcased in the U.S. : a patient observer of Japanese family patterns, in his own manner, the 47-year-old auteur still captures the fleeting, rare detail, the moment of behavior, the instant of communion or miscommunication in a family setting, that is both wry and affecting. In “Still Walking,” (Aruitemo aruitemo, 2008), Kore-Eda’s seventh feature from a roster than includes the kid-centric “Nobody Knows” and “After Life,” he elaborates on family dynamics with sculpted naturalism like few other directors as the Yokoyama family gathers to mourn on the anniversary of a beloved son’s death on a single day fifteen years after. Comparison’s to Ozu’s 1953 “Tokyo Story” are apt: magic happens out of minutiae. Gestures indicate resentments that no longer simmer, but steep in a language of attention-inattention. It’s simple, heart-stopping, life-affirming stuff. With You, Hiroshi Abe, Yoshio Harada, Ryôga Hayashi, Haruko Kato, Kirin Kiki, Yui Natsukawa, Hotaru Nomoto, Kazuya Takahashi, Shohei Tanaka. 115m. (Ray Pride)
Ray Pride is Newcity’s film critic and a contributing editor to Filmmaker magazine.
His history of Chicago “Ghost Signs” in words and images will be published in Spring 2022.