Film

Okaeri
FILM

Okaeri

おかえり (Okaeri)
Friday, March 28, 2014

Image: Okaeri © 1995 COMTEG.

Donald Richie on Okaeri:
"Makoto Shinozaki in his debut film tells the arresting story of a typical young couple who are brought to sanity thorough the wife's madness. Beautiful, laconic filmmaking with an unforgettable performance of Miho Ueshima as the wife... Many films celebrate the status quo, just as many directors are only concerned with saying what everyone already knows. Shinozaki, an essayist, knows how to think for himself. And as a projectionist (this is how he supports himself), he also knows film history including--the largest influence on his work--Robert Bresson." (Excerpted from Richie's A Hundred Years of Japanese Film.)

Makoto Shinozaki's amazing first feature subtly but poignantly portrays the emotional and psychological landscape of a young couple. Okaeri means "welcome home." The wife, who is gradually becoming schizophrenic, greets her husband with "okaeri" when he comes home. The husband learns how to accept his wife for who she is by saying "okaeri" back to her.

1995, 97 min., 35mm, color, in Japanese with English subtitles. Directed by Makoto Shinozaki. With Susumu Terajima, Miho Uemura, Shoichi Komatsu, Tomio Aoki.

Part of Richie's Electric Eight: A Tribute to Donald Richie (1924-2013), Part 2


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